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Back up windows 8 or windows 8.1

Posted on 2014-11-30
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Last Modified: 2016-10-27
how to setup windows 8 or windows 8.1 to automatically backup windows 8 or 8.1 to a usb drive to restore to a different hard drive if needed on a timely scheduled basis
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Question by:starview
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Assisted Solution

by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 166 total points
ID: 40472674
You can go to Action Center, Recovery Options. In there is the ability to create a USB recovery drive in case Wimdows won't start. You can also back up the whole drive, although I do not. I back up data daily more often and can recover a drive crash with the Recovery DVD and the software and data.
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LVL 54

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by:Joe Winograd, EE MVE
Joe Winograd, EE MVE earned 167 total points
ID: 40472710
I use Casper to clone automatically every day to USB drives:
http://www.fssdev.com/products/casper/

It works on W7, W8, and W8.1, all in both 32-bit and 64-bit editions.

I run it every evening in the wee hours (it utilizes the Windows Task Scheduler to schedule jobs) on several machines to clone the hard drives (a mix of HDD, SSD, and hybrid). It has an intelligent cloning mechanism so that it copies only the necessary tracks. The first run takes a while, but after that, it's extremely fast. It can clone to the same size drive or to a larger one or even to a smaller one, as long as there is enough space on the smaller one to house the used (non-free) space from the larger one. It's not free, but it's reasonably priced and worth every penny.

Another well-regarded (also non-free) product is Acronis:
http://www.acronis.com/

I used it previously, but now prefer Casper.

If you're looking for something that is free, I've heard good things here at EE about these three:

http://clonezilla.org/
http://www.easeus.com/disk-copy/
http://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/

But I haven't tried them as I do all of my cloning now with Casper. Here's a 5-minute EE video Micro Tutorial, Cloning a Hard Drive with Casper, showing how to do it. As a disclaimer, I want to emphasize that I have no affiliation with this company and no financial interest in it whatsoever. I am simply a happy user/customer. Regards, Joe
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Maclean earned 167 total points
ID: 40472900
Have a look at DriveImage XML if other suggestions do not give you what you are looking for. They all sound like viable options however.

DriveImage XML is free, and you can schedule the backups via task scheduler to USB while system is running.

http://www.runtime.org/driveimage-xml.htm
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Author Closing Comment

by:starview
ID: 40473043
Thank you
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LVL 95

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40473417
@starview  - Thanks and I was happy to help.
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