How to manage hard drive space used by windows 7 backup and restore

You will find the 3 solutions to manage backup disk space to fix Windows backup disk full in this article, please keep reading and find the suitable way for you.

By Delia / Last update June 15, 2022

The Necessity to Manage Backup Disk Space in Windows

Nowadays, people tend to use computers for all kinds of matters and to store various files, data protection is thus becoming increasingly important. For some particularly valuable data, users will even set up schedules for frequent backups. Sooner or later, the backup disk will be filled up and we may see a message like this:

This is not the only problem, however. Apart from affecting the subsequent backups, a lack of disk space can also cause the computer to run slower and slower, or even freeze up frequently.

At this time, you could clean up the hard drive, and delete some useless backup to free up space. But it’s a pain to do it manually each time. For most users, it is best to manage backup disk space intelligently with the backup solution itself. Next I will describe how to manage backup disk space using Windows backup solutions.

How to Manage Backup Disk Space in Windows 11/10/8/7

Windows has two well known backup methods, File History (Way 1) and Backup and Restore (Way 2), the former is more of an automatic backup solution of important folders and the latter allows you to freely backup libraries, volumes, system images or the entire hard drive.

Whichever you choose, you will find a bundled disk management option that allows you to modify the settings for saving your backup files. This way, old backups can be automatically deleted to free up your backup disk space.

However, when you get right down to it, you will find that the cleanup options for both methods are not flexible enough, especially Backup and Restore, which is commonly used for backing up large data. Therefore, you may also consider an alternative in Way 3 as a more efficient data backup and disk space management solution.

Way 1. Delete Older Backup Versions with File History

If you backup files with File History, you could do the following to manage Windows backup disk space.

1. Input backup settings in Windows 10 search box, and choose Backup Settings and hit Enter.

2. Click More Options under Back up using File History section.

3. Scroll down to the bottom, and choose See advanced settings.

4. Choose Advanced settings at the left panel.

5. Click Clean up versions at the Versions section.

6. Choose delete method at the Delete files field, click Clean up to manage backup disk space.

Way 2. Manage Backup Disk Space with Windows Backup and Restore

If you use Backup and Restore to backup files, and encounter Check backup disk space notice like the below.

1. Please click Options, and choose Manage backup disk space, or you could click Manage space at the Back-up section.

2. Click View backups. , select the backups you would like to delete, press Delete Windows 10 backup files to free up space. Or you can click Change Settings. to configure the backup retention policy.

3. By change settings, you can Let Windows manage the sapce used for backup history (maximum 150.00 GB), or Keep only the latest system image and minimize space used by backup to let Windows delete old backups automatically and save only one system image. Make your choice and click OK to save the change.

As you can see, the options provided by Windows Backup and Restore are quite limited, with which you can still not manage backup disk space flexibly and efficiently. In fact, there are many users reporting that Windows Backup not managing space correctly. To delete unnecessary backups automatically and manage backup space efficiently, you may try the next method.

Way 3. Manage Backup Disk Space Flexibly with AOMEI Backupper

The best Windows backup software – AOMEI Backupper Professional will make things easier to manage backup disk space. It supports file backup, folder backup, disk backup, system backup, partition backup, schedule backup, full backup, incremental and differential backup. And most importantly, it allows you to automatically delete old backups while the backups exceeds the number you specified.

Please download AOMEI Backupper Professional 30 day free trial to have a try:

Here is how to manage backup disk space in Windows 10 computer with AOMEI Backupper (take Windows 10 system image for example):

1. Execute AOMEI Backupper Professional, choose System Backup at the Backup tab. Or other backups you want, Disk Backup, Partition Backup, etc.

2. Choose a destination for Windows 10 system image file.

3. Tap Schedule Backup to set up the backup intervals, Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Event triggers, or USB plug in.

4. Hit Backup Scheme at the bottom left corner, tap to Enable Automatic Backup Cleanup, configure the schemes to delete old backup images automatically By quantity, By time, By daily/weekly/monthly or By space, then click OK.

5. Press Start Backup >> button to create Windows 10 system image and manage backup disk space easily.

After you create multiple backups, it will automatically delete your old system images once the backups over the number you specified. Then, you could avoid the Windows 10 backup disk full error.

The Epilogue

Manage backup disk space is not difficult for you according to the step-by-step guide. There are 3 ways to manage Windows backup disk space.

By the way, AOMEI Backupper could create incremental and differential backup to only backup changed files since the last (full) backup, these two backup types could help you save Windows backup disk space easily.

If you would like to protect unlimited PCs and Servers, please try AOMEI Backupper Technician Plus.

Windows 7 offers a much better utility for backing up your computer than previous versions of Windows, but sometimes it might take up too much disk space. Here we take a look at how to get some space back by deleting older backups.

Manage Backup Size

First click on Start and enter backup and restore in the search box and hit Enter.

Then under the Backup section click on Manage Space.

In the Manage Windows Backup disk space screen click on View Backups under the Data file backup section.

A list of backups for different time periods will show up. You can delete older ones and just keep the most current backup. This will free up a lot of space if you have several backups periods stored.

You will get a message making sure you want to delete the backup. If you delete the most recent backup, there is an option to delete it and run the backup again so everything is current.

Now that we’ve been able to free up some space, let’s take a look at how to keep only the most recent system image stored. Go back to the Manage Windows Backup disk space window we were at previously and this time click on Change settings which is under the System image section.

Now select Keep only the latest system image and minimize space used by backup then click Ok.


Backing up your system is extremely important, especially if you have a lot of sensitive data and important files. If you allow Windows to manage space, it will automatically save backup periods but won’t take up more than 30% of space on the backup disk. When it gets to the 30% range it will start deleting older system images. Use these tips if you use Windows Backup and Restore and need more room on the backup disk. First create more space by manually deleting the older backups manually, then have it only save the most recent backups.

Lowell is the founder and CEO of How-To Geek. He’s been running the show since creating the site back in 2006. Over the last decade, Lowell has personally written more than 1000 articles which have been viewed by over 250 million people. Prior to starting How-To Geek, Lowell spent 15 years working in IT doing consulting, cybersecurity, database management, and programming work. Read more.

Tired of the System Restore feature in Windows 7 using up way too much of your drive space? You can easily tweak it with a simple slider bar, you just need to know where to look.

Windows Vista made doing the same thing really difficult… you had to use a command line hack to force Vista to stop using so much space. Windows 7 makes it really easy.

Tweak System Restore Disk Usage

Start by right-clicking on the Computer icon, and going to Properties, which will take you into the System panel.

Then click on the link on the left-hand side for System protection.

Now you should be looking at the System Protection tab, where you can create a restore point, use System Restore, or configure your settings. You’ll want to click on the drive you want to tweak in the list, and then click the Configure button.

Now you should be in the Configure screen for the drive you selected above, where you can turn off system protection entirely, delete all but the latest restore points, change it to only restore files (and not settings), or drag the slider to use more or less space.

You should probably leave a decent amount of space—System Restore is a very nice feature that can help you out of a jam when your computer stops working.

Alternate Plan: Just Clean Up Old Restore Points

If you’d rather not mess with the amount of space allotted to System Restore, you can at least clean up all the rest of the old restore points (except for the last one). This will still keep you safe, but free up a lot of drive space.

Open up Disk Cleanup, then click on “Clean up system files” to re-open Disk Cleanup in administrator mode (or run it as administrator in the first place).

Head over to the More Options tab, and then click the Clean up button.

All the old restore points should be gone, and you’ll likely have a lot more disk space.

about places i went, food i’ve taken and pictures worth sharing.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Manage Windows 7 Backup and Restore

By now, if you are using Windows 7, you proberly notice that your Hard Drive capacity is always used by some other program or God knows what … 500GB is not enough … 1TB is also not enough …

What has been eating up your free space . Even you have deleted files or folders or even uninstall some old program or games that you rarely used … but ends up … still a lot of disk spaced being used up with Windows …

Either you notice or you do not notice it YET …

Anyway … below are the remedy … I betcha it will free up minimum 50GB, yes …. 50,000MB … anytime …

Here is my pileup …

Here is my problem ….

I have since deleted FireFox and Real Player …

Below a snapshot of what program that are taking up my disk space

From the above screenshot … you will notice, I’m not the typical Joe that will just download whatever that is on my way … I’m a careful computer user … still … my C Drive still used up 50GB of data .. and just left 7GB for me to workaround with … this is bad . …

the culprit … is the Windows 7 Backup and Restore program …

Below are STEP BY STEP no nonsense and no advertisement procedure to really manage it like a PRO .

How to manage hard drive space used by Windows 7 backup and restore program

Windows 7 offers a much better utility for backing up your computer than previous versions of Windows, but sometimes it might take up too much disk space. Here we take a look at how to get some space back by deleting older backups.

Manage Backup Size

First click on Start and enter backup and restore in the search box and hit Enter.

Then under the Backup section click on Manage Space.

In the Manage Windows Backup disk space screen click on View Backups under the Data file backup section.

A list of backups for different time periods will show up. You can delete older ones and just keep the most current backup. This will free up a lot of space if you have several backups periods stored.

You will get a message making sure you want to delete the backup. If you delete the most recent backup, there is an option to delete it and run the backup again so everything is current.

Now that we’ve been able to free up some space, let’s take a look at how to keep only the most recent system image stored. Go back to the Manage Windows Backup disk space window we were at previously and this time click on Change settings which is under the System image section.

Now select Keep only the latest system image and minimize space used by backup then click Ok.


Backing up your system is extremely important, especially if you have a lot of sensitive data and important files. If you allow Windows to manage space, it will automatically save backup periods but won’t take up more than 30% of space on the backup disk. When it gets to the 30% range it will start deleting older system images. Use these tips if you use Windows Backup and Restore and need more room on the backup disk. First create more space by manually deleting the older backups manually, then have it only save the most recent backups.

Courtesy of

Yes … I’m lazy to re-write it … at least I’m HONEST … cos I’m bohausiaw

Windows 7 comes with an improved built-in backup facility that you can use. This article is a short guide about the same.

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Windows 7 comes with an improved built-in backup facility that you can use. This article is a short guide about the same.

Windows 7, in many ways, is the best version of the operating system, launched by Microsoft so far. You can see the extra effort that they have taken to make it a complete operating system, in all respects, after the Vista fiasco.

The company has significantly enhanced and added the utilities that come with it. It includes a free antivirus program in the form of Windows Security Essentials and a better inbuilt backup system, that even lets you create a system repair disc.

The advantages of the OS are many and having an inbuilt well-equipped backup utility, that is good enough to compete with the best backup programs in the market, is one of them.

The new backup program is extremely reliable and carries out its scheduled job quietly in the background. It can be programmed to back up specific folders that need to be protected. Copy and back up your most important folders on the hard drive automatically, by programming the backup software.


Like most Windows programs, setting the scheduled backup is quite a simple exercise. Here is a step wise guide to scheduling.

Right Click On Drive to Select Properties Option

To begin configuring, right click on the drive to be backed up in ‘My Computer’ and click on the properties option. Select the ‘Tools’ tab and then click on the ‘Back up now’ button. A window will open, with a ‘Set up Backup’ option. Click on it.

Select Drive to Store Backup

Next step in setting Windows 7 backup is to select the drive in which the files will be stored. Windows will scan and recommend you a drive which you can go for, or select some other.

Choosing the Files to Be Backed Up

You will be given an option to choose the files that you want to be backed up or you could let Windows choose them for you. If Windows is given the option to choose on its own, it will create a system image that can be used to restore functionality, in case the installed system crashes.

Alternatively, you can choose your own personal documents that need to be saved, in a backup. Once you select the files you need to back up, you can review your settings for the same.


In the ‘review backup’ window that opens, you get an option to set the daily schedule. To set it, click on the ‘Change schedule option’. You can select how often you want the backup function to run, on what day, and on what time. With all that set, click on the ‘ok’ option, to revert to the review window.

To start running the backup, click on ‘Save settings and run backup’ option. It will take some time, depending on the number and size of files you have selected to be backed up. For 10 GB of data, it could take around 8 minutes. To restore any files from backup, just click on the file or folder and follow instructions.

Delete unwanted backup and control the allocation of hard drive space by using the ‘manage backup’ option from the program. Create a system repair disc, once you back up Windows 7 system files. It can then be burned onto a DVD to create a system repair disc. This functionality is one of the main advantages of Windows 7 over Vista, which did not have it.

All you need to do is follow through the backup wizard and go ahead. Having personally used the utility for quite some time now, we can safely say that it is one of the best and most reliable in the business.

Not many are aware that it is possible to create Virtual Hard Drive images in Windows 7. Backing up your data is important and this article will detail how to backup data to a Virtual Hard Drive (VHD) or hard drive partition. Creating the Drive is the first step, but the backup is the crucial point. It is best to use an external Hard Drive for backup, but this method can be easily as effective, as this data can be transferred to an external hard drive later. This is an especially useful feature for a network. All data from all computers and devices on a given network can be stored on a Windows 7 VHD. In this way, multiple computers can have their backup on one computer in the network and then all computers on the network can consolidate backups to a single external hard drive backup. This is useful for single PC users as well.

First, a quick review of creating a hard drive partition is demonstrated. To begin, go to Start > Right-click Computer > Manage. Or, enter computer into the run and search box and select Computer Management from the available options.

Click on Storage > Disk Management. Choose the drive that you want to partition. In this example, there is only one hard drive to choose. It is a 1TB hard drive with an NTFS files system and plenty of space to allow for a significant partition if necessary.

Here, the amount of shrink space entered is 100,000 MB, or 100 GB. This is a decent size for a VHD and it can be altered in the future. Click Shrink when done.

Select this unallocated space and right-click and choose New Simple Volume. The setup Wizard will appear. Follow the steps and fill in the partition size. You should see the VHD listed when you double-click Computer. In this example, it is named “Archive”.

Now that the VHD image has been created and named, the next step is to choose the data to backup. You may drag and drop as many files as the space will allow. With a partition of this size, a large amount of data can be stored over time. The computer used in this example shares data with other PCs on a remote network. Using Windows 7 Backup and Restore, you can backup all data on the PC easily and save yourself the trouble of dragging and dropping.

Backup to Virtual Hard Drive

To use the new VHD for a complete Backup and Restore, follow these steps:

Open the Control Panel and choose System and Security. Click “Back up your computer”. You will then see this option:

Select Options in the Check backup settings then click Change Backup Settings and you will see this window representing all drives. Select the new VHD as the backup Volume by clicking on it and then click Next.

Notice that Windows 7 warns that this drive is on the physical disk as your system drive. This warning is there because this is not the ideal space for a final backup. It is rather easy to transfer the data from the VHD to an external hard drive at a later time as often as needed.

To select specific documents, rather than a full backup, highlight “Let me choose”. To allow a full backup, highlight “Let Windows choose”.

You can set a schedule for the backup to occur at regular intervals but always be sure to make a final backup on an external hard drive. On a network this is particularly useful. You can, for example, backup a shared network folder on a weekly basis and ensure that shared network files are continually backed up. Set it any way you like.

Here’s how to find your drive’s capacity, used space, or free space

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What to Know

  • Checking free space on a drive is helpful if you suspect it’s filling up or you’re getting random error messages.
  • This PC, Computer, or My Computer (depending on your OS), find the drive, right-click, and choose Properties.
  • Follow the same steps for hard drives as well as network drives and external drives like flash drives.

You can’t just add stuff to a drive forever, be it your main hard drive, the little flash drive in your pocket, or the giant external hard drive on your desk.

Even an arguably humongous 16 TB hard disk has a limit: 16 TB! As crazy as it sounds, it, too, can fill up. True, it’ll take two million high-quality photos to do it, but “only” about 150 feature-length 4K movies.

Performance Suffers on a Full Hard Drive

Regardless, you get the idea—you may need to check the free space on a drive from time to time, especially if it starts to slow down or act funny, which is very often the not-so-clear consequence of too much stuff in a single place.

Unfortunately, especially in Windows operating systems, you don’t get a friendly “Hey, your hard drive is almost full!” warning. Instead, you get strange behavior, cryptic error messages, or serious problems like a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD).

How to Check Free Hard Drive Space in Windows

Fortunately, it’s super easy to check how much free space you have on any of your drives, and it only takes a minute or two.

Maddy Price / Lifewire

These steps work for Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP.

In Windows 11 or Windows 10, select the Start button, followed by File Explorer (the small folder icon). If you don’t see it, check under the All apps or Windows System folder, or type file explorer into the search box.

In Windows 8 or Windows 10, search for this pc and then select This PC.

In Windows 7 or Windows Vista, select the Start button, followed by Computer.

In Windows XP, go to Start and then My Computer.

On the left-hand side of File Explorer or Windows Explorer (depending on your version of Windows), make sure This PC, Computer, or My Computer is selected (again, based on your version of Windows).

If you don’t see anything on the left side of this screen, open the View menu and enable the Navigation pane. In older versions of Windows, go instead to Organize > Layout > Navigation Pane (7 and Vista), or View > Explorer Bar > Folders (XP).

On the right-hand side, find the drive on which you want to know how much free space is left.

In Windows 11/10/8, all storage devices are listed in the Devices and drives area. In Windows 7/Vista/XP, Hard Disk Drives and Devices with Removable Storage are listed separately.

In newer versions of Windows, you can see right under the drive listing how much free space is left on it, as well as the total size of the drive, in a format like this:

If that’s all you need to know then you’re done! However, there is a bit more information about your drive’s capacity buried just a bit deeper:

To see more, right-click or tap-and-hold the drive you want more storage space information on, and then choose Properties.

In the General tab, you’ll see all the important details about the storage device you’re looking at, reported in bytes as well as rounded GB. free space included:

  • Used space: This is the sum total of every piece of data on this device.
  • Free space: This is the difference in the total formatted capacity of the device and the sum total of every piece of data being stored on it. This number indicates how much more storage you’re allowed to fill.
  • Capacity: This is the total formatted capacity of the drive.
  • Also there is a pie graph, showing used vs free space on the drive, helpful for visualizing how much space you’re using on this hard drive or other device.

You should now know exactly how much hard drive space is available on your computer. If you’re running low, delete files you don’t need or move them to a different hard drive that has more free space.

How to Check Free Hard Drive Space Using Command Prompt

Another way to check free space is with Command Prompt. The results aren’t as easy to read because the values are represented in bytes instead of gigabytes, but it’s still possible with this command:

How Much Free Space Do You Need?

Microsoft has historically recommended that to avoid problems, you should leave at least 100 MB of free space on whatever drive you have Windows installed on. However, because we’ve seen issues at levels higher than 100 MB, we have always recommended 10 percent free space instead.

Calculate 10 Percent Free Space on Windows PC

To calculate 10 percent free space, just take the number next to Capacity from Step 6 and move the decimal to the left one space. For example, if the hard drive you’re viewing has a total capacity of 80.0 GB, moving the decimal one space to the left makes it 8.0 GB, meaning that you shouldn’t let the free space drop below that for that particular device.

Examine Types of Files Taking Up Storage Space

In Windows 11 & 10, much more detail about what sorts of files are using up your drive’s capacity can be found in Settings > System > Storage. Just choose a drive you’re interested in and Windows will analyze it, breaking it down into categories like System & reserved, Temporary files, Apps & features, Pictures, and more.

There are also several free disk space analyzer tools you can download for Windows 11 and older versions of Windows, that’ll show you which files and folders are occupying the most space.

In any version of Windows, choosing Disk Cleanup from the drive’s properties (Step 6 above) will start the Disk Cleanup utility, a one-stop-shop for removing files that are no longer needed by Windows.

Keeping your data backed up is a fundamental part of computer use. Unfortunately, it’s also the one thing most computer users either don’t know how to do or forget to do. Well, all the excuses are gone now that Windows 7 has taken the complexity out of the process and will bug you until you setup a backup process on your system. Let’s jump right into it.

How to Create a Windows 7 Backup

1. From windows browser, go to My Computer. Next, Right-Click your local hard-drive (by default C:) and Click Properties.

2. In the properties for your local disk, Click the Tools tab and then Click Backup now.

3. On the backup utility, Click Set up backup.

4. On the window which may take a moment to appear, Select which destination location where you would like to save your backups. I suggest an external hard-drive, as shown in my example.

Nowadays, you can pick up an external hard drive from Costco for under $100 which should be able to backup ALL your data and photos, etc. Another option is saving your backups to the network. Either way, just don’t store the backup on the same drive as your source data! That’s just a disaster waiting to happen, and it pretty much defeats the whole purpose of a backup.

5. Now decide whether you would like to use default backup folders, or backup your folders by handpicking them yourself.

6. If you chose to select the folders and files yourself, this next part is where you get to do it. Notice the system image checkbox and Check the box for Include a system image of your drives: System Reserved, (C:). I suggest this box just in case the failure is worse than just lost data.

7. After moving onto the next step, you’ll be required to wait for the backup to finish. You can Click View Details if you want the specifics of what exactly is going on.

Backup Complete

Now you should have a backup file saved and ready just when you need it most.

So I have my data backed up, and now I need to restore something because I accidently deleted it or some data became corrupted. How do I do it?

How To Restore Files From Backup

8. Return to the backup utility tool, but, this time, Click Restore my files.

9. On the right-side of Restore Files Select your Files or Folders that you would like to restore from your backup copy.

10. On the next window, depending on your files and circumstances you’ll need to decide whether to restore your files in the original location (replace) or if you want to save the restorations as copies to another folder.

That was easy. But what about disk space, don’t backups use a lot? The answer is yes; backups can take up a lot of room on your hard-drive, but we can fix that problem too.

Adjust Backup Size Settings

11. Back on the backup utility screen, Click Manage Space under your backup.

12. From here you can delete old backups by Clicking View backups. You can also Click Change settings if you would like to keep only the latest image set on your automatic backup. I recommend doing both.

All Done

With Windows 7, Microsoft stepped up their game in the area of computer Backup or Disaster Recovery as I call it. We’ve already touched on a few different ways of protecting your PC and Data from a system crash using a system restore point as well as a system image, As you can see with Windows Backup, you should have all the tools you need to protect your data all without spending a penny.

How to clone hard drive in Windows 7? It’s never an easy job without the help of third-party tool. So, this time, I’ll introduce an impressive disk management utility to help clone hard disk in Windows 7.

By Michael / Last Updated January 27, 2022

Hard drive and hard drive clone

A hard drive or hard disk is one of the main storage media in computing made of aluminium or vitreous discs. According to the working principle, hard drive can be divided into HDD (Hard Disk Drive), SSD (Solid State Drive), HHD (Hybrid Hard Disk). Among them, SSD is commonly used for system and HDD for data nowadays.

To clone a hard drive in Windows 7 means to copy all data completely from one hard disk to another through software or hardware. Generally, if you use software, it will write the contents of the whole hard drive into a backup file in case of restoration next time.

Why clone hard disk Windows 7?

Some people don’t know why clone Windows 7 hard drive. Thus, several reasons for Windows 7 hard drive clone are listed below:

1) Reactivation and Restoration: hard drive clone can be used in the course of system recovery. It will clear original contents and restore system with the image file. At the same time, it may eliminate the computer virus which remains in the hard disk.

2) Prepare for the installations on a new computer: you can install software and use it immediately on a new computer. Besides, if you want to upgrade the hard drive, after buying a new one, you can avoid installing again by cloning.

3) Full backup: You can do a full backup of OS and installed software on your computer. It may save a lot of time in system recovery in the future.

4) Hard drive upgrade: Many people plan on upgrading old hard drives or boot disks to a new and bigger one for better and more stable performance or larger capacity.

Clone hard drive in Windows 7 with free AOMEI Partition Assistant

Here’s an easy way to clone hard drive with freeware – AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard Edition. It’s a powerful disk management utility that’s able to perform various operations including hard drive clone, partition clone, and partition format. It’s perfectly compatible with common OSes including Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8.1/8, and Windows7.

Note: Before starting disk clone, please make sure that the target disk is equal to or larger than the source disk or the used space on the source disk.

Step 1. In the main interface, click “All Tools” and “Disk Clone Wizard”.

Step 2. Please read the difference between the two methods in the pop-up window. Here we choose the default one – Clone Disk Quickly.

Clone Disk Quickly: Clone only used space to another disk and allowed to adjust the size of partitions.

Sector-by-Sector Clone: Clone all sectors to another disk, whether used or not.

Step 3. Choose your source disk and the destination disk. You can tick “Optimize the performance of SSD” to improve the reading and writing speed of SSD with 4K alignment. (If there are partitions on the destination disk, they will be deleted. You can make a backup of data with free AOMEI Backupper if they are important.)

Step 4. Here you can adjust the partition size on the destination disk or just leave it alone. Here, we choose “Clone without resizing partitions” which makes no changes to the partition.

1. Clone without resizing partitions: You’ll keep the size of source partitions.
2. Fit partitions to entire disk: The program will automatically adjust the size of the partition to fit the disk.
3. Edit partitions on the disk: Resize the partitions on the disk on your own.

Step 5. After disk edit, click “Apply” to start cloning hard drive.


1) If the hard drive which you want to clone contains system boot partition, the the operation will be completed under PreOS Mode.

2) Lost files can only be copied through “Sector-by-Sector Clone”.

3) For system disk, AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard Edition supports cloning MBR to MBR. If you need to clone MBR system disk to GPT or clone GPT system disk to MBR/GPT, you can use AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional Edition.

4) If you want to clone the Windows 7 system from your current hard drive to another SSD or HDD, you can still use the Professional edition mentioned above and try the option “Migrate OS to SSD” to get it done easily.

5) There’re 2 ways to boot up Windows 7 from the new hard drive if you cloned the system disk.

a) (Recommended) Shut down your computer and remove the old boot disk. Install the new hard drive to your machine and restart it.

b) Restart your computer and hit Del, F2, or F12 to enter BIOS. Set the new hard drive to the first boot place and press F10 to save the change. Then, exit.


How to clone a hard drive in Windows 7? Windows 7 doesn’t provide any built-in way for hard drive clone and thus you need to turn to some third-party software for help. This time, the freeware AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard is introduced. With its powerful disk cloner feature, you can clone a hard drive to another SSD or HDD quickly and securely in only a few clicks. Meanwhile, if you’re a Server user and want to use this AOMEI product on Server machines, you can try the Server edition of this software.

Our old Retrospect backup solution at work is broken, so I’m stuck backing up my own stuff until they have another solution in place at some undetermined time in the future. I have two 500GB drives installed in the system. The main drive is using just under 100GB. The second drive is for a few backup files from another machine (35GB), my pagefile (system managed size of 16GB), and the rest is available for backup of my main drive. So mid-December, I set up the automatic backup using mostly defaults (standard “data file backup”, plus “system images” using up to 30% of the drive space).

The backup drive just filled up Tuesday/Wednesday, and I see in the Application Log that my backup last night failed because there is not enough disk space. Maybe I’m just stupid and missing the setting somewhere, but why isn’t Windows throwing out my oldest of 12 data file backups instead of just refusing to backup from here on out? Is there a setting somewhere I need to change? Surely the backup program isn’t that stupid, right?

I see that I can manually delete backups, but that defeats the point of automatic backup. I also see that I can restrict the system images to only the latest instead of 30% of the drive space, but it says that will only free up 38GB of space, which would only allow for one more “data file backup” before I’m in the same situation again. Ideally, I would like to restrict the backups to

75% of the free space on the drive or so, but I will settle for a full drive as long as it’s not stupidly keeping the oldest instead of the newest backups.

What am I missing, Ars?

I don’t think you are missing too much about it. It makes huge backup files and it isn’t very smart.

Using your post’s subject line as a Google search, this is from the first search result:

If you are allowed to use third party apps at work, you might want to do that.

Yeah, I had seen that, but I was hoping Ars might have a solution. Thata’s very disappointing — WHS works very well, you’d think they could have used some of that in Windows 7, or at least have the common sense to remove the oldest.

You can’t even remove multiple backups, you have to remove each one individually.

If Win7’s doesn’t work, what are the recommended backup solutions for multiple version copies of important files? (I can keep using the built-in for system image, at least — it has some sense of space).

I have been told by our sysadmin that the “System Image” backup is actually a full backup with daily differential backups at the block level. So that should be sufficient for my needs, and I’m not quite sure what the point of the “data file backups” is, so I’m just going to turn it off unless someone has a better idea or explanation.

The Data File backups allow a quicker route to restore the files you are most likely to want. They are duplicated in the System Image (which is pretty much just a VHD copy of your hard drive).

I’ve been digging around looking for a solutions to the same problem, cleaning up old backups. I’m not really sure why Microsoft left this feature out of Windows 7 (Windows Server is supposed to be able to manage disk space) but that is neither here nor now. After digging around a possible solution seems to be to use forfiles to delete old backups. There are a couple of registry settings that allow you to force a full backup on intervals of n days. The default, as I understand it is 365 or something like 30% disk space. I have changed it to do a full backup every day and hope that I will end up with backup sets for each day making it safe to delete, for instance, yesterdays backup set via the file system rather than through the control panel applet. In addition to that I have set the backup task trigger (Task Scheduler -> Microsoft -> Windows Backup) to run on the hour starting at 12:00 AM. From there I’m going to use forfiles in a batch script run through task scheduler to delete backup sets that are older than n days. I have not tested any of this as of yet so take it for what it is. I’d really like to use the built-in windows backup but in the end this may be a futile effort.

I’ve had this setup running for a few days on a few different workstations and it does not work. Windows Backup is not creating new backup sets for each day as expected which pretty much renders this idea (and to some degree Windows 7 Backup) useless. Probably better just to invest your money and or time in something else for backups because Microsoft’s built-in solution simply falls short of what should have been the goal which is minimal intervention from the user. It’s my opinion that backups failing when the disk is full and there are old backups that can be deleted is simply unacceptable even for a home user.

set DAYS_TO_KEEP=-14

forfiles /d %DAYS_TO_KEEP% /p “%BACKUP_PATH%” /c “cmd /c if @isdir==TRUE rd /s /q @path”

Table of Contents

What Can Cause Data loss in External Hard Drive?

Data loss in External Hard Drive can occur due to several reasons, few of them are detectable and few are still undetectable. Let’s quickly discuss the possible reasons that can cause data loss.

Internal Damage: Data loss in External Drive can occur due to several reasons like corruption, Improper formatting, accidental file deletion. This may also happen due to file system failure and corruption in the partition structure, system crash, etc.

Electronic Damage: Data loss can also occur when there is a power surge, or if there is no appropriate power supply from surge-protected or grounded power outlets. Moreover, the existence of bad sectors on external hard drives, malware attacks, and several other unknown reasons can be the possible reasons of data loss in External Drive.

No matter what, once you observed the data loss, remove the external hard drive carefully to avoid severe damage and overwriting of the data. Although, It has always been recommended by IT experts to buy reliable Backup Data Recovery Software.

Recover Backup From External Hard Drive in Windows XP

  1. Restart your system to ensure that all applications are closed.
  2. Insert the device to backup your data which can be a CD/DVD media, Flash-based storage, or an external drive.
  3. Launch the Backup utility. Go to the Start menu >All Programs>Accessories>System Tools and click Backup.
  4. In Backup or Restore Wizard, click Next.
  5. The “Backup or Restore” dialog box will provide two options namely Backup your files and settings or restore your files and settings. You have to select “Restore files and settings” and then his “Next”.
  6. In the case of a drive failure, you can browse the backup file created during the backup process. If you’re unable to locate it, search the files ending with .bkf extension.
  7. Double click on the backup file or you can use the collapse “+” sign underneath the “Items to restore:” heading to the desired file you want to restore.
  8. Select the files or folders you would like to restore. Press “Next
  9. A window will pop up providing an overview of all the commands that you have configured the utility to perform. After that, click on “Finish”.

A message notifying the completion will appear on the screen. Moreover, you can check the integrity of the backup process by going for the advanced features option of the Backup/Restore Wizard. Afterward, a new dialog box will appear will the three options: Original location, Alternate location, and Single folder to save the test of restore folders. Choose the appropriate option then proceed to the How to restore” window. You can overview all options in “Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard” , you can edit them by clicking on “Back” else press “ Finish”. A confirmation message will notify the completion and allow you to verify that the files were backed up efficiently.

Backup & Restore From External Hard Drive in Windows 7

Backup Process

  1. Start your device and connect the external hard drive with your system. External drives usually connect to a computer via a USB port. But some might require eSATA. The external drive must have sufficient space to store the backup. Therefore, Microsoft suggests using an external drive with at least 200 GB of free space.
  2. In the Autoplay window, select “Use This Drive for Backup
  3. Press “Next” if you are directed to a backup location. This screen won’t appear for only one backup option. Else, you will get the choice to select your desired backup location. However, the external drive will be a default backup location.
  4. Press “Next” to keep the “Let Windows Choose” option intact. Otherwise, the “Let Me Choose” option will let you choose whether you have to include a system image or not
  5. Press “Change Schedule” if you want to amend the default schedule then click “OK.” The default Schedule uses weekly backups on Sunday at 7 p.m.
  6. Select “Save Settings and Run Backup” and wait for its completion.

Restore Steps

  1. Insert your external drive in your system.
  2. Press “Start,” type “backup and restore” and then press “Backup and Restore.”
  3. Select “Restore My Files.” Otherwise, press “Restore All Users‘ Files” to restore all files or “Recover System Settings or Your Computer” to perform a system recovery
  4. Choose “Browse for Files” or “Browse for Folders” and select the files or folders you want to restore. Repeat the process to add more files or folders. Press “Next”.
  5. Select “In the Original Location” to save the files to their original location or select “Browse” to select another location.
  6. Select “Restore” to restore the backup files

Best Solution to Restore Backup Data from External Hard Drive

Although there are numerous ways to recover the backup data from a corrupted/ damaged hard drive it doesn’t necessarily assure the reliability and safety of the backup files. Therefore, our data recovery experts always emphasize on reliable data recovery software. Sysinfo BKF Recovery Toolsafely backs up of more than 1TB successfully and comes up with exclusive features like Range Scan and Search Functionality.

Check out its free version to test the software’s data recovery capabilities. It effectively scans corrupt files and displays all files and folders in the hierarchy. Once convinced, you can go for a full license to restore the recovered data at your desired location.

Final Thoughts

Always try to maintain at least two backup copies of your important data. Moreover, make sure to not interrupt the hard drive while using it. Never disconnect it while it is being used, and always eject it safely. Although it is always recommended to use a data recovery software for safer and reliable backup of crucial data.

Mahesh Makvana is a freelance tech writer who specializes in writing how-to guides. He has been writing tech tutorials for over a decade now. He’s written for some of the prominent tech sites including MakeUseOf, MakeTechEasier, and Online Tech Tips. Read more.

Are you having trouble deleting a folder from your Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC? If so, that may be a system folder or a folder being used by other apps. We’ll show you how to successfully delete “undeletable” folders on your computer.

Reasons You Can’t Delete a Folder on Windows

The most common reason you can’t delete a folder is that your folder is a Windows system folder. In this case, the system prevents you from removing the folder as it can make your PC unstable.

If you’re sure yours is not a system folder, then your “undeletable” folder may be in use by your installed apps. When a folder is being used by an app, Windows prevents you from making changes to that folder. In this case, you can close the app using your folder and then try to delete the folder.

If your case doesn’t match either of the above scenarios, you may want to use one of the following methods to force remove your folder.

Method 1: Use Command Prompt

One quick way to force delete a folder is to use Command Prompt. You can run a command from this tool that deletes your selected folder.

To do that, first, open your “Start” menu and search for “Command Prompt”. Then, on the right pane, click “Run as Administrator.”

You’ll see a “User Account Control” prompt. Select “Yes.”

When Command Prompt opens, type the following command and press Enter. In this command, replace PATH with the path to the folder you want to delete.

Tip: If your path has spaces in it, enclose the path with double quotes.

For example, to delete a folder named Unwanted in the Documents folder on your C drive, you’d use the following command.

Warning: The command permanently deletes your folder, so make sure you really want to do that.

The specified folder is now removed from your Windows PC, and you’re all set.

Method 2: Boot in Windows Safe Mode

If you aren’t sure what app has hijacked your folder so you can’t delete it, reboot your PC in safe mode and then try to delete the folder. In safe mode, your PC only loads the essential Windows files, preventing any third-party apps from automatically launching.

To use this method, first, boot your Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC in safe mode using our guide.

Once you’re in safe mode, launch File Explorer and locate the folder to delete. Then, right-click this folder and choose “Delete.”

Your folder is now deleted.

You may want to remove the folder from Recycle Bin as well, which you can do by opening the Recycle Bin, right-clicking your folder, and choosing “Delete.”

And that’s all there is to getting rid of stubborn folders on your PC. Enjoy!

Method 3: Use Third-Party Software

If your folder still won’t delete, there’s a free third-party app called Unlocker that can help you remove your folders. This app basically unlocks your folder from any locks due to which it can’t be deleted, and then allows you to finally get rid of the folder.

To use this method, first, download and install the free Unlocker app on your PC. Then launch the newly installed app.

On Unlocker’s main window, choose the folder to delete. Then, at the bottom, click “OK.”

On the screen that follows, click the drop-down menu and select “Delete.” Then click “OK.”

Unlocker will unlock your folder and delete it from your PC. You’re all done.

Method 4: Use WinRAR to Force Remove Folders

This might sound strange but you can use WinRAR (a file compression app) to delete your stubborn folders. The way this works is that you create an archive out of your “undeletable” folder and then ask the app to delete the original folder after the archive is made.

That way, when WinRAR has created an archive from your folder, it deletes the original folder. You can then delete the newly-created archive as well.

To do that, first, grab the free version of WinRAR and install it on your PC. Then restart your Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC so WinRAR integrates with your context menu.

When your PC turns back on, open File Explorer and find the folder to delete. Then right-click this folder and choose “Add to Archive.”

On the “Archive Name and Parameters” window, in the “Archiving Options” section, enable the “Delete Files After Archiving” option. Then, at the bottom of the window, select “OK.”

Let WinRAR make an archive from your selected folder. When that’s done, WinRAR will remove the original folder. At this point, you may now delete your newly created archive.

And that’s how you go about ridding your Windows PC of any unwanted and stubborn folders. Very useful!

While you’re at it, consider clearing your Windows PC’s cache to get rid of unwanted files from your storage.

Last Updated: 11th December, 2021

  1. Open Start.
  2. Search for Disk Management and click the top result to open the experience.
  3. Right-click the new hard drive and select the Format option.
  4. In the “Value label” field, type a descriptive name for the drive.

Also asked, how do you format a hard drive in Windows 10?

Windows 10 offers users a built-in disk management tool to create, delete, extend, shrink, and format partitions.

  1. Type Control Panel in the search box.
  2. Right-click on the target drive or partition and click on “Format”.
  3. Select the file system and set the cluster size.
  4. Click “OK” to format the drive.

why can’t I format my hard drive? Use diskpart to “clean” the drive then use disk management to create partitions and format. If the hard drive was attached when installing the OS onto the SSD, some system files (like the boot loader) may have been deposited on the hard drive which is why it won’t let you format it.

Secondly, do you need to format a new external hard drive?

Most external hard drives come formatted with the FAT file system, which makes the drive compatible with multiple operating systems. As such, the drive is immediately usable out of the box. However, if you do not intend to change the file system, a format is not necessary.

Do all drives get formatted when I install new windows?

It is because the drive containing old Windows installation is formatted at the time of new installation. Now, it is clear that Windows drives will get formatted. Therefore, if a user wants to have any important data like pictures, documents, etc., in that drive, it needs to back up all before formatting.