By Delia / Last update September 24, 2021

Why automatic backup Windows 10 to external hard drive?

We do backups frequently in order to keep our precious data and information safer. Sometimes we backup files to NAS or cloud storage, backup files to OneDrive for instance. At times, we backup files to USB flash drive, portable drive or external hard drive as well. All these moves are in the consideration of files security. However, do you thinking of backing computer up to one of these places? Computer including operating system and all you created files also need to be protected.

Why do you need auto backup feature during computer backup? Actually, this doesn’t need to illustrate more because most people have realized its significance. We are busy with trivial or important businesses, so it is not uncommon to forget doing backup each day. Auto backup nicely solves this problem.

How to set up automatic backup to external hard drive in Windows 10?

To set up automatic backup task for Windows 10, you can turn to Backup and Restore (Windows 7) utility and File History in Windows 10. It is as easy as you auto backup files to external in Windows 7. Anyway, let’s take a look at how to configure automatic backup in Windows 10 step by step.

Backup Windows 10 to external hard drive automatically via built-in tool

Before you start, you may want to clear what kind of file you need to backup to external hard drive, because it relates to what utility you need to use. To backup Windows 10 system to external drive, Backup and Restore (Windows 7) is workable. To backup files that created by your own, File History is what you need. Following will show you how to set up automatic backup with Backup and Restore (Windows 7) in Windows 10.

1. Connect the external drive to Windows 10 and make sure it is detected. Head to Settings > Update & Security > Backup > go to Backup and Restore (Windows 7). Click on Set up backup on the right side.

Set up backup

2. In Where to backup window, choose your external hard drive. Click Next.

Where to backup

3. Let Windows choose what to backup or decide by you. It is suggested to click Let me choose and check System drive option.

What to backup

4. At Review backup settings window, you’ll see Schedule option. You can keep default settings or Change schedule. Then click Save settings and run backup.

Save settings

It may not seem difficult to auto backup Windows 10 to external drive, but if you have actually done it, you may find various errors in the backup process. And for target devices with limited space, Windows Backup and Restore also lacks a feature to automatically delete old backups.

So if you want to regularly back up your entire operating system or hard drive to an external hard drive, you may want to try the powerful software AOMEI Backupper Professional.

It supports all brands of PCs running Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, etc. With it, you can decide whether to backup files, partitions, system or disk, choose compression level, schedule daily/weekly/monthly backup, and set up a retention policy to save storage space.

In addition, this software provides event-trigger (like startup or shutdown) and usb plug-in options to help you auto execute backup task intelligently. Download the free trial to have a try:

Download Free Trial Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP/Vista
Secure Download

Windows 10 auto backup to external drive in better way

Step 1. Connect the external hard drive to your computer. If you already did, install and launch AOMEI Backupper Professional. Go Backup > Disk Backup. To automatic backup files to external drive in Windows 10, try File Backup.

Disk Backup

Step 2. Select the disk that contains OS as the source disk.

Add Disk

Step 3. Select the external hard drive as the destination disk.

Backup to PC

Step 4. Click Schedule to configure backup frequency. Full Backup, Incremental Backup and Differential Backup is also available in Advanced option.

Schedule Settings General

Step 5. Click Options to set password for backup images as well as other stuffs if you wish.

Backup Settings General

Step 6. It is important that the software will delete redundant backup images for you to save storage room because auto backup creates lots of images. Click Scheme to configure.

Enable Backup Scheme

Step 7. Click Start Backup after all configurations.


Two ways to solve how to automatic backup Windows 10 to external hard drive are illustrated. AOMEI Backupper completes this auto backup task in several steps. If you look through this software, you’ll find more helpful features that can solve your daily practical issues. 

For example, it's still one of the best free SSD cloning software, which allows you to replace HDD with SSD in desktop directly using Disk Clone feature. In addition, the Create a bootable rescue media feature in Utilities tap allows you to boot your computer again when it is failed. Thus it is good to make one bootable device beforehand.