One of the things I continue to run across is how to easily backup folders from a workstation to an external source. One of the easiest and cheapest solutions is a power toy from Microsoft called SyncToy. When I say cheap, I mean cheap. It is a free download offered by Microsoft from the list of their power toys. It is also now compatible with Vista.
SyncToy creates pairs called folder pairs. You set up a folder pair for each backup that you want to create. The left folder is your source and the right folder is your backup location. Once you have those parameters defined you then set up how you want to synchronize your folders. You can choose from the below options.
- Synchronize: New and and updated files are copied between the two folders. When you rename or delete a folder it is repeated on each side.
- Echo: New and updated files are copied from the left to the right side. When you rename or delete a folder is is repeated on the other folder.
- Contribute: New and updated files are copied from the left to the right side. When you rename a folder is is also repeated on the other folder. Deletes are not performed an each folder.
- Combine: New and updated files are copied both ways. This option ignores all renamed and deleted files.
Once you have this option set up you will need to name your folder pair. You will now manually be able to backup up your date by going into SyncToy. If you want to take it one step further I would recommend setting up a scheduled task to run daily on your PC to insure the backup stays current.
I will try to get some screen shots taken of the setup process so everybody can help visualize the steps. On a side note version 2.0 is out in Beta but I have not had a chance to use it yet. Hopefully I will find time to review the new SyncTool version in the near future.
Current Version – v1.4
Microsoft Download Link