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I'm using Windows 7 and I need to schedule a daily backup that does the following:

  • The schedule needs to run daily at 7pm
  • The backup needs to generate a compressed archive of selected backup directories. These archives are ideally created with 7zip.
  • The archives generated by the backup need to be placed in a directory on my filesystem of my choosing.

I know Python and MSBatch, but I was hoping I wouldn't have to write a script for this. Are there any tools out there that will do what I need or at least something similar? I can use the Windows 7 task scheduler to execute this, but I don't know of what program it would execute.

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up vote 9 down vote accepted

You can accomplish this using the 7zip command line tool and the windows task scheduler.

Download the 7zip command line tool from and extract it to c:\7zip

Open notepad and create a list of the directories you want to backup, one path per line

c:\users\username\important directory1
c:\users\username\important directory2

Go to tools->save and make sure to change the drop down menu from ANSI to UTF-8 and save the file as c:\users\username\backuplist.txt

Now, open the windows task scheduler and create a new task. Give the task a name and select to run it daily at your specified time. Select that you want to run a program and fill in the fields as follows

Program: c:\7zip\7za.exe
Arguments: a c:\backups\backupname.7z -r @c:\users\username\backuplist.txt
run in: c:\7zip

Now save the task and you should have a working backup solution based on 7zip.

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Windows has a backup service. You are probably best off just using the wizard provided, need for anything fancy. (type backup into the start box).

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I don't think that Backup and Restore in windows creates ZIP archives. This won't work for me as that means Windows is required to extract my backups. – void.pointer Jun 1 '11 at 0:44
According to this if its large its multiple zips. Leads me to believe that small is one zip – soandos Jun 1 '11 at 0:46
Also according to wikipedia backup type (except for full drive) is zip. see here – soandos Jun 1 '11 at 1:08

If you open your start menu, go to the Control Panel > Backup and Restore. Clicking it will bring up this:

backup and restore

From there you can schedule backups to the selected location you want. Just hit Setup a backup

It should look like this once you complete the steps:

finished backup

I am still investigating the zip part of this.

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