I’ve been backing up my MP3 files for a while. I keep a folder on my laptop with all my music. I import that folder to my iTunes and keep that synced with my iPod. A while back I bought a nice USB external drive so that I could keep an extra backup of all my mp3s. This allows me to share music with friends more easily and if something happens to my laptop, I’m not going to lose all those mp3 I’ve collected.
You would think that there would be something built right into Windows that allowed you to sync two folders, one on your hard drive and one on an external drive. Why not just drag the folder from your laptop to the drive? Well, when I do that, it copies everything, even stuff that has been copied before. If you have several gigabytes of music, this can take forever. It would be nice if Windows only made copies of the new stuff since the last backup. It would be even better if it worked both ways, if it also copied new files on the external hard drive to the laptop. But alas it doesn’t work that way. At least I don’t know a way do to it with just Windows XP.
I knew there must be some utility out there that would do this, but I waited until today to go looking. So today I went over to cnet and checked the download for a free application that could synchronize folders. I found GoodSync and it did exactly what I wanted. It analyzed the folder on my laptop and the folder on my external hard drive and copied files both ways that were missing. It seems great, but I just noticed that it’s only a free trial. After 30 days, I’ll need to pay $29.95 to keep it.
I’ve only used it once, but it seems to work well, and it was easy for me to figure out. If I notice any problems, I’ll come back here and update this.