I'm looking for a way to copy a folder structure from one place to another, selecting and deselecting individual files and folders for copying, including selecting parts of the content of previously deselected folders.

As an example, for the following hierarchy, I'd like to be able to select four files:

☑ File 1
☐ File 2
☑ Folder 1
  ☑ File 1.1
  ☑ File 1.2
☒ Folder 2
  ☐ File 2.1
  ☑ File 2.2
☐ Folder 3
  ☐ File 3.1
  ☐ File 3.2

and have the destination contain this hierarchy after copying:

- File 1
- Folder 1
  - File 1.1
  - File 1.2
- Folder 2
  - File 2.2

Tools like Windows Explorer, command-line copying and TeraCopy allow only copying entire hierarchies or deselecting individual files. How can I quickly copy the parts of the hierarchy I want while maintaining an overview?

  • 1
    I'd use TotalCommander which is a real powerhouse for these tasks Aug 10, 2016 at 14:30
  • What about freefilesync. You would misuse a synchronisation program for a copy process, but why not. It allows deselecting files and entire folders, is sort of platform independent, and free. Aug 10, 2016 at 14:56
  • TotalCommander doesn't seem to have any way of marking files and folders for copy in a tree view. Aug 10, 2016 at 15:31
  • mikuszefski: FreeFileSync actually seems to be quite close to what I want. You have to select and deselect files in a list view, but can browse to folders using a tree view. Aug 10, 2016 at 15:32

2 Answers 2


TotalCommander can do this as Mick said.

When you have two panes open, select Commands -> Synchronise Directories option. Commands -> Synchronise Directories

It doesn't display strictly like a tree (no collapsing nodes), but it allows one to select individual items. Right clicking a folder allows bulk (de)selection.

Synchronise Directories

Now select Compare for the directories content to be scanned, ready for (de)selection.

Note that in the latter screenshot I have only chosen to Show the Green Arrow Meaning only items on the left and not the right are displayed.

FreeFileSync is almost there, but it's not ideal for this task (at least for me) for two reasons as it removes files/folder from the view immediately when you uncheck them for synchronisation.

  • It's been a while, but I'll have a look next time I need this. Thanks! Jul 11, 2018 at 13:03

Windows Explorer can do this (Windows 7, 8.x, 10). All you have to do is enable check boxes.

  1. From the Start button, type "File Explorer Options"
  2. Select the View tab
  3. Check Use check boxes to select items
  4. Click OK
  • 1
    This only seems to allow me to select files and folders on one level of the hierarchy, just the same as selecting multiple files while pressing Control. Aug 11, 2016 at 7:13

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