By Teresa / Last update May 25, 2021

Why create backup for boot disk Windows 10?

Windows OS and your personal data could be vulnerable confronting hacker, virus, critical software error or hardware failure, and the system may fail or your data will be lost or deleted by mistake. To avoid such things, backup is the top choce, it can safeguard your irreplaceable and valuable data by making an exact copy of your system or files. 

In Windows 10, you can you have two options, backup files with File History, or create a complete system backup with Backup and Restore (Windows 7). You can choose it per your needs, but you have to know if you only backup specific folders in Windows 10, you still need to set your computer from scratch, such as, reinstall Windows 10 and necessary system files, drivers, install software you will use, etc. It will take you a lot of time to get your computer back to how it was.

Thus, you need not only a file backup, but also a full backup of your computer. And I will show you how to backup files or system in the following, pick one method you like.

Method 1: Backup boot disk in Windows 10 with built-in tools

The image backup feature in Windows 10 includes a bit-by-bit copy of the entire system. To create backup of boot disk in Windows 10, you might need to complete it into two separated way, backup files and create a system image. And when you restore the system image, the software only restore all events and personal data included in the image. 

The path to create a system image is to go Start > Control Panel > System and Security > File History (if there is no Control Panel icon under Start directory, then try to type it into Run and hit Enter).

In the lower left corner, click System Image Backup link. If you want to backup computer to external hard drive, please connect an external hard drive to your PC beforehand.

System Image Backup

Then, you will enter the Backup and Restore(Windows 7) window, click Create a system image.

Create  A System Image

Next, you will be asked to select a backup destination to store this image. Tick On a hard disk and select external hard drive, click Next. Also, you can choose to backup Windows 10 to network drive by using a network location as backup destination. 

Note the system image can only be used to restore your computer if your hard drive or computer stops working, and does not support restoring individual files.

Select Backup Destination

Here all the drives required to start Windows will be included, and you can also include other drives except for the backup destination. Click Next.

Backup Drives

Confirm all the backup settings and click Start Backup

Backup System

After the system image backup is created successfully, you will be asked to create a system repair disc, click Yes or No per your situation. It's suggested to create one, because it can help you boot computer when it fails.

Choose Dvd

But if you don't have CD/DVD or your computer does not support optical drive, you can choose to click No and then create  Windows 10 recovery disk with built-in recovery drive feature.

Create A Recovery Drive

The path to backup files in Windows 10 is to go Start > Settings > UPDATE & SECURITY > Backup

Then,  click Add a drive and select your external hard drive as backup drive. After that, the button Automatically back up my files will be toggled and it will backup all the files in libraries, desktop, favorites and contacts folders.

Add a Drive

If you want to backup specific folders, or set backup retention or frequency, click More options to add them. However, it will only backup files even if you add C drive folder to the backup directory.

Backup Options

That's all the steps to create backup for boot disk in Windows 10, backup system first and then backup files, it's complicated and time consuming. And the built-in tools, Windows Backup and Restore and File History, are not always working properly. For example, you may receive error messages during the process, such as, Windows backup keep failing, backup failed, File history does not recognize this drive, etc. 

As a matter of fact, Windows backup boot disk could be done through some powerful dedicated backup software, say AOMEI Backupper Standard. The feature, Disk Backup of this software, offers you one-button solution. No need to backup twice to protect the entire PC. And it supports schedule automatic backup and backup only changed files with incrementl or differential backup. In addition, it still supports restoring individual files from disk backup using its selective file restore  feature.

If you are tired of backing up boot disk in Windows 10 twice or want more advanced features, you could download AOMEI Backupper Standard to have a try right now. The Standard edition of aforementioned program is free for home and commercial use.

Download Freeware Win 10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Method 2: Backup boot disk in Windows 10 with AOMEI Backupper

Launch AOMEI Backupper Standard, then you will see its deep-blue screen. Click Disk Backup under Backup tap.

Disk Backup

In the Disk Backup window, click Add Disk and then you will see all the available disks, select the boot disk you want to backup and click Add

Select Disk

After selecting the boot disk, you will go back to the Disk Backup window. If you want to backup other disks, you could click + to add.

Then, click the second box and select the external hard drive you connect to your computer in advance.  

Select Backup Destination

That's almost done. You just need to set some backup settings and then click Start Backup.

Backup Options: you can set customized configuration by clicking this option, such as, comment on this task, enable email notification, use VSS technology, etc. 


Schedule: you can set backup mode (daily, weekly, and monthly) backup style (full backup, incremental backup, and differential backup) here. Note the scheduled differential backup is available on the professional version at least.

Schedule Settings General

Yes, after system image is created successfully, you can use it to restore system image when your computer crashes or hard disk damaged. 

However, to my surprise, it still can be a system image created for another computer. That's to say, if you create a system image on your computer with this software, you can use it to restore other computers, with the help of dissimilar hardware restore (supported by the professional version) feature. 

In addition, you can directly make drive bootable in Windows 10 using its Disk Clone or System Clone, depending the size of target disk and the items you want to backup. In the event of a disaster, you can boot your computer without restoring image file first. 

To sum up

To create backup for boot disk in Windows 10, you can use built-in tools to backup system and then files using different softwares. Also, you can choose to directly backup entire disk with a free yet professional backup software, we say AOMEI Backupper Standard, and it will be the priority choices for most users. It's easy and has more useful features, such as, daily incremental backup, weekly backup, differential backup, monthly backup, etc.