Backup computer files, in the same time it takes you to save a file.

It is actually quite easy to backup computer files.  You will need to have some portable storage, like a USB drive, an external hard drive, a computer backup drive, or if you like you can burn the files you wish to keep to a CD or a DVD.

  • Step 1 - The first thing we need to do is make a list of all the computer programs that we use.
  • Step 2 - Open up each program, one at a time, click on file open, and see where the default location that program looks to get it's files.  Make a note of each location for each program.
  • Step 3 - Decide which location on your computer you would like to have all of your files located.  I will use My Documents in this example.
  • Step 4 - Open up My Documents, create a folder named after each program that you would like to backup.
  • Step 5 - Move all the files that are scattered all over your computer in the folder structure you just made.  For our example, I'll move all my files to My Documents/Word/files here.  Repeat this step for every other program.


We are going to set up all your files in a way they are really easy to backup in the future. Copy and paste easy.

Great, now that your folder setup is all complete, any time you would like to backup your computer files, simply copy and paste to your portable storage.  If you are asked to replace this file with a newer file say yes.

If you like, you can also use a batch file to automatically do the backup for you.  As long as the folder structure stays the same where you save all your files, a simple one line xcopy command can be used to do all your backup with a simple click.  My backup command is simply xcopy C:\backup\*.* d:\ /d /e /v /y /h  which will copy the folder structure, and only new or different files not everything making faster.

I backup computer files about once per week, at the end of the day or when I'm on my way out.  Copy, paste, click yes to replace and you're done, now just let the computer do the work.

To keep this folder structure make sure now when you save files in any programs you use, save them to the new location inside My Documents. After you do this for each program once, it should automatically default to this directory.

Go from Backup Computer Files to the Computer Backup
Learn how to build your own computer

First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life