Backup and Restore feature returns in leaked peek at Windows 10 build 10123

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Microsoft may revive a “Backup and Restore” feature in Windows 10, giving users more control over which files to flag for safekeeping.

In Windows 7, Backup and Restore allowed users to make scheduled backups of any file or folder, including files from any other Windows computer. But with Windows 8, Microsoft deprecated this feature, introducing “ File History” in its place.

File History is supposed to be a better solution. It's easier to use, and allows for continuous, automatic backups instead of regularly scheduled ones. Still, this system has a major limitation: It can only back up files from Libraries (such as the Documents and Pictures folders), Favorites, Contacts, and the desktop. Recoving files and programs from elsewhere on the computer required a full system image restore.

In the latest leaked Windows 10 build (number 10123, via Neowin), it appears that Microsoft is giving Backup and Restore another chance. File History will likely remain available as the go-to option for most people, but users who want more control will at least have the option in Windows 10.

The leaked build also shows a private mode for Microsoft's Edge browser, along with a way to save passwords and forms. The build sports some cosmetic changes as well, including a way to set color preferences for the Start menu's Live Tiles.

Why this matters: If Windows 8 was all about stripping away elements that Microsoft deemed unnecessary, Windows 10 is about reviving some of those features in response to feedback. While Microsoft has claimed that most users only care about backing up personal files, Backup and Restore was likely a critical feature for some users, especially in the enterprise. Appeasing these users and getting them to upgrade will be crucial for Microsoft to avoid another XPocalpyse scenario.

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