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User Case: Can I Sync Google Drive to an External Hard Drive

“How to backup G-Drive to an External HDD? My intention is to use an HDD to back up the entirety of My Drive once per week using USB. I tried this today and my computer returned an error saying the process was not supported. So, my question is how do I backup my Google drive to an external USB HDD. Will I need to copy the files manually? Thank you!”

Why Sync Google Drive to External Hard Drive

Google Drive
Google Drive

Offering 15GB of free storage space, Google Drive is a brilliant cloud storage solution that enables users to store many kinds of files, including videos, screenshots, PDF files, documents, music files, etc. With Google Drive, users can access their files across multiple devices, such as computers, laptops, phones, etc.

However, it’s not secure enough to only store files on Google Drive. Although Google Drive is an excellent cloud storage service, there’re unfixed errors and bugs that may lead to data loss somehow. In this situation, syncing files on Google Drive to an external hard drive is a good way to protect data security. Meanwhile, there’re other benefits you can enjoy, such as:

  • Access Files Offline. Although Google Drive allows you to access files easily without the limitations of time and place, you need to make sure the Internet is accessible. Whereas the external hard drive can meet your requirements and you can navigate your files offline.
  • Avoid Attacks from Ransomware. Unfixed bugs and errors and malicious ransomware from the Internet might lead to data loss on Google Drive. When you access and manage your files on your external hard drive, you don’t need to worry about it anymore.

So, how to sync Google Drive with an external hard drive? The following content gives you 2 useful methods. After reading, you can choose the one that suits you most.

How to Sync Google Drive to External Hard Drive

In this part, there’re 2 easy methods offered for your reference. Specifically speaking, you can choose to use Google Takeout, the Google Drive Disk or a third-party service – MultCloud. Now, continue to read the detailed steps.

Way 1: Use Google Takeout

Google Takeout is a service that can help you export data from Google products such as Google Drive, Google Photos, YouTube, etc. at once. So, if you want to sync Google Drive to an external hard drive, you can export data from Google Drive to your computer, and then move them to your external hard drive. Here’s what you should follow:

Step 1: Head to Google Takeout on the web, Deselect all on the top right side, and scroll down your cursor to tick Drive only. Then go to the bottom of the page to click on Next step.

Next Step
Next Step

Step 2: Choose the file type, frequency, and destination according to your situation. Then, Create export.

Create Export
Create Export

Step 3: Then you will receive an email with a downloading link. Then you can click to download that folder to your computer.
Step 4: The folder from Google Takeout is a compressed folder, you need to decompress it. Next, connect your external hard drive to your PC, and then you can move the folder on your computer to the external hard drive.

Tip: Sometimes, Google Takeout cannot export your large files successfully, so you need to care about the exporting process. Meanwhile, the shared files on Google Drive cannot be exported. And if you want to store shared files to the external hard drive, you need to download them manually.

Way 2: Utilize the Google Drive Disk

If you have downloaded and installed Google Drive on your computer, there is a Google Drive Disk generated automatically on your PC. So, you can simply take advantage of this virtual disk. Now, we will walk you through the steps:

Step 1: Connect the external hard drive to your computer.
Step 2: Go to the Google Drive Disk on your PC and locate the files/folders you want to sync.

Google Drive Disk
Google Drive Disk

Step 3: Open the folder that you want to move data into on the external hard drive. Then drag files/folders on Google Drive Disk and drop them to the external hard drive.

Tip: You should make sure the Internet connection keeps stable. Or, the process will be stuck and cost much of your time.

Bonus Tip: How to Sync Google Drive to Another Cloud

You’ve learned how to sync Google Drive to external hard drive. Then how about syncing Google Drive to another cloud? With the development of cloud storage services, many people are using different cloud services at the same time. In this case, syncing files from one cloud to another is inevitable for better management.

Traditionally, many people would download files from one cloud and upload them to another cloud. This method can deliver the goal though, it’s time-consuming. To improve the sync efficiency, a practical cloud sync service, MultCloud, can do you a favor.


MultCloud is a wonderful cloud file manager that can help you manage multiple cloud storage solutions in only one place. Currently, MultCloud supports Google Drive, Google Photos, OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, Dropbox, Dropbox Business, MEGA, Flickr, Amazon S3, etc.

With MultCloud, you don’t need to jump to different apps to manage data on those clouds. Instead, you can perform basic features on different clouds via MultCloud. For example, you can upload folders to Google Photos, download files from OneDrive, and share files on other clouds. Also, there’re advanced features such as Cloud Sync, which helps you sync files across clouds directly.

Why choose MultCloud to sync files between clouds? Here’re some reasons:

  • 9 Useful Sync Mode Supported. MultCloud offers 9 different sync modes for you to choose, such as Mirror Sync, Move Sync, Update Sync, Cumulative Sync, and Real-Time Sync. Different sync modes have different functions. And you can choose the proper sync mode that you need.
  • Offline Sync. MultCloud relies on data traffic to sync files between cloud services. Even if the internet is disrupted, MultCloud can run the sync task in the background once it gets started.
  • Scheduled Sync. If you are busy and don’t have time to sync files across clouds one by one, you can make auto-sync tasks. MultCloud allows you to set up sync tasks at a regulated time, daily, weekly, or monthly.

Now, refer to the following steps to learn how to sync Google Drive to another cloud, taking OneDrive as an example.

Step 1: Create an account of MultCloud and sign in.
Step 2: Hit Add Cloud on the left and add Google Drive and OneDrive, respectively.

Add Google Drive and OneDrive
Add Google Drive and OneDrive

Step 3: Head to Cloud Sync, select Google Drive as the original directory and OneDrive as the target directory, and then click on Sync Now.

Sync Google Drive to OneDrive
Sync Google Drive to OneDrive

This is how to sync Google Drive with OneDrive free via MultCloud. Similarly, if you want to sync files between 2 Google Drive accounts, you can also utilize MultCloud. And it will accomplish your tasks as quickly as possible.


That’s all about how to sync Google Drive to external hard drive. Anyway, you can take advantage of Google Takeout and the Google Drive Disk. Meanwhile, if you want to sync files from Google Drive to another cloud, you can turn to MultCloud.

On top of Cloud Sync, MultCloud offers you other features such as Cloud Backup, Cloud Transfer, and Remote Upload. For example, if you want to backup Dropbox to Synology NAS, MultCloud can do you a favor.

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