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SyncToy

Editors' Review

by   / December 05, 2008

If you're looking for a convenient, uncomplicated, and stable synchronization tool, you could do much, much worse than Microsoft's SyncToy. Part of the Windows XP PowerToys add-ons, this tool makes it easy to keep folder contents identical on one machine or across a network.

The first time you run it, SyncToy will guide you through creating a pair of linked folders. Labeled as Left and Right, it will then ask you to choose from one of five synchronization methods. Echo works like a standard one-way sync, copying all files from Left to Right. Synchronize is bidirectional; Contribute works like Echo but it won't delete files removed from the Left folder; Subscribe only updates files in common that have been updated; and Combine merges Synchronize and Contribute so that files are updated in both directions, but none are deleted. SyncToy does support encrypted files.

SyncToy also offers up a preview, preventing accidental loss of data. However, the two feature omissions are hard to ignore: you can't synchronize across the Internet, and there's no scheduler. For the former, Microsoft does offer a different tool, FolderShare, but by requiring users to manually sync all folders leaves SyncToy behind other free backup apps.

What do you need to know about free software?

Editors' Review

by   / December 05, 2008

If you're looking for a convenient, uncomplicated, and stable synchronization tool, you could do much, much worse than Microsoft's SyncToy. Part of the Windows XP PowerToys add-ons, this tool makes it easy to keep folder contents identical on one machine or across a network.

The first time you run it, SyncToy will guide you through creating a pair of linked folders. Labeled as Left and Right, it will then ask you to choose from one of five synchronization methods. Echo works like a standard one-way sync, copying all files from Left to Right. Synchronize is bidirectional; Contribute works like Echo but it won't delete files removed from the Left folder; Subscribe only updates files in common that have been updated; and Combine merges Synchronize and Contribute so that files are updated in both directions, but none are deleted. SyncToy does support encrypted files.

SyncToy also offers up a preview, preventing accidental loss of data. However, the two feature omissions are hard to ignore: you can't synchronize across the Internet, and there's no scheduler. For the former, Microsoft does offer a different tool, FolderShare, but by requiring users to manually sync all folders leaves SyncToy behind other free backup apps.

User Reviews
  • All Versions

    3.9

    out of 68 votes

    • 5 star 24
    • 4 star 28
    • 3 star 6
    • 2 star 3
    • 1 star 7
 
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Full Specifications

What's new in version 2.1

Version 2.1 may include unspecified updates, enhancements, or bug fixes.

General

Publisher Microsoft
Publisher web site http://www.microsoft.com/
Release Date February 24, 2010
Date Added February 24, 2010
Version 2.1

Category

Category Utilities & Operating Systems
Subcategory File Management

Operating Systems

Operating Systems Windows XP/Vista/7
Additional Requirements Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0

Download Information

File Size 2.88MB
File Name SyncToySetupPackage_v21_x86.exe

Popularity

Total Downloads 149,425
Downloads Last Week 17

Pricing

License Model Free
Limitations Not available
Price Free
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