I have to give an atta-boy to Veeam and Endpoint Backup. Outside of using it at work for 6+ years and loving it, I use VEB to backup my home Win10Home laptop to an external USB drive. Not as often as I should, but I do, and I'm about to increase that frequency, apparently. I lost my HDD entirely, a couple weeks ago. Flat dead, no boot device found, no HDD found, no nothing. Not to fear, I ordered up a new matching HDD (SSHD, actually, but we digress), stuck it in, and realizing I hadn't made my recovery media (shame on me, please make sure you do this), but was able to make a basic one off another machine, booted to the CD as described, picked Bare Metal Recovery, it found my USB and backup stored w/in, and off it went. It did indicate something about the drivers possibly not matching since it appeared to be from different hardware (which the recovery media was), and that I might have to retry w/ some different options in case it blue screens upon first boot, but it didn't, so didn't apply to me. Once the restore was complete, I spit out the CD, disconnected my USB drive, hit reboot, and my laptop w/ new drive came back exactly how I left it the last time I backed up like nothing ever happened. So full of win, massively excellent job Veeam, well done.
Previously I only backed up every so often, about once every 2-3 weeks or so, or about as often as I'd remember to do it and feel like messing w/ it. We use our home laptop for 99% web/shopping/streaming movies so not much changes. We do backup our phones to it, but much like the laptop backups themselves, not very often. My last backup was shortly after Christmas and the HDD died some time mid-late January. There was no new user data on it that got missed, but of course its antivirus, Windows Updates, other misc. updates are screaming but that's fine, they're catching up. I will now be backing up our phones and laptop at least every weekend. What if we had backed up our phones or any other important data (read: family pics), missed a backup, and lost/smashed/stolen phone, like happens to my wife about every other month?
One sort of caveat though. It's a Dell Inspiron 15R 5537 laptop. The replacement HDD I ordered was supposed to be just a blank Seagate SSHD that barely came in a bubble wrap static bag (I hope that was a static bag). I drop in the drive, and booted it just to make sure the laptop would see it, etc. basically function at all to comfirm the drive was good. It immediately came up w/ an out-of-the-box Win8 Dell load just like when we very first got it. I don't know if the laptop itself threw this onto the HDD upon first boot (which is what appears to have happened), this allegedly fresh blank drive somehow had the same OS on it that our laptop came w/, I don't know. Strange but didn't care because I was going to do a BMR to it. While trying to choose BMR, automatic, it said the existing disk layout was incompatible, select manual to manually map the partitions, I don't recall. Anyways, they looked the same (OS, recovery, a couple other misc. small partitions that are common to modern OS's). It still didn't like it so I just wiped the drive completely then it seemed happier to run in automatic mode. Didn't much get in the way but was just odd. Again, once complete, laptop is right back where I left it. Excellent job.