OK, bad things happen. Your computer just crashes because of a virus or hard drive failure and you cannot access your files anymore. Or worse your computer was stolen or otherwise damaged.

Now you need to restore all your precious files and wonder how do you do that? If you signed up for an online backup service you’re in luck because this process tends to be very easy. But even with other software based backups this isn’t at all difficult. If you don’t have a backup be prepared to pay a lot of money to file restoration services

Restoring a Backed Up File

Generally, there are three ways in which you can retrieve/restore your files with an online backup service: Web restore – from the service’s web interface. Software restore – with a dedicated software from your service provider. Hard drive delivery – where a service ships you an external storage device that you can just plug into your new computer

Web restore is generally useful if you just need to restore individual files that you’ve accidentally deleted or that have somehow disappeared from your computer. You just login to the website of the backup service provider with your credentials and search your backup for that file or folder you need.

Usually a download starts immediately, sometimes (depending on the file size) it can take longer until the archive is delivered. We wouldn’t recommend web restores for larger files or entire hard drives because that can become unreliable or take a lot of time. 

For a full hard drive restore we recommend using the vendor’s dedicated software because this will make it easier to select your files or all of them. In some cases you can monitor the restore process or even prioritize which folders you’d like to restore first. Either way, be prepared for several hours until all your files are restored.

That, of course, depends on your Internet connection and amount of backed up data.


If you have a lot of data backed up you might want to consider having a hard drive sent to you overnight. Some services will ship an external hard drive with your data on it to your door at an additional cost.

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So if you have up to 1TB of data and need it urgently you might be better off paying for that external hard drive delivery. 

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