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How to backup my disc W11

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Hi All


Hope this is not a dumb question, if its in the wrong place pls advise.  I am a simple home domestic user, nothing special to guard.  I am quite savvy but not nerd quality.


I find myself utterly bamboozled by all the hype on protecting my pc storage.


What I want to do (I think) is create a backup using an external Hard drive (1TB Maxtor usb 3) that can be used to restore to a replacement drive should my main PC  C drive crash.


This happened to me before without warning and the result was a month of sweat and lost programs - some irreplaceable.


I dont want to go through that trauma again.  So in the event of a crash I want to be able to fit a new equivalent drive, same size and restore my OS AND my apps to get up and running again

I realise I must make a clone image etc, but also need to be able to boot obviously.  The windows backup will only get your original W11 OS up again (so they say)  but you lose all your apps and settings, passwords etc


BTW I am not concerned about saving my data as I can manage that FWIW on a separate USB stick myself - no rocket science needed


Its seems a simple request but of course with M$ and W11 and Google  - they dont want you to have your independence . I afraid if I get it wrong I will end up with a brick.  Everything is so convoluted with security levels and passwords. Its so easy for these to go out of sync


Can anyone advise here?

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