Since data can be lost or corrupt by various means viruses, power failures, inexperienced users, etc. it is very important, for even home users, to back up their files. By performing a simple backup, a home user can easily restore their files should they become corrupt or mysteriously disappear.

Windows 7 makes it easy for you to create a backup of your files through the Windows Backup program that lets you make copies of your files or create a system image. Although it is not an elaborate program, it has all the necessary features for home users to back up their important files.

To create a backup in Windows 7:

1. Click Start and click Control Panel.

2. Click System and Security.

3. Click Backup and Restore Centre.

4. Click the Set up backup button.

5. Select where you want to save your backup and click Next.

6. Windows prompts you to select what you want to back up. You can let Windows choose or you select the files to include in the backup. Most people likely want to choose their own files so click the Let me choose option. Click Next.

7. Select the drives and folders you want to backup. Click Next.

8. Click the Save settings and run backup button. Given that home users often overlook their backup plan, you should schedule Windows Backup to run automatically, say on a weekly or monthly basis depending on how critical your files are. You can change the default backup schedule by selecting the Change Schedule option in step 7.

You may have even gone so far as to customize the backup schedule so Windows Backup runs automatically
according to your schedule. Now, to ensure that your backup strategy actually works, you should perform a test restore. A test restore entails restoring your data to an alternate location to determine whether the backup procedure was
performed without error.

To restore data in Windows 7:

1. Click Start and click Control Panel.

2. Click System and Security.

3. Click Backup and Restore Centre.

4. Click Restore my files. This option is only available if you previously created a backup. If you have multiple backups, select the backup from which you want to restore.

5. Click Next.

6. Click the Restore all users files link to restore the files of all users.

7. From the Restore Files window, you can browse for files, browse for folders or search for specific files. Once you have selected the folders and files to restore, click Next.

8. Select the restore destination. You can restore to the original location or restore to a new location.

9. Click the Restore button.

10. Once the process is complete, verify that your folders and files have been restored to the location you selected in step 7.

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