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How to backup your entire computer to Dropbox, including programs, settings, profiles and all files

Backup to Dropbox

In this article, we’ll learn how to easily backup your entire computer to your Dropbox. Not just files (those you can just drag to Dropbox); we are talking about having a backup of your programs, applications, accounts, settings, profiles, personalization and all files (not just the ones in your Dropbox folder)

Dropbox already serves many of its users as an impromptu backup solution, for some of the more important files. However, it is in no way a complete backup product. Out-of-the-box, Dropbox only allows you to manually sync a file with other computers and with Dropbox Cloud storage. You cannot tell it to backup all of your files, it is not automatic, and you definitely cannot backup anything which is not a file (apps, user profiles, settings etc.)

This tutorial demonstrates how to use a combination of Dropbox and Zinstall FullBack software to create a powerful backup, which automatically protects your entire computer, and saves your backup both locally and on Dropbox Cloud. Backups are done automatically: you don’t need to “babysit” them or remember to run a backup. You just have everything stored in your Dropbox (backups are encrypted, so even if Dropbox gets hacked, your stuff is safe). Most importantly, when disaster strikes, you can restore your stuff to a completely different computer, including applications, program files, apps, settings, profiles, emails, accounts, passwords, documents, pictures, music and, of course, all of your files.

How to back up your entire computer to Dropbox

    1. Download and install Zinstall FullBack (you can get Zinstall FullBack here. It has a free 30 day trial, too.)
    2. Run the Backup and click “Settings…” button.
    3. Click “Change”, and choose “Dropbox Folder” from the available backup options.Backup to Dropbox />
    4. Turn the backup on.
    5. That’s it!

And here is a quick video of the setup process:

So what happens now? Zinstall FullBack will first make a full backup of your entire Windows 10. This means every file, every program, every setting you have there – all backed up and protected. It will be safely stored in your Dropbox folder on the computer itself, and Dropbox will then sync the backup files to its Cloud storage.

[Note of course that you do need to have enough space available in your Dropbox folder; for most computers, you’ll need the paid Dropbox option to have enough space. Don’t have enough space? Use Amazon S3 storage or our own FullBack Cloud instead.]

After that, it will keep backing up any changes you make to the computer, once every hour. So if you change a file, or install a new program, your backup will be updated accordingly within 60 minutes. This is all done completely automatically. In fact, you probably won’t even feel it running. It is very efficient in handling just the changes made, and even protects the hard drive’s health, by minimizing the amount of reads and writes to it (this makes the drive live longer!)

Of course, the real reason you have a backup is the restore part. How do you restore a single file that you’ve misplaced? And how do you restore everything, including program files, if your computer crashes? Read on to find out.

How to restore a file that I’ve accidentally deleted?

So you were working on an important document, and now it’s gone. Fear not – that’s exactly why you have set up an automatic backup of your entire Windows 10! Here is what you do:

Restore files

  1. Open your Zinstall FullBack’s Restore wizard.
  2. If you remember the file’s name, just type it into the search box. It will appear below.
  3. If you don’t remember what the file was called, but do remember where it was, you can browse your backup files, and find your file like that.
  4. Once you have the file, just hit restore – and it will appear exactly where it was, up to date!

That’s it – your file is back and unharmed.

My computer crashed. How do I restore everything from the backup, onto another computer?

This is something you can only do if you have used Zinstall FullBack. It can actually restore all the stuff from your backed up computer (programs, settings, files, emails, accounts, password, favorites, documents, pictures, music, etc.) onto a completely different computer and completely different Windows. Even if you’ve backed up a Windows 7 32bit Dell, and your replacement PC is a Windows 10 64bit HP, Zinstall will still restore everything you’ve got.

Restore programs

To do that, install Dropbox and Zinstall FullBack on the replacement computer. Run Zinstall FullBack, select your Dropbox as backup source, and follow the prompts for complete restore. When finished, just restart the computer, and you’ll see all the programs, settings and files from your crashed computer.

Video demo – restore from Dropbox backup


Summary

Dropbox is one of the best consumer Cloud storage solutions on the market. By using Zinstall FullBack and Dropbox together, you get a complete, automatic, always on backup of your entire Windows 10 PC, including all programs, settings and files – both locally and on Dropbox Cloud.

It is extremely easy to set up. You do not have to connect any equipment to the computer itself, or even remember that you have a backup. It is all automatic.

And when you accidentally delete a file, or when your computer crashes, you will be able to recover efficiently and completely – and will thank yourself for taking the right precautions well in advance.

Ready to supercharge your Dropbox?

Get a free trial of Zinstall FullBack right here