I have a lot of hidden directories in my Windows home and documents directories. I want them to be backed up and I am using the Windows 7 built-in backup mechanism.

Will Windows Backup (the built-in one) also backup and restore hidden files/folders?

(The system image doesn't count. That will probably include the hidden files, but I wonder whether the normal, shadow-copy based backups include hidden files.)

Bonus question: How does Windows Backup handle NTFS reparse points (aka symlinks)? If hidden files are not backed up, could I create non-hidden symlinks to hidden files/directories to get them backed up as well?

  • Windows Back up + reparse points? Thumbscrews would be more pleasant: superuser.com/questions/298019/… Jul 18, 2012 at 16:14
  • @DarthAndroid Yeah, I know about the library "bug". Windows has been complaining about not being able to backup one of my libraries since forever. Why they wouldn't test backup together with libraries is a mystery to me. Maybe Windows 8 Backup will be better. Maybe not.
    – SealedSun
    Jul 18, 2012 at 16:43

1 Answer 1


I just verified it: Windows Backup does indeed also backup hidden folders and it's contents.

I took a backup created on schedule this morning and looked for a hidden folder I had specially created for testing this.

And indeed, I was able to restore a file in the hidden folder back to the state that was saved this morning.

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