Back up your files to an external hard drive

External hard drive

It’s important to back up all your personal computer files – photographs, video, music and documents – to avoid losing them should something happen to your computer, such as a hard disk failure or a virus attack.

Backing up your files involves making a copy of them and then storing that copy somewhere safe away from your computer. Should the need arise, you can retrieve and copy the files back onto your computer.

Files can be copied onto an external hard drive or memory stick. Alternatively, you can use an online backup service, which stores your files on remote servers. You can copy files manually or use Windows 8 File History feature, which automatically backs up files that are in your libraries, contacts, favourites, Microsoft SkyDrive and on your desktop.

Save files on a memory stick or external hard drive
Step 1  Plug a memory stick or external hard drive into the USB port of your computer.

Step 2  Your computer should recognise that you’ve attached a device. The external hard drive or memory stick will appear in the File Explorer window on the Desktop.

Step 3  Either drag-&-drop or copy-&-paste files and folders from their location on your hard drive onto the external hard drive or memory stick

Step 4  To remove the external device, right click the drive name in the left-had pane of the File Explorer window (under ‘Computer’) and from the pop-up menu click Eject.

Step 5  To restore files, re-attach the hard drive or memory stick and copy files back to your computer’s hard drive.

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