Copying your local drive, which is also commonly referred to as your C drive, is one way to protect your PC and your data. Creating a back-up copy will ensure that your data will not be lost. Furthermore, should your computer gets a virus, you can easily rebuild and recover your data with your back up copy of your C drive.
Check the size of your C Drive. Go to "My Computer," then right click, then click on "Properties."
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Compress your C drive to save on disk space. This will not only be used for backing up or copying but to save overall space and leave you with more available space for future use.
Choose a media for you to transfer a copy of your C drive. Make sure that whatever media you decide to choose it will be enough to back up your local disk or C Drive. Choices can be an external hard drive, which is the most preferred method, an internal second hard drive (provided your PC has expandable slots available), several compact discs or mini flash drives of at least 8GB each.
Connect or insert your copy destination media. If it is an external drive, it can be connected either by a firewire or a USB connector that comes with it. Connect it to an available USB port. For internal hard drive, connect it to an available slot in your computer. Read the instructions for compatibility. For the mini flash drive, connect it to a USB hub. For a CD, place it in the CD tray.
Copy your C drive. Go to "My Computer," expand the plus sign, choose "C Drive," right click on "C Drive," then click on "Copy." You can select the entire drive or choose files if space is at not enough. For example, for mini flash drives you may need to use two; for CD, you may need four or five CDs to copy to.
Transfer the copy to a media of choice. You can right click onto the new media by right-clicking then choosing "Paste" or by pressing "Ctrl" and "V" at the same time on your keyboard. Choose the drive to which media will be transferred by browsing your computer's drives.
Wait for the copy to complete before disconnecting. You may want to keep your external hard drive and internal hard drive connected. By doing so, you can create a back-up schedule to run daily at certain times to perform an automatic back-up of your files, this way you will not lose newly added data each day. You can schedule this by increments daily or full back up weekly.
Label your copy. This is especially useful before you store the CDs and mini flash drives to a fire-proof safe. Label it with title and date. For example "Copy of C Drive--month/day/year." For the internal or external hard drives, you can check your back up software for the dates to back track the files.
Schedule future copying or back up. As mentioned earlier, this is why external or internal hard drives are more preferred; you can just have a scheduled task to back up files daily and weekly. However, if you chose CDs or mini flash drives, remember to schedule copying of files at least once a week, or whenever you have added major work on your local disk or C Drive.