Having a backup of important and valuable data is a must in today’s volatile digital world. Although a lot of people are now switching to cloud services like OneDrive, Dropbox and Google Drive, it is still a good idea to make a physical, local backup just in case. One of the quickest and easiest ways to do so is using the Windows File History tool. If you have used the tool before and want to delete older file versions in favor of new ones, this guide will show you how. If you've never tried File History before, you'll learn how to set it up.
Microsoft has made it super easy to make a backup of data stored on your Windows 10 PC. Using an inbuilt tool called File History you can quickly and easily create a backup of important data on your system. To find the tool go to Settings > Update and Security > Backup. Next connect an external drive to your system, a USB stick or HDD for example. Once you have a device connected, flip the toggle under Backup to On, then click More Options.
Here you have two options at your disposal, Backup Up My Files and Keep My Backups. Within each of the drop-down menus, you will be able to find adjustable settings, all of which you will need to set to your own personal preferences. When you have your settings configure, scroll down a little and add the folders you wish to backup. Windows will then follow your set instructions and backup your specified data.
How to Delete Older Versions of Files using the Windows File History Tool.
If you have been using the File History tool for quite some time and would like to remove all the older file versions, you will need to do the following. To begin, open the Control Panel and go to the following location: File History > Advanced Settings.
On this screen click Clean Up Versions, then select the time period you wish to remove files from. Again, the option you choose here is completely up to you.
Upon clicking Clean Up Windows will proceed to remove all the files from prior to your choice. If you have a large amount of data stored on your backup device, you may have to wait a while for the process to conclude.
Note: If you want more information on file histories, click the option under event logs.
Alternatively, an even easier way to backup information from your computer is to just copy and paste the content to another drive or USB. This is far quicker and very easy but won’t give you the option to automatically manage backups whenever your external device is connected. Everything will need to be handled manually. Another good backup tool/utility you can use is Google Backup and Sync, which we also have a guide for here.