By Ivy / Last update December 13, 2021


Backup and Restore in Windows 7/8/10

Backup and Restore is a backup utility using Volume Shadow Copy Service(VSS) in Windows Vista, 7, 8 and 10 that allows you to create backups to restore your files and Windows operating system, etc. It supports two different types of backup: file backup (saved to ZIP files) and system image (full system backup, including Windows OS, data volumes, saved in a VHD file). By the way, another Windows backup command line utility - WBAdmin could be used in Windows PCs and Servers OS.

How to get access to Backup and Restore in Windows 7/8/10? follow the below instructions to open this Windows backup software: Click Start -> Control Panel -> System and Maintenance (or System and Security) -> Backup and Restore (Windows 7).

What does Windows7 Backup and Restore actually backup? In general, the Windows 7 Backup and Restore backup Windows operating system, system settings, individual folders, libraries, and drives that you want to backup to another location, like local disk, external hard drive, CD/DVD, USB flash drive, network locations.

Note: Windows 7 Backup and Restore could not backup the files: program files, files stored in FAT file system, files stored in Recycle Bin, Temporary files on drives smaller than 1 GB.

Today, we are going to introduce you about how to do Windows 7 backup and recovery using Windows 7 Backup and Restore in this article.

How to Create Windows 7 Backup Image?

If you have never used it before, click Set up backup to create a new full backup for your computer; If you created before, you could create another backup, or delete old backups to manage space for your hard disk. To protect your data, we highly recommend that you save the Windows 7 backup image to external hard drive that can hold at least 200GB.

Now, let’s set up a backup to create Windows 7 backup to external hard drive on a regular schedule:

1. Click Set up backup to open Windows Backup.

Set Up Backup

2. Select an external hard drive to save the Windows 7 backup.

Select Backup

3. Tick Let me choose option, and then hit Next.

Select Backup Files

4. Choose the files or drives that you want to backup, click Next.

Tip: You could uncheck the Include a system image of drives: (C:) to backup your data files only. The system image could restore your computer if your computer crashes.

5. Review your backup settings and click Save settings and run backup button.

Start To Backup

★ Tips:
To change the schedule time as you want, click Change Schedule to run daily, weekly, monthly at a specific time. You might need insert CD/DVD to creat
e a system repair disc
or Windows 7 installation disc to restore a system image.
If you run the Windows 7 backup on a schedule, you could turn off the schedule with Turn off schedule option if required.

After the backup finished, your destination disk will get a folder named WindowsImageBackup contains the .VHD backup file. Now you could do the Windows 7 restore from backup created here.

Create Windows 7 System Image

If you have tick the Include a system image of drives: (C:) in the above step 4, then you have backed up Windows 7 operating system. Or you have to create a system image for Windows 7:

1. Click Create a system image at the left panel.

Windows 7 Create A System Image

2. Select a destination to save the backup, and click Next.

Create A System Image Select Destination For Backup

3. Confirm your backup settings, and click Start Backup.

Confirm Backup Settings Create A System Image

★ Tip: If you have created a system image, this operation will overwrite any Windows 7 system images.

How to Do Windows 7 System Image Restore?

It’s easy to do system image recovery in Windows 7. Please connect the external hard drive contains the Windows 7 system image, then follow the steps to restore:

1. Open Windows 7 Backup and Restore, click Restore my files button.

Restore My Files

2. Click Browse for files or Browse for folders and choose the Windows 7 backup image to restore, click Next.

Browse For Folders

3. Select the destination to restore: In the original location, or In the following location, and then click Restore.


★ Tips:
If you don’t want to overwrite the original files/folders, select other location to restore. Otherwise, choose In the original location.
Does Windows backup restore programs? The answer is no.
If you just want to all your data files, click Restore all users’ files.
A system image can be used to restore Windows 7 computer if it stops working. However, you can’t choose individual items to restore.

Besides, you could restore windows 7 backup to Windows 10. open Backup and Restore (Windows 7) in Windows 10 computer, then tap the Select another backup to restore files from and choose the Windows 7 image backup file to restore. Furthermore, you can click Browse network location… to choose the Windows 7 backup saved on the network. 

Free Windows 7 Backup and Restore Software - AOMEI Backupper

Apart from this Windows built in backup software, another free Windows 7 backup and restore software - AOMEI backupper Standard will help you backup and restore in Windows 7 easily and is available for Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10. System backup, disk backup, partition backup, file backup are supported in AOMEI Backupper Standard.

Now please download AOMEI Backupper Standard, and we will guide you through the detailed steps to create Windows 7 system image, including Windows 7 OS, installed programs, settings, drivers, etc:

Download Freeware Win 10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

1. Run AOMEI Backupper Standard after the installation, click Backup -> System Backup.

System Backup

2. Select a NAS or network location to save the Windows 7 system image file.

Select A Network Location

★ Tip: The following destination supported in AOMEI Backupper includes local disk, external hard drive, USB flash drive, SSD, CD/DVD, NAS, network share, etc.

3. Tap Start Backup button to create a system image for Windows 7.

Start Backup To NAS

★ Tips:
✿ Options: this option will help you to comment, split, compress encrypt(paid) the backup image, use VSS, sector by sector backup, enable email notification to get noticed after backing up.
✿ Schedule: you could set the Windows 7 system image backup run daily, weekly or monthly, event triggers, or USB plug in. The last two options are premium features, please upgrade to AOMEI Backupper Professional or higher to enjoy.
✿ Scheme: Delete old backups automatically to manage your disk space (premium feature) while the backups over the number to retain.

After the backup finished, you will get a Windows 7 system image, suffix with .adi, on your destination path. Besides, to manage your hard disk space, AOMEI Backupper Professional provides you with incremental and differential backup to backup the changed and modified files since the last (full) backup. You could restore individual files from the system image, or restore to dissimilar hardware computer.

Enable AOMEI Backupper Recovery Environment

Now, please enable AOMEI Backupper recovery environment to Windows boot option to boot the unbootable computer to restore Windows 7 computer if the system refuse to boot: Tools > Recovery Environment > Tick Enable the boot option of AOMEI Backupper recovery environment > OK.

Tools Recovery Environment

Windows 7 System Image Restore

To perform system image recovery in Windows 7, please follow the steps:

1. Enter Windows boot menu and choose Enter into AOMEI Backupper. It will bring up the AOMEI Backupper interface.

2. Click Restore > Select Image File to choose Windows 7 system image.

3. Tick Restore this system backup option, and hit Next >>.

Restore Entire Backup or Partition

4. Press Start Restore >>.

Windows 7 System Image Restore

It’s quite easy to restore Windows 7 system image, right? To selective file restore, you could explore the Windows 7 system image and copy and paste to restore individual files.

Summing Up

Compared with Windows 7 Backup and Restore, AOMEI Backupper Standard is more flexible to use and provides you more powerful features to protect your data, like create disk image, upgrade HDD to SSD easily.

Besides, AOMEI Backupper Professional offers system clone feature to migrate Windows 10 to SSD without reinstalling Windows and programs. For server users, please try AOMEI Backupper Server to enjoy more advanced features, like command line backup/restore/clone, dynamic disk volume clone/backup/restore, RAID backup, etc.