Robocopy: Deleting Folder Files

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  1. Posts : 17,015
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 22H2 Build 19045.4170
       #11

    Michael,

    1 You mention sizes.
    - In general, your own files are going to be in these folders unless you have deliberately chosen other locations. You can get to each one by pasting the folder paths into File explorer's address bar [funny % symbols and all].
    C:\Users\%UserName%\Documents
    [Instead of this, I RoboCopy backup C:\Users\%UserName%\Documents\Business, C:\Users\%UserName%\Documents\Personal, C:\Users\%UserName%\Documents\IS, ... because I have some applications that create their own subfolders within C:\Users\%UserName%\Documents which they use to save rubbish that I haven't the slightest interest in.]
    C:\Users\%UserName%\Music
    C:\Users\%UserName%\Videos
    C:\Users\%UserName%\Desktop,
    C:\Users\%UserName%\Downloads
    [C:\Users\%UserName%\Favorites - now out of use]
    C:\Users\%UserName%\Pictures
    - If you use MSOffice Outlook then your data file might be local [pop3, .pst] or merely a front-end for its online server [imap, .ost]. You might also have a mixture of both. If it is local then it is, by default, in
    C:\Users\%UserName%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook
    and is, by default, called Outlook.pst
    - Other applications might well put important user files in awkward places but Outlook is the one I know about.
    - Many applications have important configuration files in awkward places and I treat RoboCopy backing up many of them as though they were my own files. But learning what & where is on an application by application basis. I was inspired to go looking by my success with Outlook's configuration files, which are well documented.
    I suggest you right-click on the folders you want to back up to calculate how big they are in total.


    2 In general, you would want your backup disk to be big enough to hold many years of backups of your own files.
    - So you would want something substantially bigger than the total size of your own files.
    - Naturally, "substantially bigger" is not a defined term.
    - I looked at my own files a decade ago & compared them with their size on an old computer. I then decided that the annual growth rate calculated from that would continue for a decade more and I decided I needed backup disks that could hold that mush. Then I multiplied my answer by ten. It has worked for me but I might as well have rolled some dice.
    In general, you would want your backup disk to be big enough to hold several full system images i.e. be several times the size of your C:\ drive. By keeping several images instead of always overwriting them, you are protected from the [rare] failure of your system imaging utility to restore an image successfully. I started using system imaging a decade ago and I have only had two restoration failures from amongst the 145 system images I have not yet weeded out.


    3 In general, you would back up in two ways.
    - A "system image" of the entire C:\ drive, and
    - Separate backups of your own files.
    But the best choice / mix of choices depends on how you have arranged your disks.
    - My OS & installed applications are on my C:\ drive. I back that up by making a system image.
    - My own files [including my Outlook.pst] are on a separate disk. I back them up by RoboCopying.
    - This arrangement is very useful. It means I can make & restore system images of the C:\ drive without disturbing my own files. It also means my system images are only 20-40GB each so my 4TB backup drives can hold many of them [and it was only a couple of years ago that I upgraded from my previous 1TB backup drives - this was driven primarily by my laziness in weeding out old system images for my four computers].
    Like you, I back up to two backup disks [disk 1 one week, disk 2 the next week].
    - Well, actually, I also have a partial backup to an SD card every hour. It's a 512GB MicroSD card and is ample despite my large audio collection.
    - And I backup from my main computers to my other computers whenever I feel like it [probably a couple of times a week].


    4 My system image is made using Acronis True Image. I've used Macrium Reflect a few times just for practice and I appreciate that it is very popular.
    All the backups of my own files are made using RoboCopy.


    5 If you use two backup disks and if you check that you can still read them both every week then you need not be overly bothered by considerations of which technology is the most durable. However, if you are going to spend money on them in the future do consider this:-
    - an external USB-connected HDD/SSD is more durable than a USB memory stick.
    - an external USB-connected SSD is more durable then an external USB-connected HDD but large ones are also hideously expensive compared to HDDs. All my external USB-connected backup disks are HDDs.
    - a USB memory stick tends to fail in writing first. It might remain readable for a decade or more. So, provided you check them frequently enough for your backup schedule, you should not actually suffer by using USB memory sticks for your backups.


    6 I think the only significant difference between what you do and what I do is that you are going to go in afterwards and delete many of your source files to free up space.
    That will affect whether or not you use the /MIR switch in RoboCopy.
    - Using it would delete backups for which you had deleted the source files.
    - But you can use RoboCopy without the /MIR switch.
    You could post your intended RoboCopy commands / batch file[s] if you wanted me to look over them.


    I think I've covered everything,
    All the best,
    Denis
    Last edited by Try3; 09 Apr 2023 at 12:50.
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 331
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #12

    At first glance i am a bit overwhelmed by your narrative, but should be able to start tackling it later tonight.

    In one of my failed attempts I looked at Macrium Reflect but did not get far.

    I have been planing on having 3 independent drives: the main one and two mirrors.


    I have been trying to copy and paste the headers at my C:

    I cannot copy any of them

    Is there some way I could send you that index?

    Other ones?

    I need to get some of the load off my current main drive. Any thoughts for some load reduction?

    Maybe I could extract some of the files in the Program or Program (X86) files?

    Roughly there are about 75 or so files in each.

    If so what do I need to do set up the two downstream drives?

    Thanks again for your guidance.
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 17,015
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 22H2 Build 19045.4170
       #13

    1 "I have been planing on having 3 independent drives: the main one and two mirrors."
    I do not try to mirror drives[which is normally called cloning if I have understood you correctly]. I use system images & RoboCopying.
    I think system imaging is better than creating clones because you can keep multiple system images on one backup drive but you would have to have multiple backup drives each containing one clone.
    I've seen posts in which people say they prefer cloning but I've never seen a reason.


    2 "I have been trying to copy and paste the headers at my C:"
    I don't know what you mean by headers.


    3 "I need to get some of the load off my current main drive. Any thoughts for some load reduction?"
    Yes, get your system image & multiple RoboCopy backups made then you can delete some of your own files that you do not want to use very often.
    Use Disk clean frequently to remove the temp files Windows makes.
    Disk Cleanup - TenForumsTutorials
    You could also consider buying a bigger disk.


    4 "Maybe I could extract some of the files in the Program or Program (X86) files?"
    Look through Control panel, [large/Small icons view], Programs and features for any applications you do not use anymore & uninstall them from there.
    Or you can do this in Settings, Apps.
    Don't try to alter anything in the Program files or Program files (x86) folders yourself.


    5 "If so what do I need to do set up the two downstream drives?"
    Sorry, I don't know what you mean here either.
    As long as you have formatted them so they can be read by the OS, you do not need to prepare the backup drives for your system images & your RoboCoying. You can just get on with them.


    6 There are tools that can show you how much space is being used in different folder trees. The one I use is JamSoftware TreeSize (free).
    Robocopy: Deleting Folder Files-lt10-treefilesize-report-posted.png
    You can open up any of the branches to see what's in them just like navigating around with File explorer.



    All the best,
    Denis
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 331
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #14

    Sunday Evening my time.
    I think have a grasp on your first topic. I will need to study it deeper tomorrow.

    BTW. I do not have Outlook, or desire to purchase or use it.

    Do you have any suggestions for an Opens Source track?
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 2,175
    Windows 11 Pro (latest update ... forever anal)
       #15

    mikeincousa said:
    In one of my failed attempts I looked at Macrium Reflect but did not get far.
    IMHO, programs like Robocopy are much better for copying/backing up personal data files, in native format. Macrium Reflect is an ideal option for system drive backup/images

    Another option is SyncBackfree for backing up files in native format. Altho I use Robocopy extensively, I frequently find it misses the odd file here and there. Syncbackfree can compare the source and destination and supply the missing files. It can be used as the complete backup in its own right, but marginally slower than Robocopy.
      My Computers


  6. Posts : 17,015
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 22H2 Build 19045.4170
       #16

    1 "Do you have any suggestions for a Opens Source track?"
    No, I use Windows, Windows commands & [commercial] Windows applications.
    I use Acronis True Image for system images.

    mikeincousa said:
    In one of my failed attempts I looked at Macrium Reflect but did not get far.
    You might continue to use Macrium reflect for yours. Unlike idgat, I failed to notice those last few words.

    There are others.
    AOMEI Backupper Standard Edition - Free Backup Software for Windows - Free version is apparently easy to use.
    EaseUS ToDo Backup - Free version
    Paragon Backup & Recovery - Free version

    Macrium Reflect is often recommended in this forum for making system images.
    - There are so many Macrium Reflect evangelists in this forum that you can get almost instant help with any problems you have using it.
    - Its current free version [v8.0.7167] is the last planned one and its final security patch will be on 1st January 2024.
    - Thereafter, Macrium Reflect will provide free 30 day trials but not permanently-free versions. This has already been demonstrated by experimentation - see post #44 of another thread.

    Macrium Software Macrium Reflect Free
    Backup and Restore with Macrium Reflect - TenForumsTutorials - This includes making their boot disk & optionally adding a Macrium reflect option to your boot menu.
    Macrium Reflect KnowledgeBase - user guide [version-independent link]
    Additionally, Macrium reflect users have posted that its boot disk has better startup repair capabilities than Windows installation USBs.
    Macrium Reflect Boot disk - Fix Boot Problems - MacriumReflectKB
    Use Macrium Reflect Rescue Media to Fix Windows Boot Issues - TenForumsTutorials


    2 "I do not have Outlook, or desire to purchase or use it."
    That's fine. I named it only to help me explain cases of user files being in unexpected places.
    [I've just seen idgat's post above. The only problem I've ever had is with RoboCopying Outlook files but I dealt with that by skipping them if Outlook was running.]

    3 And do post your planned RoboCopy commands if you want me to comment on them. I'm keen to help you get the first run done so your files are backed up. We can continue to discuss finer details afterwards.


    All the best,
    Denis
    Last edited by Try3; 09 Apr 2023 at 21:55.
      My Computer


  7. Posts : 17,015
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 22H2 Build 19045.4170
       #17

    Michael,

    I've finished tinkering with my last post [adding in further Macrium notes & links to equivalents].

    Night,
    Denis
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 331
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #18

    You point about the backup drives is well taken.
    I have an installed version of ANOMEI. I find it friendly. I did not know that they have a backup track. May have just missed it years past?

    AOMEI Backupper Standard Edition - Free Backup Software for Windows

    This will be my next track, along with installing TreeSizeFreeSetup.


    I needed figure how how to clear a "Permission Error" in one of my flash drives. Looks like I have succeeded.


    I have gobs of notes in the main drive from various music explorations: these are not time sensitive.

    So I am thinking that I could move them out of the main drive and put them in the wired drive.

    I am thinking that could give me some head-space in the main drive. If I make a mistake it will not be a catastrophe, My feeble musical skills have snowballed so I really do not to keep them. Any thoughts ?


    Bye for now.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Hi Denis: I have installed "TreeSize".

    I was uncertain how to interpret the output.

    I turned to Window System Summary.

    Here are the results:

    System Summary
    Hardware Resources
    Components
    Storage
    Drives
    Size 118 GB
    Free Space 3.94 GB

    TreeSize top 2
    67.3 GB User
    17.4 GB Windows

    Feeb that I am. it seems like there is difference between the two runs or there is a gap somewhere that is beyond the scope of the this run.

    Thanks for any thoughts.
      My Computer


  9. Posts : 17,015
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 22H2 Build 19045.4170
       #19

    Michael,

    1 "I needed figure how how to clear a "Permission Error" in one of my flash drives. Looks like I have succeeded."
    You have not mentioned this before.
    Real permission errors on a flash drive are unusual.
    If it refuses write permission it's commonly because it is defective.

    2 "I could move them out of the main drive and put them in the wired drive. ... Any thoughts ?"
    You can do this if you want.
    Start off as you mean to carry on - two backups of everything.
    I think by "wired drive" you mean an external USB-connected disk.

    3 I do not see anything useful in the Window System Summary results except that it tells me your disk is 118GB. You could always post your TreeSize diagram.

    Denis
      My Computer


  10. Posts : 331
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #20

    1. That flash drives seems to okay but noticed some heating before I set the permissions. I will check it again,

    2. By "Wired Drive" I mean a drive in an enclosure running on USB3. I never got around to setting up the second bay.

    3. I figured out how to export data from Free, then figured out (again) how to make a file using it.

    Seems Ten Forums dissolves what ever I have written if I go to another screen. Annoying,

    I need to stop right now but will come back later today. I should be able to figure out how to paste plain text.

    Bye for now.
      My Computer


 

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