This one is for Windows 7. Yes, I have to use Windows, everyone else is doing it…! – )

I bought a new 2Tb external hard drive and I was looking for a simple way to keep a copy of my files automatically. I was doing it manually but it takes to long to think about it and actually do it every couple of days.

I just found SyncToy that looks nice so I decided to give it a try.

The first step is to make sure my 2Tb external drive always gets the same drive letter no matter how many other drives or USB keys I have plugged in. So go to “Computer Management” (right click over “Computer” icon in your desktop, chose “Manage”. Then click over Storage / Disk Management. In there you can see all your disks and partitions, right click over the corresponding partition and chose “Change drive letter and paths…”, it will open a new dialog:


Click the change button and give it a new letter in the combo box to the right:


You will get this warning:


which is normal but you don’t care, your drive is not being used by other applications, right? Don’t mess around with your C: drive :-D

Now fire up your SyncToy:


and create a new folder pair, as they call it:


The down side is that you need to create the base folder for your file sync, in my case I want everything inside a folder with name “sync-hostname”, and then same sub folder name, so I have to create the sub folder “Users” and “pedro” by hand.

Then you need to chose the type of sync, I chose contribute because I want to keep old files.


Another thing you might want to do, unselect some of the folders like the temp folders, so in the main screen click over your new folder pair and chose “Change options…”, in there click over “Select subfolder” and in the list of all the folders just untick the undesirable ones. I disabled AppData\Local*.

Now just hit the “Run” button!

This is a manual sync. You can also have an automatic sync running every day, open SyncToy’s “Help” menu and you have a “Learn how to schedule SyncToy…” menu entry, it is pretty simple.


Author: pedro_nf

Independent contractor on IT solutions and automation

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