One of the best ways to protect your files and documents on Windows 11 is to back them up automatically without using paid software or third-party services. In this guide you will discover how to do it with OneDrive, via file history and finally through windows backup.
File History is an option that creates regular copies of your files on an external hard drive or network shared folder, it’s like backing up TimeMachine from a Mac to an external storage device.
It is an ideal solution for users who have a lot of data, such as videos, music, software or projects. The only downside is that you must always have the external hard drive plugged into your computer so that you can back up files and folders properly.
As it concerns windows backup, which you may already know, is another option that copies your files to removable media or a network location. It works like File History, but it also backs up your Windows 11 system files.
You can schedule backups once a day only. Because the backups are local, your files will be protected against accidental deletion, hardware problems, and system corruption, but not against natural disasters. Windows Backup is more suitable for keeping your data long term or for doing full backups.
Finally, backup via OneDrive is the file backup solution on Windows 11 that Microsoft encourages you to use more (to sell its paid storage solution). With OneDrive, Microsoft’s cloud storage service, your files are automatically backed up to the cloud whenever you sign in and save files to the OneDrive folder. Your data is thus protected from natural disasters and accessible from all your devices. The only downside is that you need a subscription to get 1TB of storage.
Knowing that we have already published an article on the same subject but on Windows 10this new guide now tells you how to back up your files on Windows 11 in different ways.
Back up your files on Windows 11 with File History
To back up your files to Windows 11 with File History, you need to follow these steps:
– Connect an external storage medium (USB, Hard disk) to your PC or choose a shared network location.
– Open the Control Panel of Windows 11 and go in System and Security > File history.
– In the window that opens File Historythen select your external drive or a network location for your backup and click Enable to turn on File History.
– Still in the same window, and for more control over your backups, on the left of the window, click on advanced settings and there you can choose and determine the frequency of backups and for how long you want to keep the backed up versions.
It is also possible to exclude folders and change the location as well as to do a restore and all this is accessible from the left pane of the File History window.
Voila, File History backs up your user folder data.
Back Up Your Files on Windows 11 with Windows 11 Backup
To back up your files on Windows 11 with Windows 11 backup, you need to follow these steps:
– Open the Control Panel of Windows 11 and go to System and security then click on Backup and restore.
– Then click Configure Backup.
– Then choose the location where you want to save your backup (external storage medium if not on a network location).
– Click on the following button at the bottom of the window then choose the backup option that suits you (Let Windows choose for you Or Choose the files and folders you want to back up yourself) and click Next.
Here, in this window you can also set the frequency of backups then click on Register And Run backup.
Backup your files on Windows 11 with OneDrive
To back up your files to Windows 11 with Windows 11 backup, you need to follow these steps:
– Open the Settings of Windows 11 and go to Accounts > Windows Backup.
– Activate the button Back up my files to start backing up to the cloud with OneDrive.
– Choose the items you want to back up: OneDrive folder synchronization, Remember my apps and Remember my preferences
Sign in with your Microsoft account on all your Windows 11 devices to sync your settings and restore your Microsoft Store apps.
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