By Lily / Last update March 31, 2022

Why should you backup external hard drive?

External hard drive is a kind of storage device which is separated from your machine. For some reasons, you may make use of external hard drive to store data:

● There is not enough space on your internal hard drive to store data, and you decide to store the files on an external hard drive.

● You want to store data on an external hard drive so that you can bring it everywhere. External hard drive is portable, and because of this, you can bring data on it everywhere and use it by plugging it into the machine. It is more convenient than bringing a computer or laptop.

Although external hard drive has so many sparking points, it faces a series of problems. It is tiny and portable, so it is easy to be stolen or lost; it may be broken in seconds due to the repeating “plug in” and “pull out” on different computers. Once the external hard drive gets in trouble, the data may disappear permanently. Thus, you should backup external hard drive.

What else, you may want to change the usage of your external hard drive by formatting it. How to keep the data safe? Backing up external hard drive before formatting is the answer.

How to backup external hard drive in Windows 11/10/8/7

For storing the backup images, you have many choices, such as the internal hard drive of your computer or another external hard drive. The problem is how to backup external hard drive. To solve the problem, here we highly recommend a free backup software AOMEI Backupper, which can help you backup external hard drive with a few steps. Before you do, you need to prepare for it:

  • The external hard drive you want to backup.
  • The storage device. It could be your internal hard drive, or another external hard drive like a USB flash drive or an SSD, etc. Ensure it has enough space to store the data on the external hard drive.
  • Download free AOMEI Backupper from the Download Page or using the download button below directly. Then, install it on your PC or laptop.
Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

After those preparations, you can follow the guidance below.

Step 1. Connect the external hard drive you want to backup to your computer. If you want to back it up to another external hard drive, connect the storage hard drive to the machine, too. Launch the program, click Backup -> Disk Backup.

Disk Backup

Step 2. You will move to the Disk Backup page. You can edit the task name to distinguish it from other backups. Then, you need to select the source disk and the destination path.

Add Disk

Step 3. Click Start Backup to launch the progress. When it’s done, click Finish to exit.


● If your storage device is small, you can try to compress the backup image in "Options".

● You can do a schedule backup, but the external hard drive should not be extracted while backing up. You can set it up in "Schedule Backup".

● If you want an easier way to create an image of your external hard drive, such as SSD, you could try the Disk Clone feature in this SSD cloning freeware.


This is about how to backup external hard drive by using AOMEI Backupper. Seriously, it should be the best way to backup external hard drive. You can use it free under Windows operating systems including Windows XP/Vista/7/8/10/11. Hope this could be helpful. 

Actually, AOMEI Backupper can do many other things for you to keep your data safe, for example, create system image backup and transfer files from one computer to another. But if you need more features like merging backup images or creating recovery environment, you need to upgrade to AOMEI Backupper Professional, which can be a better data protector than the Standard edition.