Copy tool

Look elsewhere for faster, more-flexible free copy managers.

Copy managers have long been popular third-party utilities, offering to speed up, schedule, or simplify the process of copying files and folders, singly or in batches, compared with the built-in Windows tool. WinMend File Copy's developers claim it boosts copying speeds by up to 300 percent over the Windows command. It adds the ability to pause and resume downloads, display skipped files, and other features typical of aftermarket copy managers.

WinMend File Copy collects the basic functions of copying files and folders in a colorful, easy-to-use interface, with a list view for batches. Tabs labeled Our Products and About Us linked to the developer's Web site and other software and freeware products in a nonintrusive way. The program has drag-and-drop capability, batch listing, and a front panel buffer size slider as well as source and destination directory fields and buttons for adding and removing items from the source list. We selected a 7GB folder and a destination path, and then clicked Copy. A dialog displayed twin progress bars, one for each file and another showing total progress, as well as the usual file size, transfer rate, elapsed time, and such. We ran the process four times, averaging about 35MBps and 3:24. Unfortunately, Windows 7 copied the same file to the same directory an average of 20MBps faster and 45 to 50 seconds quicker. That's not a minor difference; it's a major butt-kicking, amounting to nearly a minute for a single DVD movie. We were surprised, since the program claims to make dramatic improvements, but even adjusting the buffer setting made no difference, let alone improvement.

We've tried lots of copy managers, and most have something to recommend. WinMend File Copy is easy to use and adds some useful features, but it doesn't come close to the scheduling and configuration options of some other free tools, nor does it seem able to do better than Windows in its most essential function: copying files. There are much better freeware copy managers out there.

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