I was going to upgrade from Windows 8 to windows 8.1 Pro, then I went to read a review and said make a back up just in case.

My question is, of what files should I make a backup? Only the documents that are in C:\ or should I need to worry about files in other drives too?

  • 2
    What you backup is entirely up to you. Backup any files you cannot afford to lose. Since you cannot really backup your applications just worry about your personal data. Its very unlikely anything will go wrong, you should be making these backups, even if you were not doing the upgrade.
    – Ramhound
    Oct 17, 2013 at 18:33
  • @Ramhound, you're right .. but I meant only for the windows update. Your comment would help me out, but I wanted to know, what should be meant by create a backup, just in case. So I guess that meant by C :\only... Oct 17, 2013 at 18:37
  • My response is the same. backup anything you cannot afford to lose if the upgrade fails and results in an unbootable system, and the end result is a compelte and total reinstallation of the operating system.
    – Ramhound
    Oct 17, 2013 at 18:40
  • Hmmmm, nice one! +1 :) Oct 17, 2013 at 18:40

2 Answers 2


If you have the storage available, use DriveImageXML to make a backup of your entire drive, just in case there are configuration files/directories that you overlooked during your backup.

If you're doing an in-place upgrade, Windows won't purposely remove your files or bootloader. (Unintentional errors like power failures can still occur.) So backup whatever you're comfortable with.

If you're planning on wiping the entire partition, disconnect any other physical drives that aren't being used, as Windows can sometimes install the bootloader to a different drive. This should keep the files on your other drives safe.

  • No, I am installing the update from the Windows Store! And I have a laptop so, power interuption won't be an issue either. :) Oct 17, 2013 at 18:36

When backing up for an upgrade, this is what I keep personally. No tools used, just straight copy and paste.

  • Documents
  • Any programs/games
  • Application settings, found in %appdata%
  • Any music/movies/stuff you like to have.

Basically the big thing is to get %appdata% if you want to keep settings.

  • Yah! :D You;re right man, go to user panel, click show hidden files and then copy paste these settings. But I don't need them! I will save my Downloads, and just photos and documents. :) Thanks for this. So this means I dont have to worry about other drives. Right? Oct 17, 2013 at 18:39
  • @AfzaalAhmadZeeshan Right. I have 3 hard drives on my computer, and Windows does not touch them during install, so I just moved stuff over to the second drive, and installed, then moved it back Oct 17, 2013 at 18:41
  • Hmmm. So that means to only worry about the data in `C:` :) Thanks.. Oct 17, 2013 at 18:42

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