How to Backup BitLocker Recovery Key: Step-By-Step Guide

Want to backup BitLocker recovery key? This article provides a detailed tutorial for you! Finally recommends you backup your BitLocker encrypted drive to prevent accidental data loss.


By Miya Updated on September 8, 2023

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What Is BitLocker Recovery Key?

BitLocker, the encryption technology for Windows, safeguards your data from unauthorized access by encrypting your drive and requiring authentication factors before granting access. Under normal circumstances, BitLocker automatically unlocks upon successful sign-in to Windows.

However, if Windows detects a potential unauthorized attempt to access the drive, it will prompt for a BitLocker recovery key. It is crucial to backup BitLocker recovery key, as Microsoft support cannot provide or recreate it in case of loss. While the key is typically backed up when BitLocker is initially activated, it is advisable to create your own backup as an added precaution.

Note: Need help locating your BitLocker recovery key on a locked device? Refer to the guide titled Finding your BitLocker recovery key in Windows. Then you can use the following method to backup BitLocker recovery key in Windows 10

How to Backup BitLocker Recovery Key

In this section, we will provide you with detailed graphic tutorials to teach you how to backup BitLocker recovery key.

Step 1. To begin, click on the Windows Start button and enter BitLocker into the search bar.

Step 2. From the search results, choose the Manage BitLocker Control Panel app.

Step 3. Within the BitLocker app, locate and select the option to Back up your recovery key.

Backup Your Recovery Key

Step 4. Choose the location where you wish to back up the key:

Find Recovery Key

✪ Save to your Microsoft Account- This option will store the key in the Recovery Keys library of your Microsoft Account, allowing easy access from any computer in the future.

Note: If you're signed into a computer managed by your work or school, this may be labeled as Save to your Azure AD account instead.

✪ Save to a USB flash drive- If you have a USB flash drive available, you can save the key onto it. In the future, if your computer requires the key, simply insert the USB drive and follow the onscreen instructions. Since the key only occupies a small amount of space (a few KB), the drive does not need to be large.

Important: Avoid storing this USB flash drive containing the key together with your computer. If your computer were to be stolen, the thief would have access to the flash drive and could bypass BitLocker encryption, compromising your data security.

✪Save to a file- You have the option to save the recovery key as a plain text file on any device. If you need to access the key in the future, simply open the file with a text editor like Notepad or Microsoft Word to view it. Keep in mind that you won't be able to save the file to the BitLocker encrypted drive, so you may need to save it on a USB drive if there's no separate unencrypted volume on the device.

We recommend copying or moving that text file to your OneDrive Personal Vault for secure storage that can be conveniently accessed from any device if needed.

✪Print the recovery key- If you prefer a hard copy, you can print the recovery key.

Important: Keep the printed copy in a secure location separate from your computer. If both the computer and the printed recovery key were to be stolen, the thief could bypass BitLocker encryption, jeopardizing your data protection.

Step 5. Choose Finish.

Clone BitLocker Encrypted Drive to Protect Data

Cloning a BitLocker encrypted drive offers an extra layer of data backup, guaranteeing redundancy and protecting against potential data loss caused by hardware failures, accidental deletions, or unexpected events. If you require a BitLocker encrypted drive cloning solution, you can utilize a software called AOMEI Backupper Professional.

This professional cloning software is designed to meet your cloning needs, whether you're cloning from a smaller disk to a larger one or vice versa. It also allows you to clone any encrypted drive, ensuring data security throughout the process.

☂Intelligent cloning: It offers intelligent sector cloning, which selectively clones only the used sectors of the source disk. This feature enables you to clone a larger HDD to a smaller SSD if necessary.
Sector-by-sectorcloning: When copying an encrypted BitLocker partition, the sector-by-sector clone function is required. However, keep in mind that the destination drive must be at least as large as the source disk to ensure a successful clone.
☂Compatibility with multiple systems: AOMEI Backupper Professional supports various Windows PC operating systems, including Windows 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP/Vista, ensuring compatibility across different systems.

To get started, download and install AOMEI Backupper Professional on your computer. In case you are a Windows Server user, you can opt for AOMEI Backupper Server for your specific requirements.

Download Free TrialWin11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Step 1. Once it's open, navigate to the Clone tab and select Disk Clone.

Choose Disk Clone

Step 2. Choose the BitLocker encrypted drive as the source disk.

Choose Source Disk 2

Step 3. For the destination disk, select a different disk from the available options.

Choose Destination Unallocated HDD

Step 4. Once you have reviewed and confirmed your selected operations, proceed by clicking on the Start Clone button.

Disk Clone Preview Align SSD Checked

Additional Notes:
Edit Partition
: If the target disk is larger than the source disk, you have the flexibility to adjust the partition sizes accordingly.
❧SSD Alignment: In the case of an SSD being used as the target disk, you have the option to enable SSD Alignment. This feature enhances the reading and writing speed of the SSD, resulting in improved performance.


This article gives you an illustrated guide on how to back up BitLocker recovery key. And you can choose different backup paths according to your needs. Furthermore, this article provides an additional bonus tip for those seeking to clone a BitLocker encrypted drive.

AOMEI Backupper Professional, a reliable and user-friendly disk cloning software, can assist you in accomplishing your objectives with ease and efficiency. It is not only a disk cloning software, but also a professional backup software that can backup Windows program and files effortless! Feel free to download this software to explore its full range of capabilities.

Miya · Editor
Miya has an excellent insight and receives professional and systematic technical training since joining AOMEI. She has a comprehensive understanding of computer issues, aiming at helping users troubleshoot all kinds of problems. A lot of computer users around the world have found her articles very helpful!