Using Robocopy to Mirror Directories

by Barry Dysert
(last updated October 9, 2017)

1

Robocopy is the tool to use when working with entire directories, since that's what it was designed to do. Let's say you want to "mirror" directories, i.e., make two directory trees contain identical files/folders. This is similar to using the /E switch (which is covered under the tip titled "Using Robocopy to Copy Entire Directories") along with the /PURGE switch. (The /PURGE switch tells Robocopy to delete destination files/folders that no longer exist in source.) The shorthand switch to mirror directories is /MIR, so the command to mirror directories is:

C:\> ROBOCOPY C:\Temp1 C:\Temp3 /MIR

This results in the creation of C:\Temp3, and all of the files and folders under C:\Temp1 will be copied to the newly built tree under C:\Temp3. In addition, if C:\Temp3 already existed, any files in its tree that are not in the C:\Temp1 tree will be deleted from the C:\Temp3 tree.

 This tip (13197) applies to Windows 7, 8, and 10.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 30 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer.  He is currently a senior software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. ...

MORE FROM BARRY

How to Remove Cortana's Search Box

If you want to free up some space on the taskbar, consider eliminating Cortana's search box. This tip tells you how.

Discover More

Changing a Program's Compatibility Settings

If an older program no longer runs under Windows, you may still be able to get some life out of it by changing its ...

Discover More

Controlling the Mouse Pointer Speed

One of the personalization settings you can control is how fast the cursor moves when you move your mouse. You can ...

Discover More
More WindowsTips

Removing a File Type Program Association

Removing a file type program association is a task for third-party utilities. You can, however, change the association ...

Discover More

Saving a Windows Search

Windows has a built-in search utility that allows you to search for strings inside of files. You can even save your ...

Discover More

Seeing which Files are Compressed

Compressed files can make it easier to store a lot of information on a hard drive. However, compressed files aren't that ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is five more than 4?

2017-10-10 11:55:22

Len Richard

I didn't understand exactly what mir did. I copied around 300 cds to an external drive, then delete them from the folder they were in, so I could store more there for backup. When I again backed up this folder to my external drive it wiped out everything i had previously backed up. I did a googlie on this and discovered I was not the only person who got screwed. There needs to be a clear Warning Visible that nobody can miss explaining this. I tried 10 free recover tools, none worked. I finally found a trial version of a recover software, it worked and it cost be 70 bucks to purchase it. It was either that or lose everything. Nice to notice you have this explained. Too bad every other person offering advice doesn't.


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.