How To Save And Restore Data In Windows 10 With File History

We understand how important it is to save our important files and documents from unexpected situations like hard drive failure, power outage or some other issues. Preferably, we should be backing up our data regularly. However, when talking about Windows OS, you can copy all important files to an external storage device such as a USB drive (for smaller amount of data) and hard drive (for larger amount of data) on regular basis. Easy-going souls can buy a software that can automatically backup data on a cloud storage on daily basis (or as per your preference). On the other hand, you can also automatically backup your computer’s data using Windows 10’s amazing feature called “File History”.

Windows File History

File History is an amazing tool that helps users to automatically backup and restore data on an external hard drive easily and conveniently. The feature is available in Windows 8/8.1 and 10. For backing up data, you need an external hard drive (NTFS file system).

File History On Windows 10

Windows’ File History continuously backs up data in real time. It creates successive backups and every copy stores only modifications after the latest backup.

File History replaces “Previous Versions” feature in Windows as it stores multiple successive copies of a single file. Now easily bring back earlier versions of files you liked using File History.

How To Backup Files

In Windows 10, you can access access File History by two ways. You can either access it from the Control Panel. Choose System and Security > File History.

Otherwise, you can access it via Settings option.

Go to Settings > Update & Security > Backup.

We would be discussing the latter method in this chunk of the article.

Click Start and Select Settings option.

windows 10 settings

Click Update & Security. Further, select Backup option.

windows settings update and security

After reaching Backup, you can plug in an external storage device. Now click ‘+’ to add the drive.

Backup using file history

After adding the storage device, Windows will start backing up files in the device. Also, ensure that you have switched on “Automatically backup my files” feature.

Automatically backup my files

Now as you have set up the backing up process, you can decide which folders you want to backup by adding or removing them through “More Options” under the Backup slider.

Backup more option

Click ‘Add Folder’ to add folders.

backup option add folder

To remove a folder, select a folder and click ‘Remove’.

Backup option remove

Restore Files Using File History

To restore files, go to Control Panel > File History

File history


Then click “Restore Personal Files”.

Restore personal files

Afterwards, click the green button to restore files to original location.

restore files to original location

You can also choose the location to restore files. To restore files to your desired location, click “gear” icon on the control panel window.

gear icon control panel

Then, select “Restore To” to restore files to the location.

Retore to file location

Other than that, you can use Advanced Settings to select how frequently you want to backup your files, and how long you want to keep them saved in the drive. Click ‘Advanced Settings’ on the left side of the panel and choose your preferences. You can also delete backup files whenever you feel they are no longer required by clicking ‘Clean up versions’.

Note:- Previous versions with a lifespan of more than an year gets automatically removed by default.

Here’s a brief technical run about how to save and restore your important files in Windows 10 with File History. Hope the article guides you properly. Connect with us in the comments below if you are facing any difficulties in the process.

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