Windows 10 Backup Add A Drive Missing: Fix and Alternative

If your built-in backup feature cannot add a drive, don’t be nervous. Here are several ways to help you fix it. Additionally, a plan B is offered for you to make a backup for your data.


By Maggie Updated on November 10, 2023

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User case: Windows 10 Backup - No "Add a Drive" option

I upgraded my Toshiba laptop several months ago from Windows 7 to Windows 10. I recently went into the built-in backup in Windows 10 to use File History for Backups. There is no option to Add a Drive in the Settings -> Update & Security -> Backup section. When I click on More Options and Advanced Settings, nothing happens and nothing shows on the main part of the window.

I have both an external USB drive and a NAS that I can use but I cannot do anything if it does not allow me to do anything here. What is wrong? I see no one else having this issue when I search for it.

If you have the same Windows 10 backup add a drive missing issue, you can refer to the below possible solutions. Additionally, you can try another reliable backup software to backup your data.

Why is there ‘no usable drive found Windows 10 backup’?

1. It's common for every feature in Windows to have bugs. Occasionally, File History or Backup and Restore (Windows 7) might not properly detect a usable drive due to unknown errors. Most of the time, restarting the feature or your computer can resolve the issue.

2. If the system service supporting File History/ Backup and Restore (Windows 7) is disabled or malfunctions, it can hinder them from finding the connected drive for backup. Keep an eye on the system service associated with File History/ Backup and Restore (Windows 7) if the feature stops working.

3. Drive issues can also cause File History/ Backup and Restore (Windows 7) to malfunction. Typically, if the drive you use for backup is outdated or damaged, File History/ Backup and Restore (Windows 7) won't recognize the drive and will display a message like "no usable drives found."

How to fix Windows 10 backup add a drive missing

Here are several possible solutions might help you troubleshoot the Windows 10 backup cannot add drive issue.

# 1. Check Drive Connection

Ensure that the drive you want to use for backup is properly connected to your computer. If it's an external USB drive, check the USB cable and try connecting to a different USB port.

# 2. Drive Compatibility

Make sure the drive is compatible with Windows 10. Some older drives might not work well with newer operating systems. Check the drive's documentation or the manufacturer's website for compatibility information.

# 3. Drive Format

Ensure that the drive is formatted with a file system that Windows supports (such as NTFS). If the drive is using a different file system, you might need to reformat it to NTFS.

# 4. Windows Backup Service

Make sure the Windows Backup service is running.

Step 1. Open the Run box and typing services.msc in the Windows search bar,

Step 2. Then finding Windows Backup in the list, right-click on it and then choose Properties.

Step 3. Under the General tab, scroll down to select Automatic in the Startup type section.

Startup Type

# 5. Check the Device Manager

Check the Device Manager for any issues with the drive.

Step 1. Press Windows + X at the same time and choose Device Manager at the same time.

Step 2. Then navigate to the Disk drives category, and click to expand it. You can look for any warning symbols next to the drive. If there are issues, you might need to update the driver or troubleshoot further.

# 6. Security Software

Certain security software installed on your Windows 10 computer may access your removable device in the background. In such cases, it's advisable to temporarily disable these security programs and then attempt to safely eject the removable device again to check if the issue persists.

Rescue fix: use third-party software to backup your data

If you've tried the methods mentioned above without resolving the issue, the powerful free backup software – AOMEI Backupper Standard might be the solution. While Windows built-in backup tools can lead to various problems, fixing each issue individually can be troublesome. However, with AOMEI Backupper, these problems are less likely to bother you again. This software enables you to:

✧ you can backup files and folders, disks and partitions separately. Besides, this tool also supports system backup as well.

✧ Create incremental and differential backups to save time and storage space in your backup process. (note the differential backup can used in Pro version)

✧ Create backups to various storage locations, including cloud services, NAS, local disks, external hard drives, USB/DVD/CD, etc. If you have an AOMEI account, you can also back up files to AOMEI Cloud.

✧ -Perform backups for Windows PC operating systems (Windows 10/8.1/8/7/Vista/XP). If you need to backup Windows Server versions like 2008, 2012, 2016, 2019, etc., consider using AOMEI Backupper Server.

Now download this software and install on your computer. If you need backup files to external hard drive, make sure it has been connected to your computer correctly.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Step 1. Open AOMEI Backupper Standard and select Backup > File Backup.

File Backup

Step 2. Click Add Folder or Add File to add the files that you would like to backup.

Add Folders Files

Step 3. Select the external hard drive connected before as the destination path to save the Windows 10 file backup image file.

Select Destination

✿ Options: In this section, you can add comments, adjust the compression level for your backups. If you wish to encrypt your backups, consider upgrading to AOMEI Backupper Professional edition.
✿ Schedule: In the General tab, configure the backup frequency options such as daily, weekly, monthly, event triggers, or USB plug-in.
✿ Scheme: The software will automatically delete old backups according to the chosen scheme, a feature that proves helpful in conserving disk space and maintaining up-to-date backups (available in the paid version).

Step 4. Press Start Backup button to create Windows file backup.

Start Backup


When you encounter Windows 10 backup add a drive missing, there are various possible reasons for it. Here we suggest several possible solutions, and if you don’t want that troublesome, you can directly use AOMEI Backupper, the best backup and restore software to help you.

This software is an all-around data protection tool that enables you to migrate OS from HDD to better-performance SSD without reinstalling. Now download it to have a try.

Maggie · Editor
Maggie is a technical editor from AOMEI and troubleshoots technical problems against data protection. She has received professional and systematic technical training. With a focus on user experience, security, and problem-solving, she always puts herself in the readers' shoes and provides them with valuable technical insights.