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Back-up Issues


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I don't know if I can explain this clearly but I like to back up Launch-box onto an external hard drive using either Windows natural back-up feature called file history or by simply dragging the folder onto an external hard drive (both aren't working like I wish).
The problem I'm facing is if a file gets created in Launch-box on my C drive and backed up to my external but then I later delete it because I no longer need it it will still remain in the external unless I delete it there as well. Coping a folder over a folder replaces similar files but doesn't seem to remove extra files. This means over time a bunch of useless files that either I or some program creates but no longer need will build up taking up valuable space on my external.
Is there a way to copy a folder completely so the folder in a back-up has exactly the same files and no more? I hate having to delete the old back-up so I can create a new one.

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What you're wanting to do is create a 'mirror' of your C:\LaunchBox folder to your external backup E:\LaunchBox folder.

I use FreeFileSync for this on my cab.  You set your source folder and destination folders and then have it compare File Name, Time and Size [default] (and/or more detailed comparisons) between the 2 folders. It will of course recurse through subfolders as well.  Then for the synchronize options choose Mirror.  This will:

  • Add any files from the source that don't exist in the destination, to the destination.
  • Replace any files in the destination that have the same name as one in the source but have a different file size or date stamp.
  • Remove any files in the destination that don't exist in the source. (this is the part that solves your issue)
  • Skip over any files that are the same (per your compare criteria).
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That sounds EXACTLY like what I need. I looked the program up, it sounds like it used to be bad for computers as it contained malware but I think they are considered okay now. I will give FreeFileSync a try on my next computer backup and let you know if it worked.

I was hoping Window's would have a back-up option that does what your saying FreeFileSync does already built in it's own native back-up so I wouldn't have to download additional, possibly unsafe software that might add to my process list and slow my computer but unless anybody has any ideas I guess FreeFileSync will have to do.

Thank you for your help.

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2 hours ago, starfiretbt said:

it sounds like it used to be bad for computers

Not sure. Maybe if you use some silly 3rd party virus scanner software and it thinks it is.  I've been using it for about 4-5 years now without issue.  Windows Security (Windows Defender) has never balked either.  It has a pretty small footprint (< 50MB) and is actively updated.  I know several users on the forum use it and even LB admin says it's "highly recommended".

It doesn't have any constantly running Process or Services unless you setup the RealTimeSync.  Otherwise it only runs when you start it.

It does store some data in 'C:\Users\Joe\AppData\Roaming\FreeFileSync'.  But we're talking like 12KB.  You could always become an upstanding end-user and support them by getting their "Donation Edition". That way you can install it portable (and get a couple other added features).  I tried that Edition for a couple of revisions (never the portable install though) and for me, the extra features didn't make much difference for my use. 


4 hours ago, starfiretbt said:

additional, possibly unsafe software that might add to my process list and slow my computer

If you're that [unnecessarily] worried about it, you could always use robocopy.  It's a Windows [built-in] command similar of copy and xcopy.  You'd need to look up the command line parameters for the mirror operation, but it will do the exact same thing as FreeFileSync.  Just without the fancy GUI.  You'd need to run it directly from the Windows Command Prompt or create a batch file (or a PowerShell or AutoHotkey script, if you're so inclined).

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