Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Backup to External HD

  1. #1

    Backup to External HD


    I just did a backup (using File History) of files to an external HD. When I looked in the Folders on the HD, there were multiple copies of the same files; some with different dates, and others with the same dates but different ?file numbers. Can anyone tell me how to do a backup so that files are not duplicated. I'd also like to have files with changes overwrite the old file, provided that I haven't the file name. Thanks.

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  2. #2


    Posts : 22,577
    64-bit Windows 10


    Hello Eweingarden,

    It depends on how often you set File History to save copies of the files at step 7B in the tutorial below. If you like, you can change this at anytime.

    In addition, you might also set for how long to "keep saved versions", and the "size of offline cache" in the same step 7.

    File History - How to Use in Windows 8

    Hope this helps,
    Shawn
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Thanks for directing me to the tutorial. My only question at this point is, when you set a time limit for removing old versions of a file, does the File History recognize when there is only one version of the file and not remove it? Logic would say yes, but I just want to make sure. Thanks.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 22,577
    64-bit Windows 10


    You're most welcome.

    Yes, that's correct. The most recent copy saved by File History will never be automatically deleted.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    I'm getting closer in my understanding of the File History. I did another backup today and when I went looking for the data on my external HD, I had to go about ten layers deep into the file structure. The tutorial shows only a few layers: (selected drive)\File History\(user-name)\(computer-name)\Data. There are additional layers such as Configuration, C, $OF, Users, my name, Contacts; then I finally get into Documents.

    Is there a way to clean up this lengthy structure, or, are all the layers necessary? Thanks.
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  6. #6


    Posts : 22,577
    64-bit Windows 10


    I'm afraid not. That's how File History saves it.

    I only included up to the Data folder location since it branches off from there, but I'll update it to include C\Users at the end.

    I'm not sure what the $OF folder is for, but everything in it is also included in the Favorites folder in other C\Users\(user-name)\Favorites location.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Got it. Thanks again.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Posts : 22,577
    64-bit Windows 10


    You're welcome.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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