How to Backup C Drive on Windows 11 [2024 Ultimate Guie]

Don't be concerned if you don't know how to backup the C drive in Windows 11. This article provides step-by-step instructions for three viable methods for backing up your C drive (system drive). In any case, using backup software will save you time and make backup tasks easier.

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Updated on Mar 15, 2024

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Key Takeaways

  • ✅C drive, usually the system drive of the Windows OS, is used to store information, including settings, system files, installed programs, etc.
  • ✅Backing up the C drive is necessary because it tends to be affected by viruses and malware or suffer from a failing hard drive, resulting in an unbootable system.
  • ✅EaseUS Todo Backup, a reliable Windows backup software, provides the easiest way to back up C drive on Windows 11 with simple clicks.

Is It Necessary to Backup C Drive to An External Hard Drive?

"I have installed many programs and games on my C drive. Recently, my laptop warned me there may be a virus existing on it from time to time. I’m afraid that my games will be affected by the virus. So, I plan to back up my C drive to an external hard drive. But I haven’t done it before. How can I back up the entire C drive to an external hard drive?"

C drive, by default the system drive, usually saves many important data of your computer or laptop, including the Windows operating system, system-related files, settings, installed applications, configurations, logs, etc. 

If your hard drive fails or your device is infected with a virus or malware, you will lose everything if you do not have a backup of your C drive. Then, you'll have to start from scratch.

When the C drive is damaged or infected with malware, creating a backup on an external hard drive allows you to restore it to its previous working state. Furthermore, because of its portability, a bootable C drive backup enables you to access your system on other devices, even if your C drive is unsafe.

📖Further Reading: Windows 11 Backup to External Hard Drive | Backup C Drive to OneDrive

3 Effective Ways Backup C Drive on Windows 11/10/8/7

Knowing the importance and necessity of backing up C drive, let’s dive into the specific solutions to help you do it effectively. There are various ways to create a backup for your C drive, and we’ll focus on three common ones, including using third-party software, Windows Backup and Restore, and Command Prompt.

Among them, third-party software, like EaseUS Todo Backup, is the most recommended one. It provides an easy operation and ensures no data loss during the process, which is the choice for most Windows users. 

Method 1️⃣. Easiest Way to Backup C Drive on Windows 11👍

As mentioned above, EaseUS Todo Backup Free is a reliable and professional Windows backup software that enables you to back up C drive to an external hard drive easily and for free.

Compatible with Windows 11/10/8/7, EaseUS Todo Backup can back up C drive by creating a system image. It also has many advanced backup features, such as scheduled, compressed, incremental, and differential backup

Apart from C drive, this free software also supports backing up files, disks, games, apps, etc., to various locations, including hard drives, cloud storage services, NAS, etc.

While creating a system image, it will automatically select C drive and other system-related partitions by default.

🎁What are you waiting for? Download and use this practical tool to perform a backup task right now!

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Todo Backup and choose "Create Backup" on the home page, click "Select backup contents".

create system backup step1

Step 2. Among the four available categories, click "OS" to start back up.

create system backup step2

Step 3. The system partition will be automatically selected, you only need to select the location.

create system backup step3

Step 4. Local Drive, Cloud, and NAS are available for you to save the backup file. You can also connect an external hard drive to preserve the system backup files.

create system backup step5

Step 5. You can customize the settings in "Options" at the left bottom. After that, click "Backup Now", and the process will begin.

create system backup step 5

*After finishing the backup process, you can check the backup status, recover, open, or delete the backup by right-clicking the backup task on the left.

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Method 2️⃣. Backup C Drive with Windows Backup and Restore

If you don't want to install third-party software, Windows Backup and Restore(Windows 7) is available on Windows 11 and can assist you in creating a system image. 

Step 1. Go to Control Panel by typing Control Panel in the search bar, and locate Backup and Restore(Windows 7).

Step 2. Click Create a system image from the left panel.

create a system image

Step 3. In the pop-up window, choose a location where you want to save the C drive backup. You can choose an external hard drive, a CD/DVD, or a network location. Click Next to continue.

select a backup location

Step 4. In the new window, the C drive and other system-related hidden partitions will be selected by default. Check and click Next to continue.

Step 5. Check and confirm backup settings, both backup source partitions and target location and click Start Backup to conduct the task.

Method 3️⃣. Backup C Drive via Command Prompt

Using Command Prompt to back up C drive in Windows 11 is also feasible if you have certain knowledge about computers and code. 

Step 1. Press the Windows + R keys to open the Run command. Type cmd and click OK to open the Command Prompt. Or, you can type cmd in the search bar and choose the Run as administrator option.

Step 2. In the command window, type the following command and press Enter.

wbadmin start systemstatebackup -backupTarget: [-quiet]

  • Replace backupTarget part with your C drive

use command prompt

You need to note that using this method can back up only one partition at a time. If your system is stored on more than one partition, you must conduct the command several times to perform a complete system backup.

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The Wraps Up

These are all about how to backup C drive on Windows 11, 10, 8, and 7. Three methods are covered in the blog, and you can choose one that you like. 

EaseUS Todo Backup is our best-recommended solution to create a system image for its easy operation and simple UI. With this robust and professional backup tool, all kinds of backup tasks will become easier and smoother. Download and back up your data for free!

FAQs on Windows 11 Backup C Drive

1. How do I backup my entire computer on Windows 11?

To back up an entire computer on Windows 11, you can create a system image, which will take a snapshot of everything on your computer, including the operating system, settings, system-related files, installed programs, etc. Windows Backup and Restore is a built-in tool to do it easily:

  • Go to Contro Panel > System and Security > Backup and Restore (Windows 7).
  • Create a system image > Select a location to save the backup > Next.
  • Click the Start Backup button to execute the task.

2. Does Windows 11 have a backup program?

Yes, Windows 11 has its backup programs, including Backup and Restore(Windows 7) and File History. Backup and Restore supports creating a system image and backing up a file or a folder. File History is designed to save files in the Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos, and Desktop folders and the OneDrive files available offline on your PC. 

3. Does Windows Backup save everything?

The answer is NO, Windows Backup, Backup and Restore, doesn’t save everything on your computer. Creating a system image only backs up the system drive(by default, the C drive). So, if you save data on other drives, you need to back it up separately.

EaseUS Todo Backup

EaseUS Todo Backup is a dependable and professional data backup solution capable of backing up files, folders, drives, APP data and creating a system image. It also makes it easy to clone HDD/SSD, transfer the system to different hardware, and create bootable WinPE bootable disks.

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    Larissa has rich experience in writing technical articles and is now a professional editor at EaseUS. She is good at writing articles about data recovery, disk cloning, disk partitioning, data backup, and other related knowledge. Her detailed and ultimate guides help users find effective solutions to their problems. She is fond of traveling, reading, and riding in her spare time.…
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