How to Automatically Back up Windows Folders to OneDrive


Microsoft OneDrive can back up your computer’s Desktop, Documents, and Pictures folders automatically for you. Here’s how to back up your other Windows folders—including Downloads, Music, and Videos—to OneDrive as well.

OneDrive has a feature called “Folder Protection.” This feature allows you to back up the contents of your Desktop, Documents, and Pictures folders to OneDrive so that you won’t lose anything if your computer somehow gets corrupted.

Microsoft has since renamed this functionality to “Manage Back Up” of your “Important PC Folders,” but it still works exactly the same as before.

The "Manage back up" button in OneDrive's settings.

It’s simple to have the Downloads, Music, and Video folders automatically backed up without having to dive into OneDrive’s settings. You just have to change their location, and that’s easy to do.

We’re going to show you how to do this for the Video folder, but you’ll need to do this for each of the three folders individually if you want them all to be backed up by OneDrive.

First, right-click the folder in Windows Explorer and select “Properties” from the context menu.

The "Properties" option on the context menu.

Next, select the “Location” tab.

The "Location" tab in the Properties dialogue.

Now, click the “Move” button.

The "Move" button on the Properties dialogue.

Then, double-click “OneDrive” in the folder dialogue.

The "OneDrive" folder in the Folders dialogue.

Select an existing folder for your videos to be stored in, or click the “New Folder” button to create a new folder. Once you’ve chosen a folder, select it and click “Select Folder.”

The "New folder" button, a selected folder, and the "Select Folder" button.

The location of your Video folder will now change to the one you chose. Click “OK” to close the dialogue.

The folder locationon the Properties dialogue.

A warning dialogue will be displayed. Click “Yes” to make sure that all of your files are where your apps expect them to be.

The "Yes" button on the confirmation dialogue.

Your Videos folder is now backed up to OneDrive. Repeat the steps above for the Downloads and Music folders if you want them to be backed up to OneDrive as well.

This method will only work for Windows’s default folders. If you’ve created other folders in different locations that you’d like to be backed up to OneDrive, you can move them into OneDrive, but that’s not always a suitable solution. And if it isn’t, the answer is to create symbolic links.

RELATED: The Complete Guide to Creating Symbolic Links (aka Symlinks) on Windows





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