Another Look At Backing Up Your Computer
Backing up your computer is one of the most important things every computer user should be doing. However, we’ve noticed many people don’t back up their files at all. We think that sometimes this is because backup software, especially image backup software, can be somewhat confusing. And so currently we stopped recommending image backups for most Windows 10 users unless they are using their computers for critical business purposes.
Here’s what we think about image backups.
1.) Most image backup software programs can be confusing to many home users.
2.) Unless you keep multiple image backups – and that takes a lot of external hard drive space – you run the risk of your image backup being created complete with any problems and errors that caused your computer problems that led to using your backups in the first place.
3.) Unless you keep at least 2 image backups and keep one pristine, it’s possible you would be backing up your problems right along with your files and programs.
4.) Windows 10 has so many ways to recover from serious problems, that were not available in previous versions of Windows… for instance:
1. System Reset
System Reset has been improved to give you two options to reinstall Windows 10. One to keep all your files and reinstall Windows 10 from a perfect version of Windows 10 directly from Microsoft’s servers (the Cloud download option).
Or you can choose to reinstall Windows from the recovery files already on your PC.
Or you can choose to remove all your files and clean install Windows. Read more about Windows 10 Reset here. Note: The screenshot above is from a test version of Windows 10 version 2004 due out in May 2020.
2. Fresh Start
Windows 10 also offers a fresh start option which allows you to keep all you files and some of your settings and clean install Windows 10. Read more about Fresh Start here.
3. Free downloadable Windows 10 installation media
You can download the Windows 10 installation file and create a Windows 10 installation DVD or a USB flash drive any time you want. You can download the files to create a Windows 10 installation DVD or USB from this page. And once you make the Windows 10 installation DVD or USB you don’t have to continually update it, it will update when you use it to install Windows.
4. File History backup keeps all your personal files backed up.
We’ve been using File History on some of our computers for 3 years and it’s worked flawlessly for us. It backs up all your personal files such as pictures, documents, videos, music, etc. It’s a quick and easy setup and a 1 TB external should be plenty for most users. Your files are continually backed up so you always have the latest copies of all your personal files. And because you’re not backing up programs, hard drive sectors, etc. you’re also not backing up system problems, malware or other unwanted problems. Learn more about File History here.
This is not to say there is no place for image backups, there is. But for most home users using Windows 10, image backups may be unnecessary and sometimes end up being more trouble than they’re worth.
However, if you’re currently using image backup software and your comfortable with it, that’s great. Everyone must keep good backups of some kind.
The easier it is for you to create reliable backups, the more likely you are to make them. And that’s what we’re hoping for. We hope this helps you make an informed decision and helps you create a simple backup plan that works for you with the least amount of effort, maintenance, and worry.