Copy and paste folders and files in bulk


Active member
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4:06 AM
Windows 11 Pro
In File Explorer, when I copy pictures from my mobile phone to my PC, this is normally done through copying and pasting the files into one sub-folder, for example, MY PICTURES (FOLDER) > 2024 (SUBFOLDER) with the remainder of the conflicts i.e. duplicate files which I choose not to copy as shown in my attached screenshot:

Screenshot 2024-05-14 114045.png

In another project, I made a backup of my data by copying folders and files into another external HDD.

A sample structure is:

My Files (FOLDER) > My Documents (SUBFOLDER) > Bank Statements (SUBFOLDER) > Individual Files...
My Files (FOLDER) > My Documents (SUBFOLDER) > Creditors (SUBFOLDER) > Individual Files...
My Files (FOLDER) > My Documents (SUBFOLDER) > Debtors (SUBFOLDER) > Individual Files...


When I try to copy for example the separate folders like Bank Statements (SUBFOLDER) and Creditors (SUBFOLDER) and Debtors (SUBFOLDER) in one go, I always hope that Windows will only copy the new individual files and not duplicate any existing files or even subfolders. Is this correct? It seems quite hard to monitor this.

I sometimes put the subfolders in 'Date modified' order to see from when I should add new subfolders or files, so I don't have to copy and paste all of them, but I still don't know if this is correct.

Yesterday I had 1TB of videos to copy to an existing copy of the original folder but I am still not sure if Windows overwrote some of the existing folders and files or if it just added changed files...
Windows Build/Version
Windows 11 23H2

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro
If the files exist in the destination location Windows will prompt you for what action you want to take.

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
Personally I don’t have time for copying files so I would just monitor the top most folder (or folders of your choosing in separate jobs) and get FreeFileSync to mirror the content to your backup.

I use FreeFileSync/RealTimeSync
Free forever, unrestricted, easy, never misses a beat, highly configerable.

FreeFileSync Mirror Synchronisation is what I use.

The donation version has negligible differences I have found, but I like to donate to them every couple of months because it’s so good and they’re very generous..

Once your mirror config is created, you can either make a FreeFileSync job and save it to your desktop or somewhere of your choosing so you can manually instigate the mirror process, or use RealTimeSync (that comes within this software) to create a a RealTimeSync job from your mirror config file and place the RealTimeSync file in your startup folder. This will monitor your FreeFileSync backup jobs in real time

If you have created more than one FreeFileSync jobs, you can have them run all together and save them as a batch file and then as above, create a task for it to run manually, or import it into RealTimeSync so it monitors and runs in real time.

When a RealTimeSync job is created and set to run in your Startup folder (or you can use the tutorial for creating tasks for FreeFileSync and use the same process for a RealTimeSync job task), it will notice any changes made to your folder and then mirror the change to your external at an interval after detection that you can set.


Check the tutorials for an idea of how it works.


It’s very user friendly so navigation around the software hopefully isn’t a complicated process.
Last edited:

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Many thanks for your advice. I will have a look at FreeFileSync/RealTimeSync.

I would just monitor the top most folder (or folders of your choosing in separate jobs)

On a simple level, I sort 'Date modified' > 'Descending' in File Explorer and then I know which files and/or data have been recently added and/or changed.

Screenshot 2024-06-09 065556.png

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro
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