How to Solve: FileHistory Error 201 in Windows 10

FileHistory is a handy feature in Windows 10 that allows you to back up and restore files in case something goes wrong with your computer. As a reminder, FileHistory has replaced Backup and Restore as the primary backup tool in Windows 10.

As you can see, backing up and restoring files with File History is a fairly simple process. Unfortunately, sometimes the tool fails to back up your files. When this problem occurs, error 201 is often displayed on the screen. Let’s take a look at how you can quickly solve this problem.

What Causes FileHistory 201 Error in Windows 10

FileHistory is a built-in Windows tool that you can use to back up your files. However, when you use FileHistory to back up files, especially when adding files to the Documents directory, you may encounter error code 201. When this error occurs, the operation is aborted.

So, do you know how to fix File History error 201? In general, File History error 201 can be caused by a number of reasons, such as:

  • File name contains special characters
  • The path or file name is too long
  • Folder compression problem
  • Windows 10 error
  • Damaged system files

So, do you know how to fix this 201 file history error? In the following article, we will tell you how to fix the file history problem that is not working in Windows 10.

How to Repair FileHistory Error 201 in Windows 10

Install pending Windows updates

It turns out that this problem can also be caused by a Windows 10 error that was originally caused by a faulty Windows Update that affected the File History service.

Fortunately, Microsoft has already released a fix for this problem and included it in a Windows update that will be released in late 2019. If your version of Windows is already updated, you have already installed the patch and this method is not applicable.

However, if you haven’t installed the latest pending updates or are actively blocking them, you can solve the problem by making Windows Update install all pending updates (including optional ones). This procedure has been validated by several users to fix the 201 File History error.

  1. Open the Run dialog box by pressing the Windows + R key combination. Then type “ms settings:windowsupdate” and press Enter to open the Windows Update tab in the Settings app.
  2. Once on the Windows Update screen, switch to the right pane and click Check for updates.
  3. Then follow the instructions on the screen to finish installing any pending Windows updates.
  4. If you have many updates waiting to be installed, your computer may ask you to reboot before installing each one.
  5. In this case, follow the instructions, but be sure to return to the same Windows Update screen after the next boot to finish installing the remaining updates.
  6. After successfully updating Windows, reboot your computer one last time and see if the problem is resolved the next time you start the system.

Launch the file and folder troubleshooter

You may have a permissions issue that is preventing you from backing up your content with the FileHistory utility. If this scenario applies, you should start this troubleshooting guide by running the File and Folder Troubleshooter.

Several affected users have confirmed that this process fixed the FileHistory 201 error, and they were able to use the FileHistory utility normally.

  1. Open your default browser, go to the Windows Fire and Folder Troubleshooter download page and click Download.
  2. Wait for the download to complete, then double-click the file you just downloaded and click Yes on UAC (User Account Control) to grant administrator access.
  3. Once you get to the first screen of the File and Folder Troubleshooter, first click the Advanced hyperlink and then check the Apply repairs automatically box.
  4. When the utility is set up and ready to go, click Next to start the Windows File and Folder Troubleshooter scan.
  5. Wait for the initial scan to complete, then follow the on-screen instructions to apply the recommended fixes (if needed).
  6. Then restart your computer and see if the problem is resolved the next time you start your system.

Remove the special characters from the file names

If the file you are trying to save using file history contains special characters (typical foreign language characters), this may be the cause of error 201.

There are a number of user reports that solve this problem by removing special characters such as ä, ö, ü, and ß from the file name. This is strange because the official documentation does not say anything about such a restriction.

Therefore, if you encounter this problem when trying to save files that contain language-specific special characters, remove them from the file name and try the process again.

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Mark Ginter is a tech blogger with a passion for all things gadgets and gizmos. A self-proclaimed "geek", Mark has been blogging about technology for over 15 years. His blog,, covers a wide range of topics including new product releases, industry news, and tips and tricks for getting the most out of your devices. If you're looking for someone who can keep you up-to-date with all the latest tech news and developments, then be sure to follow him over at Microsoft.