One wise tool for a wise file copy and backup

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Why do you need WiseCopy?

WiseCopy is a program of extreme simplicity that I originally developed for my own personal use.

I have often to work at home, and I have to copy my work on a laptop, with, more than often, the need to make adjustments to the code at the client's. As anyone working on more than one computer well knows, the usual old problem arises: how to ensure that the files I edit when away are the same as those at house? And once back at home, how do I know that I transferred all the changes made to my main computer? Obviously, you can copy an entire folder. But what if you worked on some files on one PC, and on other files of the same folder on a different computer?

Copying of a whole directory tree takes time, sometimes a lot. And anyway, it surely overwrites the destination folders. In addition, you probably happened to start a copy that you know will require tens of minutes, so you went to do something else, and came back in half an hour, only to discover that, almost immediately, the copy stopped to ask if that read-only file should be overwritten or not ... obnoxious ...

I have therefore written WiseCopy, and, for years, I have been using it daily, and several times a day, for that, modifying and perfecting it over time.

What WiseCopy can do

WiseCopy just copies files and folders, but it does it in a wise and efficient way

WiseCopy in its basic functionality is of elementary use, and it just copies what you need to copy, and nothing more; what has been copied previously and was never changed is not copied again; therefore, copying is much faster: instead of tens of minutes, it will require tens of seconds, or less. What is newer on the destination folder is not overwritten, unless you ask for that. You will always have the up to date version on any file. You will not spoil your work any more, even if you have worked on two different PCs (or even more). You no longer need to try hard to remember what you edited and where. You no longer will need to waste precious time to compare file sizes and dates of which you are not sure.

If you do not have the time to copy all your files, just start WiseCopy and let it work in the background. When you need to stop, maybe because you have to leave, stop WiseCopy, you can resume it at a later time. WiseCopy picks up where you left off, it does not start over.

WiseCopy Main screen

By executing the copy in one direction and then to the other one, you will have two identical copies of the same folders, where each individual file is updated to the latest version. WiseCopy can automatically perform this line up operation.

You can tell WiseCopy to limit the copy to files of a certain type or a list of types (*.txt, *.jpg, *.jpeg, for instance), or to exclude from the copy some other file types (eg, *.bak, or movies). Also, you can program in special procedures, defined using WiseCopy itself, a list of folders to copy, each with its own specifics.

I use WiseCopy every day for the following activities:

  • Line up and synchronization of files between a main PC and a laptop
  • Line up and synchronization as above the code developed for myself and for my clients
  • Line up and synchronization of the mail between a main PC and a laptop: I used to do that with Eudora, now with Thunderbird. I read and write email on site, then, before going out I run WiseCopy on the folders of Thunderbird: during my trip I read and write my email as usual. Then I synchronize again on return, and I am ready to use my email at home again without missing one byte (what you're saying? Do you use Outlook? No Eudora? No Thunderbird? Well, I'm sorry for you, but of course, everyone is free to hurt himself the way he or she likes better ...)
  • Backup of entire folders or entire disks: by copying only what is new, the full backup of a disk is reduced from several hours to a few minutes, once the first backup has run

The data is copied in clear, uncompressed format. That way, recovery is immediate, simply locate the file or files to be recovered, and copy them. If you can make a copy and paste, you know how to use the restore from a WiseCopy backup.

What WiseCopy can not do

WiseCopy can't be used backup SQL databases (but, of course, it can copy Microsoft Access files). It can copy, of course, detached mdf files, but it will report an error if you try to copy a file attached to a started database, because the operating system itself prevents the copy no matter what. To backup SQL, I developed a special utility, AFMsqlBackup.

WiseCopy is a tool that simplifies and automates the copying of files and folders, but does not copy the system registry.

It is therefore not suited to back up your full operating system; that is, you can not recover your computer after a serious crash due to viruses or hardware or software malfunctions, for this you must wisely manage recovery points of your system by simple usage of WiseCopy.

However, in the unlikely case of these unfortunate occurrences, even in the unlikely event you have to reformat and reinstall your system from scratch, as you will have kept a fully updated backup (because to keep an updated backup is a very easy and unexpensive task, with WiseCopy) you will be able to recover all your valuable data. Being easy to use, and fast running, your backup will not be performed daily, but several times a day. That will allow you, at least, to land on your feet.