The Compare & Sync Folders has been developed with a dual purpose in mind:

To be easy to use for beginners, but also provide the ability to fine-tune synchronization settings for the most exacting professionals.

The app can synchronize multiple pairs of folders at the same time. Using a powerful preview mode you can view the changes before sync and change the operation with files, if required. The app also provides ROBUST tools to filter your files and folder so that you sync EXACTLY what you want.

Do you have terabytes (TB) of data to sync? No problem!

Compare & Sync Folders has been specifically optimized to work with EXTREMELY LARGE FILES and data sources, reliably and efficiently.

Compare & Sync Folders is perfect for backups to all media destinations:

USB, memory cards, disks on remote computers within your network, folders on Cloud services (Dropbox, etc.) Compare & Sync Folders is the REAL and the ONLY bidirectional synchronization app that you will ever need!

Install VPN Server Configurator, and you can synchronize folders on a remote Mac from ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD!

Install Sync Folders Pro, and you can synchronize folders "on the fly" using our REAL TIME SYNC technology or by SCHEDULE!

 
FOR BEGINNERS
  • Select two folders to synchronize.
  • Click "Sync" button.

FOR THE MOST EXACTING PROFESSIONALS:

  • 9 sync modes (including the real bidirectional synchronization).
  • 6 comparison modes (Timestamp, checksum, …).
  • 9 modes of file operations. Powerful Preview mode. Change the operation with files before sync, if required.
  • 5 search modes for items of the Preview table (by name, path, name & path, …).
  • 11 filter modes for items of the Preview table (Missing&Diffs, Missing, Diffs, Equal, …).
  • Compare files using QuickLook and / or "Line by Line" comparison before sync.
  • Execution operations for the selected items of the Preview table.
  • Copy the selected items (Missing, Diffs, …) of the Preview table into the third folder.
  • Powerful folder filter and / or file filter.
  • Resolving the file versions conflict.
  • Extremely fast comparison algorithm.
  • Sync multiple pairs of folders in same time.
  • Compare folders, subfolders, files your Mac.
  • Optimized to work with extremely large files and data sources.
 

Features.

  • Sync multiple pairs of folders in same time.
  • Synchronize of Macs across a network. Login information for network folders is retained so they can be automatically mounted the next synchronization.
  • Synchronize external drives (USB, memory cards, etc.) with your Mac, and vice versa.
  • Synchronize between local folders Mac and folders on Cloud services (Dropbox, etc.)
  • 9 sync modes. Real bidirectional synchronization software. Tracking deletions, additions, changes in synchronized folders.
  • 6 comparison modes (Timestamp, checksum, …).
  • 9 modes of file operations. Powerful Preview mode. Change the operation with files before sync, if required.
  • 5 search modes for items of the Preview table (by name, path, name & path, …).
  • 11 filter modes for items of the Preview table (Missing&Diffs, Missing, Diffs, Equal, …).
  • Compare files using QuickLook or "Line by Line" comparison before sync.
  • Shows selected files in the Finder.app
  • Opens selected files in the default app.
  • Execution operations for the selected items of the Preview table.
  • Copy the selected items (Missing, Diffs, …) of the Preview table into the third folder.
  • Powerful filters for files and/or folders on the entry and/or exclusion.
  • Resolving the file versions conflict.
  • Protection against drives shutting down or being dropped during synchronization. Synchronization completed correctly, if during synchronization are turned off synced folders.
  • Minor differences in folder modification time stamps may be ignored or honored. See "Allowable deviation of File Modification Date [sec.]".
  • Saving the deleted files in a specific location ("Folder for deleted files"). Using this mode you are protected against accidental deletion of files, and can always return all files even after re-synchronizing several times. The structure of folders and subfolders is retained in the "Folder for deleted files".
  • Each pairs of folders shows when synchronization was done the last time.
  • The synchronization process is logged.
  • Save / Load the program settings to a file.
 

Installation when using Compare & Sync Folders.

Installation suggestions in order to sync two Macs, to sync Mac and PC.
You should use Sync Mode A<->B or A<+>B.

To sync two Macs using the following schema:

  • Folder Mac#1 -- Network Folder Mac#2.
  • Folder Mac#1 -- USB Drive -- Folder Mac#2.
  • Folder Mac#1 -- Cloud Folder -- Folder Mac#2.
  • Folder Mac#1 -- (other external drive or network resource) -- Folder Mac#2.

For the above item 1 installation of Compare & Sync Folders is only necessary on Mac#1 only.
For the above items 2, 3, 4 Compare & Sync Folders should be installed on both Mac#1 and Mac#2.

To sync Mac and PC using the following schema:

  • Folder Mac -- Network Folder PC.
  • Folder Mac -- USB Drive FAT32 -- Folder PC.
  • Folder Mac -- Cloud Folder -- Folder PC.
  • Folder Mac -- (other external drive or network resource) -- Folder PC.

For the above item 1 you should install the Compare & Sync Folders only on the Mac.
For item 2, 3, 4 you should to install the Compare & Sync Folders on the Mac and install a similar App on PC.


Installation to create backup copies of files.
You should use Sync Mode A+>B or A<+B or A=>B or A<=B.

Compare & Sync Folders creates backup copies of files to any type of storage media that is supported by Mac OS X.

  • Folder Mac#1 >> Network Folder Mac#2.
  • Folder Mac >> Network Folder PC.
  • Folder Mac >> USB Drive.
  • Folder Mac >> Cloud Folder.
  • Folder Mac >> other external drive or network resource.

For all items you should install the Compare & Sync Folders on Mac only.

 

Synchronization.

 

Synchronization of the multiple pairs of folders at the same time.

 

Preview before sync.

 

File operations.

You can change the operation before sync, if required.

Select this option to synchronize folders based on the operations of the preview table. Synchronization process will execute operations based on the preview table.

Select this option to synchronize folders based on the selected sync mode. Synchronization process will execute the reading of the file system, folders comparison, the executing operations based on the selected sync mode.


The synchronization process will not perform actions with the file.


The synchronization process will copy file from the "Folder A" to the "Folder B".

If the file exists in the "Folder B", the synchronization process will delete the old file version from the "Folder B" before copying.


The synchronization process will copy file from the "Folder B" to the "Folder A".

If the file exists in the "Folder A", the synchronization process will delete the old file version from the "Folder A" before copying.


(Resolving the file versions conflict)

The synchronization process will copy file from the "Folder A" to the "Folder B".

If the file exists in the "Folder B", the synchronization process will rename the old file version in the "Folder B" before copying. The new name of the file will contain current date and time.


(Resolving the file versions conflict)

The synchronization process will copy file from the "Folder B" to the "Folder A".

If the file exists in the "Folder A", the synchronization process will rename the old file version in the "Folder A" before copying. The new name of the file will contain current date and time.


The synchronization process will copy file from the "Folder A" to the "Folder C".

If the file exists in the "Folder C", the synchronization process will delete the old file version from the "Folder C" before copying.


The synchronization process will copy file from the "Folder B" to the "Folder C".

If the file exists in the "Folder C", the synchronization process will delete the old file version from the "Folder C" before copying.


The synchronization process will delete file from the "Folder A".


The synchronization process will delete file from the "Folder B".


The synchronization process will delete files from the "Folder A" and "Folder B".


 

Changing the file operation for multiple items

First way: (available for v.1.3.1 and later)

Second way:

  • Show items in the preview table, for which you would like to change file operation, using the table items filter on the toolbar and the search string.
  • Select file operation for the "Set operation" mode.

 

Execution operations for the selected items of the Preview table.

 

Groups of items of the Preview table.

 

Sync modes.

(Bidirectional synchronization mode)

If you add, change, or delete a file from one location, the synchronization process will add, change, or delete the same file from the other location. The locations contain the same up-to-date information after each synchronization.

During the first synchronization the synchronization process adds all the missing files to all locations, older files are overwritten by newer files.

During subsequent synchronizations the program tracks all changes (additions, deletions, changes) in each location, older files are overwritten by newer files or they are deleted if their counterpart has also been deleted.

Attention! You should use bidirectional Sync Mode A<->B with caution. If you delete a file from one location, the synchronization process will delete the same file from the other location. If you synchronize a local folder with a network folder and then connect the other network folder with the same name, the synchronization process will delete files from the local folder that are missing in the network folder.


(Bidirectional synchronization mode without the tracking deletions)

If you add or change a file from one location, the synchronization process will add or change the same file from the other location. Both locations contain the same up-to-date information after each synchronization.

The synchronization process adds all the missing files to all locations during the first and every next synchronization.


(Bidirectional synchronization mode without the tracking deletions, without the tracking additions)

If you change a file from one location, the synchronization process will change the same file from the other location.

The synchronization process does not add files to other locations. The app syncs the existing files only.


(Backup mode)

All new files / subfolders that have been added to the "Folder A", will be copied to the "Folder B".
The files in the "Folder A" will be copied to the "Folder B" (files will be replaced in the "Folder B"), if they have the same name and have different timestamps (changed files in the "Folder A").
All files that have been deleted in the "Folder A", will not be removed from "Folder B".


(Backup mode)

All new files / subfolders that have been added to the "Folder B", will be copied to the "Folder A".
The files in the "Folder B" will be copied to the "Folder A" (files will be replaced in the "Folder A"), if they have the same name and have different timestamps (changed files in the "Folder B").
All files that have been deleted in the "Folder B", will not be removed from "Folder A".


(Mirroring backup mode)

This mode backs-up "Folder A" to "Folder B", creating a mirror "Folder A" in the "Folder B".
All new files / subfolders that have been added to the "Folder A", will be copied to the "Folder B".
All files that have been deleted in the "Folder A", will be removed from the "Folder B".
The files in the "Folder A" will be copied to the "Folder B" (files will be replaced in the "Folder B"), if they have the same name and have different timestamps (changed files in the "Folder A").
All files that have been added to the "Folder B" and do not exist in the "Folder A", will be removed from the "Folder B".
All files and subfolders in the "Folder B" will be equivalent to the files and subfolders in the "Folder A" after each synchronization.


(Mirroring backup mode)

This mode backs-up "Folder B" to "Folder A", creating a mirror "Folder B" in the "Folder A".
All new files / subfolders that have been added to the "Folder B", will be copied to the "Folder A".
All files that have been deleted in the "Folder B", will be removed from the "Folder A".
The files in the "Folder B" will be copied to the "Folder A" (files will be replaced in the "Folder A"), if they have the same name and have different timestamps (changed files in the "Folder B").
All files that have been added to the "Folder A" and do not exist in the "Folder B", will be removed from the "Folder A".
All files and subfolders in the "Folder A" will be equivalent to the files and subfolders in the "Folder B" after each synchronization.


(Restore mode)

The synchronization process restores the files from "Folder A" to "Folder B".
The files in the "Folder A" will be copied to the "Folder B" (files will be replaced in the "Folder B"), if they have the same name and have different timestamps (changed files in the "Folder A").
All new files which were added to "Folder A", will not be copied to "Folder B".
All files which were deleted in "Folder A", will not be deleted from "Folder B".


(Restore mode)

The synchronization process restores the files from "Folder B" to "Folder A".
The files in the "Folder B" will be copied to the "Folder A" (files will be replaced in the "Folder A"), if they have the same name and have different timestamps (changed files in the "Folder B").
All new files which were added to "Folder B", will not be copied to "Folder A".
All files which were deleted in "Folder B", will not be deleted from "Folder A".

 

Comparison modes

Timestamp

The app compares the files by file modification date (Timestamp) only.
The fastest way to compare files.

Timestamp+Size

The app compares the files by file modification date (Timestamp) and file size.

Timestamp+Size+Checksum

The app compares the files by file modification date (Timestamp), file size and data file checksum (sha1).
The synchronization speed may decrease when this mode is selected.

Timestamp+Checksum

The app compares the files by file modification date (Timestamp) and data file checksum.
The synchronization speed may decrease when this mode is selected.

 

Drive Types

The type of file system on the drives to be synchronized defines timestamp information.

Mac OS. The drive supports saving the original timestamp on the Mac when copying.

You should set this mode if folder A and folder B are on drives using Mac OS file system.
After selecting this mode, the "Comparison mode" will be set to the "Timestamp" and the mode "Allowable deviation of File Modification Date [sec.]" will be set to "0" seconds.

FAT32, ExFAT. Timestamp may differ from the original timestamp by several seconds after copying.

You should set this mode if folder A or folder B on the drive with file system FAT32, ExFAT, etc.
After selecting this mode, the "Comparison mode" will be set to the "Timestamp" and the mode "Allowable deviation of File Modification Date [sec.]" will be set to "30" seconds.

Drive doesn’t support the saving original timestamp of Mac when copying. Some NAS types.

You should set this mode if folder A or folder B are on a drive which doesn’t support the saving the original timestamp when copying.
After selecting this mode, the "Comparison mode" will be set to the "Timestamp+Size+Checksum" and the mode "Allowable deviation of File Modification Date [sec.]" will be set to "0" seconds.

The synchronization speed may decrease when this mode is selected.
You can choose this mode for the drive with FAT32, ExFAT also.

The drive doesn’t support copying all file attributes, but supports to copying the timestamp.

You should set "Mac OS. Drive supports the saving original timestamp of Mac when copying." mode and use solution here.

 

Filter settings.

You can setup the Filter by the beginning, ending, exact match, any match the string. For example you can write a script for the filter as:

=begin=String1, or =end=String2, or =exact=String3, or ==String4.

You can use complex filtering conditions as:

(=begin=2009, and =end=.jpg,) or (=begin=2010, and =end=.png,)


Folder Filter.

To exclude folders "folder1", "folder2", "folder3" you should write a script for the "Folder Filter" as:

!=folder1, and !=folder2, and !=folder3

To include folders "folder1", "folder2", "folder3" you should write a script for the "Folder Filter" as:

==folder1, or ==folder2, or ==folder3


File Filter.

To exclude files with extensions ".pages", ".doc", ".pdf" you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

!end=.pages, and !end=.doc, and !end=.pdf

To exclude hidden files you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

!begin=.

To exclude files with extensions ".jpg" and files "desktop.ini" you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

!end=.jpg, and !exact=desktop.ini

To exclude files with extensions ".pages" and name which begin with string "2009" you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

not (=begin=2009, and =end=.pages,)

To include files with extensions ".pages", ".doc", ".pdf" you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

=end=.pages, or =end=.doc, or =end=.pdf

To include files with extensions ".pages" and name which begin with string "2009" you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

=begin=2009, and =end=.pages

To include files which begin with string "2009" and have extension ".jpg" and files which begin with string "2010" and
have extension ". png" you should write a script for the "File Filter" as:

(=begin=2009, and =end=.jpg,) or (=begin=2010, and =end=.png,)

 

Task settings.

 

App settings.

Don't get the package size (.app, .pkg, etc.)

This feature disables calculation of the size of packages, thereby increasing the speed of synchronization. When using this feature the calculated time until the end of synchronization may be in noticeably in error if the synchronized folders contain large packages. If the synchronized folders do not contain packages, this feature has no effect on the progress of the synchronization.

If the application performs the synchronization in the background and you do not care to see the progress of the synchronization, use this feature. This will increase the speed of synchronization.


Mode of reading the file structure.

Mode 1 - reading file structure with help of the Mac OS X SDK.

Mode 2 - reading file structure with help unix command.

We recommend using mode 1 for reading the file structure.


Optimize Database.

The database is used to compare the file structures and storage of information about the last synchronization. The procedure "Optimize Database" reduces the size of the database and increase the speed comparison the file structures. Usage is recommended if you delete synchronization tasks or sync speed decreases.

 

Compare files using QuickLook.

 

Compare files using "Line by Line" comparison.

 

Move deleted files to the "_DelSyncFiles" folder.

Switching on this mode is highly recommended. This done through /Tasks/Main settings. When enabled deleted files or subfolders of Sync-Folders A/B within a Task will not be lost, because they will be deposited automatically in a subfolder "_DelSyncFiles" quasi mirrored, at the "same place" (the subfolders' structure will be copied, too).

"Replacing" mode means the last deleted file will "replace" the preceding deletion-copy with same name.

With "Adding" mode you will gather all deleted versions in the "_DelSyncFiles-folder", which can use a lot of storage.

Hint: Pay attention to the path of a file when searching (in this Mac) with Finder, otherwise you could take over accidently an old version from your _DelSyncFiles-subfolder.

 

Tracking changes Reset.

The reset button initiates erasure of all gathered information about the current task (structure of Sync-Folders A/B, files and their changes). After the reset the structure of Sync-Folders A/B and their files will be read, and pairs of folders/files will be synchronized depending on the settings.

Sometimes installation of a new version of the program requires a reset before the first synchronization. Information on this will be in the description of the update.

Hint: After deletion of files within a task, first synchronize the subfolders A/B with each volume (e.g. stick, server-drive) you use before the tracking changes reset. Otherwise you will "regain" the deleted folders/files that you didn’t want anymore.

 

Allowable deviation of File Modification Date [sec.]

This feature controls operations with files when the files have deviation in the File Modification Date within the specified value.

You should setup it to 2-10 seconds, if you sync folders on the drive with FAT32.

 

Protection during copying.

We recommend to use this feature always. It is an insurance against losing your files. If you disable this feature, then you could lose your files in the following case:

You are using the synchronization mode "A<->B" or "A<+>B". During copying a large file an external drive or folder has been shut down or disconnected. As a result the file was copied not completely or not correctly, and subsequently you synced the folders again.

 

Resolving the file versions conflict.

A sync conflict occurs when the app can not reconcile differences between a file stored in one location and a version of the same file in another location. This usually happens when a file has changed in both locations since its last sync, making it difficult to determine which changes to save.

If you enable the "Resolving the file versions conflict" mode, the app will rename the file with an earlier timestamp to the file with a timestamp prefix (FILENAME-yymmdd-hh-mm-ss) and copy the file with the later timestamp. So you get two versions and can choose the version manually after sync or use the two file versions.

If you disable the "Resolving the file versions conflict" mode, the app will copy the file with the later timestamp. So you get the file version with the later timestamp in two locations.

 

Use shell command to copy.

For feature "Use shell command to copy" you can use complex script as:

if test -e filePathTo;

then mkdir -p folderPathTo/_DelSyncFiles/folderSubPath;

cp -a filePathTo folderPathTo/_DelSyncFiles/fileSubPath; fi;

mkdir -p folderPathTo/folderSubPath;

if cp -a filePathFrom filePathTo; then echo "0"; fi;


ThefilePathFrom, filePathTo, folderPathFrom, folderPathTo, folderSubPath, fileSubPath  are variables here.


if test -e filePathTo; //check out that the old version of the file exist

then mkdir -p folderPathTo/_DelSyncFiles/folderSubPath; //creates a subfolder for the old version of the file

cp -a filePathTo folderPathTo/_DelSyncFiles/fileSubPath; fi;//copies the old version of the file in the "_DelSyncFiles" subfolder.

mkdir -p folderPathTo/folderSubPath;//creates a target folder before copying file

if cp -a filePathFrom filePathTo; then echo "0"; fi;//copies the new version of the file to the target folder and returns "0" if the copy was successful.


Please, use this feature very carefully for the modes: "A<->B", "A<+>B".

It is strongly recommend scripts be check out on test data before use on real data. "0" is returned to the app when the operation was successful, at which the app writes to the DataBase that the file has been copied successfully. If the script didn't copy the file, but the script returned "0" to the app, then for mode "A<->B", "A<+>B" you can lose files. If the script doesn't return "0" to the app, then you get a red icon and the app will write to the DataBase that the file can't be copied. Please don't use this feature if you don't understand how to write or edit the script.

Solutions using the "Use shell command to copy" mode you can find here.

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