Automatic Backup Windows 7 to External Hard Drive (2 Ways)

You will learn how to automatic backup Windows 7 to external hard drive easily. Both ways are included.


by Lily Updated on December 1, 2023

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Need to automatic backup Windows 7  to external hard drive

Automatic backup is very important for users to keep data security, since it not only make an exact copy of your Windows 7 at the current time, but also keep changes made later. Thus, you will always have the latest backups of your computer. This greatly reduces data loss because you cannot backup newly added or modified files.

Backup Files to External Hard Drive

In addition, when something bad happens, you can use the backup image you created before to restore computer to an earlier date instead of reinstalling Windows, programs, etc. If you don't create a file backup to store your important data, you will lose all of them. 

How do I automatic backup to external hard drive in Windows 7?

To set up automatic backup to external hard drive in Windows 7, you have two ways, namely using Backup and Restore and third-party software - AOMEI Backupper Standard. 

Backup and Restore: It is able to backup user files, as well as partition, system or entire disk. Note if you want to backup specific partition or entire disk, you need to tick them manually. Support internal/external hard drives and network location and daily, weekly, monthly schedule backup (every Sunday at 7:00 PM by default). 

AOMEI Backupper Standard: It is capable of backing up files, system, disk or partition automatically, daily incremental backup by default. And you can enjoy normal compression, intelligent sector backup, automatic splitting, etc to reduce backup image size. Besides, you can also choose to backup them weekly or monthly and save them to any recognized storage device, set high compression level, and more. 

Well then, which one should you choose? Both of them are a good choice, but the previous one does not compress backup image, which will occupy much disk space. It's not updated and maintained nowadays, and you may encounter system backup failed error while using it, the backup did not complete successfully, for example. If you want to automatically backup files to an external hard drive in Windows 7 without any obstacle, try AOMEI Backupper Standard.

👉 Automatically backup files to an external hard drive in Windows 7 with AOMEI Backupper
👉 Automatic backup Windows 7 computer to external hard drive with Backup and Restore

Automatically backup files to an external hard drive in Windows 7 with AOMEI Backupper

Here you will use AOMEI Backupper Standard to backup files to external hard drive in Windows 11, 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista, XP. Also, you can choose to backup system, disk and partition if you need it. If you want to backup files without booting into Windows 10, you can create a bootable USB or CD/DVD in advance and boot from it. 

Download this software and install it on your computer. Please connect your external hard drive to the computer and make sure it is accessible. Then learn how to automatically backup files to an external hard drive in Windows 7 as follows:

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

(PS: This version only supports Windows 7/8/10/11. If you are currently using server system, try AOMEI Backupper Server.)

1. Launch this software. Choose "Backup" and "File Backup" subsequently.

File Backup

2. Click “Add File” or “Add Folder” to select files you want to backup. Also, you can type a new task name in the box if you want to distinguish it from other backups

Add Folders Files

3. Select the external disk as destination path.

Select Destination

4. To automatically backup Windows 7 to external hard drive, click “Schedule Backup” > "Enable Schedule Backup" and select "Daily", "Weekly", "Monthly". Then, click  "Start Backup" to execute this task. 

Schedule Settings General

You can also use  "Event trigger", "USB plug in" on the professional version. 

After you set a scheduled backup task, it will use "Incremental Backup" to backup only changed files by default. But in the long run, your backup disk may be fulfilled unless you delete backup files manually or automatically.

Since the incremental backup requires all the backups to be intact while doing recovery, if you delete it manually, this may result in subsequent backups invalid.

Thus, it's suggested to enable backup scheme and automatic backup cleanup methods to delete backup images automatically. You need to upgrade to the professional or other advanced editions to enjoy it. 

Backup Scheme Cleanup Methods

Besides, you can choose to backup files to external hard drive automatically with "Differential Backup" feature. It uses less backup time, disk space and is easy to recover. For differences between them, please see: Incremental Backup or Differential Backup.

Automatic backup Windows 7 computer to external hard drive with Backup and Restore

If you insist on using built-in tool, you can learn how to backup Windows 7 to external hard drive with the following steps. 

1. Open Backup and Restore in Windows 7, you have two ways in the following:

#1: Use fast search. Type backup and restore in the search box and select it.

#2: Through Control Panel. Open "Control Panel", and click "System and Security" > "Backup and Restore". 

2. In the Backup and Restore (Windows 7), click "Set up backup".

Set Backup

3. Select external hard drive as backup destination. If it is not listed here, please reconnect it and click "Refresh" to recognize it.  

Select Backup Destination

4. Choose "Let Windows choose (recommended)" or "Let me choose" and click Next. 

Let Me Choose

5. In the Review your backup settings window, click Change schedule if you don't want to use the default settings, Every Sunday at 7:00 PM. It still supports Daily and Monthly. Then, click Save settings and run backup to execute this task. 

Start to Backup


You can automatic backup Windows 7 to external hard drive with AOMEI Backupper or Backup and Restore. In fact, the previous is not only helps you to automatically backup files, but more compatible in all aspects.

At first, it supports all the Windows systems. And it supports backing up files, system, partition or disk separately without human intervention. More so, you can enjoy multiple backup settings, not only daily/weekly/monthly backup, but also incremental backup, differential backup, automatic backup cleanup, etc.

Beside, it has many other features that can help you work well with your computer, like create bootable media, restore computer to different hardware, etc. To deploy image to multiple computers, try AOMEI Backupper Technician or TechPlus edition

Lily · Editor
Lily Green joined AOMEI in 2018 and has since become a professional in the areas of data protection and data transfer. She is committed to helping users protect their precious computer data and troubleshoot Windows system errors. She consistently stays vigilant about the latest trends in technology, guaranteeing that the given information aligned with the ongoing advancements in the field.