Microsoft won’t let you remove new Windows 11 Backup app — here’s why

Windows 11 logo on a laptop screen
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

The big Windows 11 fall update is here. Along with features like Microsoft Copilot, the latest update introduces the new Windows Backup app. Much like Time Machine on Macs, Windows Backup regularly backs up your apps, settings, and folders to the cloud. While the new app can be beneficial, you’re stuck with it as Microsoft has confirmed you cannot remove Windows Backup from your system.

On its support website, Microsoft says that you can’t remove Windows Backup because it’s a system component. The company states that it will release a future Windows update that prevents Windows Backup from appearing on certain user interface screens like “All app” or “Install apps.” However, Windows Backup itself will remain in Windows.

Microsoft Windows 11 running on an Apple MacBook laptop.

(Image credit: rawf8/Shutterstock)

As Microsoft details, the Backup app is a system component that “provides a solution for users to back up certain files and folders, as well as settings, credentials, and apps to the cloud through a single interface.” For instance, you can back up the Documents folder and the Desktop to the cloud. On top of that, you can restore your backed-up data to a new Windows device and continue where you left off.

As Windows Latest notes, some aren’t enamored with Windows Backup. At best, the app could be seen as bloatware meant to force people to use Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud storage. At worst, Windows Backup might not function properly or at all. For instance, some IT administrators found that the app failed to launch, receiving a “this feature is not supported by your organization” message. PC World tested the feature and found not everything was backed up when moving data to a different device, for example. 


The idea behind the Windows Backup app is sound, but it seems it might need some updating to truly function as intended. As some users have noted, the app either doesn’t back up everything or tries to sync with unwanted apps. And of course, you’ll need enough room on your OneDrive cloud storage so all your files are backed up.

Windows Backup is still fairly new (at least to the public) so we’ll keep an eye on any updates Microsoft delivers. Stay tuned for more.

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Tony Polanco
Computing Writer

Tony is a computing writer at Tom’s Guide covering laptops, tablets, Windows, and iOS. During his off-hours, Tony enjoys reading comic books, playing video games, reading speculative fiction novels, and spending too much time on X/Twitter. His non-nerdy pursuits involve attending Hard Rock/Heavy Metal concerts and going to NYC bars with friends and colleagues. His work has appeared in publications such as Laptop Mag, PC Mag, and various independent gaming sites.