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One thing I’ve never taken lightly is making sure all of my most important data is backed up. Utilities like SyncBack have served me well over the years, and I’ve even gone as far as to buy a copy of the software for my primary PC. For my other computers I switch on and off between other tools, and one of the more recent ones is FreeFileSync.

What makes FreeFileSync unique? It is focused on simplicity. It wants to make sure that you know what is getting backed up, and feel comfortable running the app without having to read a manual first. The interface is extremely clean and uses graphics that clearly represent the actions that will be taken. You’ll feel confident that you know what will happen when you hit the “synchronize” button.

Here’s a rundown on the features offered:

  • Compare files (bytewise or by date) and synchronize them
  • Network support
  • Built-in support for very long filenames (more than MAX_PATH = 260 characters)
  • Synchronization database for conflict detection
  • Full support for Windows/Linux Symbolic Links and Windows Junction Points
  • Lean & easily accessible UI: Highly optimized for speed and huge sets of data
  • Algorithms coded in C++
  • Support for filesizes larger than 4 GB
  • Option to move files to Recycle Bin instead of deleting/overwriting them
  • Delete before copy: Avoid disc space shortages for large sync-jobs
  • Filter functionality to include/exclude files from synchronization (without requiring a re-compare!)
  • Include/exclude specific files from synchronization temporarily
  • Create sync jobs via GUI to synchronize automatically (can be scheduled or executed via double-click)
  • Portable version available.
  • Native 64-Bit version
  • Copy locked files using Windows Volume Shadow Copy Service
  • Create regular backups with macros %time%, %date% within directory names
  • Copy file and folder create/access/modification times when synchronizing

One of the things I know some people worry about is accidentally having files removed due to how the synchronization is set up. Not to worry. You might have noticed in the list above that one of the options is to send any file that is supposed to be deleted (or overwritten) straight to the Recycle Bin so that they can always be recovered. FreeFileSync is worry-free synchronization at its finest.

FreeFileSync Homepage (Windows/Linux; Freeware)