Backup an External Hard Drive to another External Hard Drive (Fast)

July 5, 2019

This article presents how to copy files between two external drives easily by backing up one external hard drive to another with free backup utility on Windows 10/7.

Need to backup one external hard drive to another

Sometimes we backup our important data or backup PC to external hard drive for better protection. While backing up external hard drive to another external hard drive seems necessary when one external hard drive has used as storage device.

For example, I store my photos on the newly bought 1 TB external hard drive, and I would like to backup this new drive to another external drive in case hard drive fails or computer meltdown one day. What’s more, a regular backup on external hard drive would be better for me because I wouldn’t expect myself to remember to backup manually every time.

Also I prefer incremental backup to backup only changed data to save my disk space. If I can encrypt my backup image I will feel even better (don’t call me greedy, you can’t be more careful with your data as well).

How to copy one external hard drive to another directly?

I tried to backup external hard drive to external hard drive on Windows 10 with its internal backup utility, only to find that it supports backup TO external hard drive not backup FROM the external hard drive. Yes, I can create system backup image to external hard drive or backup files to external drives with Windows tools, yet it is not my type.

Lucky enough, I find one handy backup software that is free for my OS (I am running Windows 10) named AOMEI Backupper standard. They claim it also free for Windows 7/8/XP/Vista. This software has a user-friendly interface which is perfect designed for people like me who has less experiences of computer. Furthermore, this utility supports schedule backup, really saves my time and effort.

Moreover, it has many useful features along with, such as system backup, disk clone, and partition clone, file backup/sync, etc. And I’ve learned that it could copy operating system to flash drive as a backup, which is not even supportable by Windows Backup and Restore utility. In my situation, I stored mostly photos, documents, personal files, videos, and music on my external drive, so I would choose disk backup to get what I want.

Backup my external drive to another one with AOMEI Backupper

First of all, connect both external hard drives to my PC. Then download, install and open AOMEI Backupper standard. Now, I’ll show you the fastest way to transfer files between two external hard drives.

1. Select Disk Backup under Backup directory.

Disk Backup

2. Select the 1 TB external hard drive as the source disk. Note that we can backup two or more external drives to a same place. Just select them all.

Add Disk

3. Click to select the other external hard drive as the destination hard drive.

Select Destination

4. Now it is time to set up regular backup and incremental backup. Check Schedule box to set planned backup time and incremental backup (I find the incremental backup is set by default after I open the window).

Schedule Settings

Schedule Settings Advanced

5. Click Options to encrypt my backup image. It is an advanced option so upgrading is needed.

Backup Settings

6. Finally, click Start Backup, and it will back my external hard drive up without interrupting my work flow.

Other helpful features on external hard drive backup

I also find some features of this software that might be useful in the event of external drive duplication. List them one by one for reference.

  • File sync. A feature under Backup tab, you may need to scroll down to see it. It is useful to sync files between two external hard drives when they are connected to one computer. Its advanced mode, real-time file sync, allows us to synchronize changed files in real time.

  • Disk clone. I found backing up may be not the only way to transfer data between two drives. If you want to, a direct external hard drive to external hard drive clone is available. The biggest advantage of this method is that it saves the steps to restore a backup image.

  • Bootable rescue media. This feature is not related to external hard drive backup directly, yet it provides an extra layer of protection for host operating system. Create a bootable device in advance and when system fails unexpectedly, we can use it to boot up computer and to, for example, backup hard drive without booting Windows.

There are other features such as check image and email notification that I cannot explain all, but this free software really a comprehensive tool that offers many practical options. Get it and explore by yourself.

Conclusion

It is not uncommon for us to backup external hard drive to another external hard drive. The question is to find one reliable and worry-free backup utility. What’s worth to mention, either the source external hard drive or the destination one, you need external drive backup software to back them up for double security.

AOMEI Backupper standard meets most of my computer and hard drive backup needs. I also restored Windows 10 backup to dissimilar hardware last week for my friend’s computer with the tutorial and the system works great till now. In my opinion, try it and maybe it will surprise you.

If you are Windows Server users, its AOMEI Backupper Server is suitable for you. This advanced edition allows you to merge backup images on external hard drive and manage storage space conveniently. You are able to do command line backup & restore as well.