How to use the Windows back up image

For those members that don't want to take the time to learn how to use a 3rd party image program;
there is a feature in windows that you might want to look at. Here's a link from HTG
If this has already been posted, delete or what ever needs to be done. Thank you! Also a you tube video!
How to Use All of Windows 10’s Backup and Recovery Tools


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Hi you may need the W10 repair disc if you can't boot into windows.
Here's video to show you how to create this disc.;)

While you all are creating a back up image and a repair disc, lets finish the job and create a recovery flash drive.;)
I hope this saves a member from having to start all over. This would be much better then a reset IMHO!
I'm hoping I can make a decent hand on the forum some day and earn my pay!:D

Hi! Do I practice what I preach?? Yes I pretty much do that. I some times wonder why other members here are not as impressed of me as I am impressed of myself.:rofl: I have used the procedure above to restore a w10 image. Can I guarantee it will work for you. No I can't.
As I stated before a 3rd party image program is much better.;) This is better then nothing.
Here's scree shot of my 1TB seagate external drive where I keep all my images and other things. You will see that I have a image created with the windows image feature. You will also see I have several images created by Macrium Reflect, which is my baby and the love of my life.
If I can get one member to start creating back up images, that aren't doing that now, I will be a happy camper and all this will be worth the time I spent!;):) You will see I have 8 images created with Macrium on this external drive.


I recently bought a Western Digital My Passport Ultra external hard drive to back up my computer.

I have never made (or restored) a system image before. I used the option in Windows control panel to save the system image to My Passport.

When I look on the external drive in the WindowsImageBackup folder, I see three different entries for "Hard Drive Image File."

Shouldn't there only be one image file? How do I know which one to select if I ever need to restore the image for real?



Hi Jeff! Welcome to the forum! These are the files you should see!


Windows will find the image and restore the image! Did you watch any of the videos I attached??

I understand where the image files are, but I don't understand how to re-image my drive. I went through the re-imaging process in the recovery screens, but I don't see any option to select my external hard drive.

Windows will find your image once you click on advanced startup. You can do that and follow wizard and then cancel before you finish the restore. I can't show you the steps, but I just tried mine and then cancelled and it worked just like the video shows!;)
Here's where you click to start the restore process!

Hi Windows forum members! These things I know fairly well. The above works if you can boot inside Windows. If you can't boot to windows, then that's where you use the repair DVD and the recovery flash drive that are shown in the videos. They will take you to the recovery image.
I know these things. If you have questions, I will do my best to answer them!
I love teaching about back ups. It's my thing!:D

Hi Holdum, my WD external hard drive with image is attached to my computer. I go through the instruction to re-image the computer. Windows says it "cannot find a system image on this computer." So, I choose "Select a system image" option and click next. There are no images listed on that page, so I click "Advanced" and get options for "Search for an image on the network" and "Install a driver." I don't think either of these are what I am looking for. Why can't Windows see the image on my external hard drive? I have tried with two different computers and both computers have an image on the external hard drive. Thanks

Hi! texas! When you created the image, did you get a pop up saying image completed successfully. Should take about 30 minutes. Do you see Windows backup image on your WD external hard drive like I show in reply #4? Once you click on Advanced start up, your PC should reboot and find the image on your WD and restore the image. I don't understand the message"cannot find a system image on this computer." The image should be on your external drive, not on your computer!
Did you format your WD external hard drive. I will wait for your reply. Any screen shots might help me! Do you see the WD in File Explorer?

Yes, the images were completed successfully. I have backed up three computers and placed two images of each computer (from different times) on the external drive. After each image was taken, I changed the name from "WindowsImageBackup" to "WindowsImageBackup-Jeff Desktop", so that all images had a different name, and I know what computer they are for. I forgot to change the name back, but I did just change it back for one folder to "WindowsImageBackup", and I still get the same message. Yes, I see the images on my external drive in file explorer. I assume the drive is already formatted.

Can you click on the WD in file explorer and attach a screen shot! I have never tried to rename a image, but don't see why you couldn't!

Do you see this when you're creating your image?

Yes, I saw that screen when I created the images.

Here you go...


I suggest you make another image and not change the name and see if that helps. I have never changed the name>

Thanks for screen shot! The images seem to be on the WD. I just don't understand Windows not being able to find the image and restore it??
There is some confusion some place and we need to find that! It has to be with changing the name IMHO!

Can you open one of the images and see if it looks like the one I attached above?

Yes, it looks exactly the same. Why doesn't Microsoft allow you to manually choose the image location if it can't find it?!?!

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