How to Sync Files between PC and USB Thumb Drive?

Shankar Ganesh 02-02-2008

Got a USB Pen Drive? They’re great for backups. Do you carry files across in USB drives? It might sometimes be exhausting to copy files and folders to and from your hard drive and USB Stick. There’s an easy way to sync files between your hard disk and USB Flash Drive. Here’s how:

    • 1. Download


    • and install it.

2. Run SyncToy from the Start Menu

3. You’ll now have to create a Folder Pair

4. Choose a Left Folder (this is a folder on your PC’s hard disk) and a Right Folder (this points to your removable USB Pen Drive)

Sync files and folders from PC to USB Drive

5. Choose a Synchronization Method. This could be anything from:

  • Synchronize: Two Way Synchronization (left to right as well as right to left).
  • Echo: Transfer happens Left to Right. Renames and Deletes are also synced from left to right.
  • Contribute: Left to Right Syncing. Renames are done on right with left as the source. No Deletions occur.
Sync and Copy files from PC Hard Drive to USB Pen Drive

6. In the window that appears, click on Run to start the Syncing Process. In case you want to be able to preview the changes that’ll be done, use the ‘Preview’ option to have a look at the upcoming actions that’ll be taken.


So that’s how you sync files between your PC’s hard drive and USB Pen Drive. Should come really handy, I hope.

Related topics: Data Backup, USB, USB Drive.

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  1. Playappspc
    December 13, 2016 at 5:47 pm

    A great post.Was looking for it.I got this page from google.Good for your site.!
    good luck!

  2. Razo
    January 14, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    Same here...I need to find a software that I can install on the flash drive not in the computer. Any suggestions?

  3. arul
    December 21, 2009 at 5:38 pm

    Please let me know how to install synctoy on my flash drive.

    I've installed synctoy on my computer and backup to my flash drive, but I can't use it at work (since I can't install a program there). I would like to install it on my flash drive, but haven't been able to.


  4. Scoutmagazine
    November 27, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    I have been useing AllwaySync'n'Go was looking for somting else to try. I'm not into pying $29 for that program when I can only use it on one drive nd 1 PC at a time.

  5. Robin
    September 25, 2009 at 8:47 am

    Does anyone know how to sync/backup a single file as opposed to a full folder? I am doing it using FEBE firefox extension but a standalone utility would be appreciated!

  6. Tom Markham
    August 10, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    I solved half of my dilemma: Firefox (Mozilla) has an experimental product, "Weave" that does a wonderful job of syncing nearly all of the Firefox files over the web. Just load it into two separate computers - the process is very easy and user-friendly. Now I still need help locating the files in Thunderbird so I can sync them.

  7. Tom Markham
    August 10, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    Thank you all for making clear how to use SyncToy. What I would like to sync, however, I cannot find:
    1- the ini files for Thunderbird and Firefox
    so that I can sync the toolbars. Can anyone help me find these?
    Again - thank you for all the mentoring

  8. Selinap
    August 2, 2009 at 11:48 pm

    I use the open source Unison.

  9. lenny
    May 29, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    if you're running Linux I would recommend taking a look at GNU usbsync for dumb synchronizations such as this. it's available at:

    it's simple but handles synchronizations pretty well.

    what makes it really nice is that you've a .usbsync file in the top level directory of your thumbdrive which specifies what is to be synchronized on what machine.

    really nice if your're working on more than one computer and have you're data with you to be easily synchronized at various places. i use it daily.

  10. Cody
    July 31, 2008 at 2:56 am

    Finally! I love the echo feature!
    I was using the Microsoft Briefcase, but when I deleted something out of the briefcase (with the intentions of it still being on my PC and ready to be re-copied into the briefcase at next sync-up) it would delete it off my computer when I went to sync my files!

    I lost some important company files, thank God a co-worker also had these files or it would've cost the company big bucks!

  11. Mr.Reason
    June 13, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    Nice post was just what i was looking for.

    I us it to sync my main copy of firefox (I run the portable version from my computer) with a copy on my flash drive it works great.

  12. andrea
    February 3, 2008 at 5:31 am

    great software, great blogger

  13. Dave
    February 2, 2008 at 11:53 pm

    I use to synchronize and backup my USB Drive. It has triggers to automatically run when your drive is inserted, which I find to be very useful!

    • Aibek
      February 3, 2008 at 5:13 pm

      "It has triggers to automatically run when your drive is inserted".

      Hmmm... I don't recall that feature. Do I need to change anything in settings for that?

      • Dave
        February 4, 2008 at 2:55 pm

        Open Profile, go to "When" tab, then "Insert". It lets you specify by drive letter, label, or serial number.

        Aibek - did you receive my email?

        Thanks, - Dave

        • Aibek
          February 4, 2008 at 7:03 pm

          Thanks for clarifying it.

          P.S. I have just replied to you email so if you're reading this it's already in your mailbox.

        • shane
          February 11, 2008 at 3:53 pm

          I also couldn't figure out how to do the sync automatically. I didn't ever see a "when" tab or anything as described above. Any suggestions?

        • Sano
          December 28, 2008 at 2:09 am

          To get SyncToy to autosync when a thumbdrive is plugged in I:
          1)Setup desired Folder Pairs in SyncToy
          2)Use TweakUI from Microsoft and added SyncToy as an autorun handler as seen here
          3)Changed the autoplay action for each content type on my thumbdrive
          a]Right click on thumbdrive --> Properties
          b]Select "Autoplay" tab
          c]change "Select Action to perform" -> Sync with SyncToy

          Hope this helps!

        • james
          February 13, 2009 at 5:30 am

 also starts automatically when you connect the thumb drive and i've never had any problems with it. This is good software by i'm not convinced to change.

        • As Him
          February 22, 2009 at 4:32 am

          I downloaded TweakUI but unable to add SyncToy to My USB pendrive's autorun property list. Will you show me the method?

        • Spanner
          March 8, 2009 at 8:35 pm

          open tweek ui
          go to my computer --> autorun--> handlers
          click create
          find where Synctoy is located (program files as default)
          double click the program launcher logo
          select all the media radio buttons on the list below.
          click ok
          click apply.

          Now plug in your pen drive.
          in my computer right click the drive and select properties.
          click the autoplay tab
          slect music from the drop down menu.
          click the radio button "select action to perform"
          now select the sync with SynToy logo
          Repeat for the other options given by the drop down menu
          click apply then ok.
          remove and reinsert your drive to see if it has worked

        • Kunal Verma
          February 5, 2010 at 1:13 am

          I am looking to purchase a portable Hard disk for backup purpooses How would I be able to automatically backup files as soon as the computer recognises a hard disk USB is plugged in