Backing Up Data from a Laptop to an External Hard Drive or USB Flash Drive

To back up data from your Drew-issued laptop to an external hard drive or USB flash drive, follow the steps below: 

  • First, you need to locate where the personal files are stored for your profile.

Look for the magnifying class icon at the bottom left side of the screen that has “Type here to search”.


Type in File Explorer

Click on Windows (C:)

Click on Users

  • Locate a folder with your FirstName.LastName (example  John.Doe)

Only certain folders listed are amongst the normal backup folders and they are called Desktop, Documents, Downloads, Favorites, Music, Pictures & Videos

Feel free to also select the folders called Dropbox, OneDrive & Box if those are tools you are already using to store your data and if you have the space available on the backup drive to do so. 

  • Hold down the ctrl key and left click on all the folders you wish to back up




If you see any files that are important that are not within any folders, please feel free to highlight those files as well

  • With all of the files selected & highlighted in blue, right click and select copy


  • Connect your external hard drive or usb flash drive to an available usb port on your laptop.  Go back to File Explorer & you should recognize a new drive letter that will appear under Windows (C:)

It should appear as drive (D:).  If you are unsure as to what drive letter the new drive is, please remove the usb cable from the usb device & plug it back into a usb port while looking at the available drives within the File Explorer screen


  • Double left click on the drive letter representing the drive that you are transferring the data to, right click on an empty space on the screen that is not a file, select New….select Folder….Name the folder something other than Firstname.Lastname.  Double left click on the new folder you just name, Right Click and select Paste.  While the files are transferring, never cancel or stop the process for any reason what so ever.  I repeat, while the files are transferring…never cancel or stop the process for any reason what so ever.  You risk the chance of you corrupting some or all of your files. 


  • To verify that all files are transferred you can compare the file sizes located in the c drive & the drive location that you have transferred your files to.  You can also see the file size by scrolling over each file or by right clicking on each file and selecting properties



  Create a service ticket if you have any questions about this process.