By Ivy / Last update April 18, 2022

SyncToy Overview

SyncToy is a free Microsoft application that synchronizes files and folders between locations. You could share files, like photos, email, documents, music, and other files with other computers, make backup copies of these files or folders. If you have hundreds or thousands of files to manage, SyncToy could help you a lot.

How to use SyncToy step by step?

SyncToy Version 2.1 was the last version available when its official download was discontinued in January 2021. You can download it from this page. In this section, I will show you how to use SyncToy to sync files/folders. Detailed steps are listed below:

  1. Launch SyncToy on your computer. Click Create New Folder Pair button.

SyncToy Create New Folder Pair

  1. Choose the files or folders you want to sync in Left Folder. Select a folder to save these files in Right Folder, and then click Next>.

Choose Folder to Sync

  1. Tick Synchronize (or other options: Echo or Contribute), and press Next> button.

Synchronize

Synchronize takes the two folders and makes sure they have exactly the same files. To do this, SyncToy may copy files in either direction and may delete or rename files in either folder. In the case that a file has been updated in both the left and right folders, the version with the later modification date is considered the winner. The other version will be overwritten (but can be recovered via the Recycle Bin if one's settings specify that all deletions go to the Recycle Bin).
Echo looks for changes (file modifications, new files, renames, deletes) in the left folder and makes the right folder match the left folder in every way.
Contribute is like an Echo, but it does not delete any files.

  1. Name your folder pair. Then click Finish, then you could preview the details about this synchronization. Now, press Run to sync files or folders.

Look for some portable version of SyncToy

Some users are interested in: is there any portable version of SyncToy? Which means that SyncToy could be on the backup drive (USB hard drive or hard disk, etc.) and could be proceeded directly from that drive. Until now, SyncToy hasn’t released a portable version yet. So, how to get a SyncToy Portable tool to sync files or folders?

SyncToy Portable Alternative for all Windows PCs

Microsoft no longer supports this software -SyncToy and it’s no longer available to download from Microsoft. Fortunately for you, there are some similar products to help you to manage files or folders in bulk. There is a software named AOMEI Backupper, as the best SyncToy portable alternative, which is a powerful file synchronization and management tool for Windows Vista, XP, 7, 8, 8.1, 10,11.

It provides you with four sync methds: Basic Sync, Real-time Sync, Mirror Sync and Two-way Sync. It’s applied to many storage devices, like USB drive, SD card, SSD, external hard drive, Network Share or NAS, etc. it’s easy and flexible to use with your different usage. Most important, you could use it in portable devices, like CD/DVD, USB flash drive, etc.

You can use it to copy AOMEI Backupper to a removable device so that directly run it on target computers without installing, which is convenient for IT maintenance and support engineers.

How to create portable version with AOMEI Backupper and sync files

Now, we will show you more details about the steps to create a portable version with SyncToy alternative - AOMEI Backupper and use it to sync files or folders between computers in most popular Windows operating system, like Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10,11. Just refer to this guide:

  • Download SyncToy portable software – AOMEI Backupper.

Download Technician Trial Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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  • Create  portable version with AOMEI Backupper. 

  • Create a network share folder in one computer.

  • Two computers installed Windows Vista/XP/7/8/10/11.

  1. Connect the removable device with portable AOMEI Backupper to the computer that you want to sync files. Find Backupper.exe in the installation directory and double click it to run AOMEI Backupper from the removable device. Then go to Sync -> Basic Sync.

Basic Sync

  1. Input Task Name to distinguish from other tasks. And then click + Add Folder to browse and add the files or folders that you want to sync in Windows 7/8/10/11.

Add Folder

  1. Choose the inverted triangle icon -> Select a network location -> Add Network Location -> input the Network Path to choose the network share folder as destination.

Select Network Location

Add Network Share Location

  1. Click Start Sync>> to sync files or folders between computers with the help of SyncToy portable alternatiive.

Start Sync

Tips:

  • Sync Options: you are allowed to comment or enable email notification;

  • Schedule: it will create the sync task daily/weekly/monthly after you set up.

Wait for a moment, your files or folders will be synchronized from one computer to another one. And this portable media, you could carry it whenever and wherever, use it no matter what Windows operating system you installed. Besides, the files and folders stored in OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, and other clouds, could be sync or backup to external hard drive, or USB drive, SSD, and so on.

Final Words

While SyncToy is Microsoft's free sync tool for syncing files and folders in Windows, it doesn't have a portable version and no longer offers an official download channel. So, I recommend you to use the best portable sync software - AOMEI Backupper.

Apart from these functions, AOMEI Backupper offers a function named USB plug in to backup data on the USB to local drive or backup local data to USB drive when SyncToy alternative – AOMEI Backupper detects that the source or destination USB of the task is plugged in. Moreover, you could use command line to clone/backup files or folders, partition, Windows operating system, etc.