Free Windows file sync programs? FreeFileSync, etc.

Started Sep 22, 2022 | Discussions thread
foot Veteran Member • Posts: 4,869
Re: Free Windows file sync programs? FreeFileSync, etc.

LynniePad wrote:

foot wrote:

LynniePad wrote:

foot wrote:

Carey Brown wrote:

LynniePad wrote:

Carey Brown wrote:

LynniePad wrote:

Eric Carlson wrote:

LynniePad wrote:

Robocopy has been around for a while, Win7 at least.

Since Windows NT 4.0 resource kit. A really long time ago. It's great for IT work, and for people who grew up using the command line, though not necessarily ideal for people not used to using a command prompt.

Yes, but some early versions were rather limited. I mentioned Win7 because it was likely the first version that many users employed. Wikipedia discusses the history.

I’d suggest that the computer skills required for command line operation are rather less than those required for wrangling LR and PS, and for the many other complex activities often recommended by our correspondents. Craig, for example, makes my head hurt.

I’ve been using Robocopy for backup since 2019 with good results. There does seem to be some reluctance to use the program, but it’s ideal for my requirements.

Does Robocopy support versioning?

No, but when necessary, I keep multiple versions of a developing project in the working folder: (thesis001.docx, thesis002.docx, thesis003.docx etc.).

I use FreeFileSync which has versioning. On two critical folder hierarchies that are in constant change I set up FFS script to back them up with versioning every hour. Runs in the background and is very fast.

In addition to the quick Robocopy backup, I regularly back up the whole working folder system, without overwriting, so there’s about 2 years of versioning. Note that the working folder is only 30Gb, and there’s a separate backup system for my photo archive (which is also supplemented by a Robocopy routine).

What some correspondents don’t seem to understand is that, after the initial backup, subsequent runs only copy new or changed files by default. That, plus the implementation of multi-tasking makes for very quick backup. The first time that I used MT with SSD source and destination drives, I thought that the procedure had failed because it was done in an instant.

On two critical folder hierarchies that are in constant change

any issues when the files are changed while being sync'ed?

Maybe that’s an argument for manually initiated backup?

Some of the backup/sync options promoted in this thread are rather bizarre. I just use Robocopy, which is free.

For systems doing critical work, say a server handling online orders, it's more complicated, since losing orders/payments hurts the user confidence and cash flow

also many files with many changes have to stay in sync. You wouldn't want to miss the order yet get the payment, or get the order and miss the payment. Customer confidence would suffer.

No online server in our office, just some rather critical word processing needs, where Robocopy is absolutely ideal for quick and secure backup. We regularly produce (or edit) 400 page technical monographs with many supporting sections. Losing any of this stuff is not an option.

Typically, a full day’s work can be saved (added to the backup copy) in less than a second, and this is supported by periodic full backups to external HDDs.

sure, for backups. But backups don't cover all situations

if the data file somehow gets corrupted, or loses it's data, then the process is only backing up bad data.

I've had this happen to me, more than once. It could be due to some strange bug in the program (I'm looking at you, notepad++) or operator error (and now I'm looking at me...*sigh*)

versioning is the way to go

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