Difficult copying lots of folders from one location to another

Discussion in 'macOS Sierra (10.12)' started by kat.hayes, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. kat.hayes macrumors 6502a

    Oct 10, 2011
    I'm copying lots of folders from a MBP to an external drive with lots of folders. When I select lots of folders on the MBP and drag them to the external it seems to want to place the folders inside of other folders. Sometimes, depending on how I let go it will place the folders inside of other folders or it will place them outside the folders. How do you copy them so they are not put in the other folders?
  2. dianeoforegon macrumors 6502a


    Apr 26, 2011
  3. Taz Mangus macrumors 68040

    Taz Mangus

    Mar 10, 2011
    Select the folders to copy, press Cmd-C. On the destination drive select the folder or drive, press Cmd-V.
  4. netnewswireuser macrumors newbie

    Jan 2, 2017
    Use rsync, you will save tons of time and avoid tons of problems.
  5. Lunder89 macrumors 6502


    Oct 16, 2014
    Just make sure when drag the files over, to NOT hover your mousepointer over any of the other folders. Point somewhere empty.
  6. DanielGMac macrumors newbie


    Jan 9, 2011

    Open a terminal.

    If you want to see what's going on during the copy. This will copy everything from "folder" in your home directory recursively to an external, mounted, drive called extdrive

    rsync -arv /Users/me/folder /Volumes/extdrive

    Personally, I would start a log file and wait until the cursor returned then look at the log file to see how it worked or "tail -f" the log file while it was copying so if something happened you still have the information it put out:

    rsync -arv /Users/me/folder /Volumes/extdrive > /Users/me/synclogfile.txt &

    Advantage of using rsync is if you have to update it later it will only copy the new files and those that have changed. If you just use copy/xcopy or drag and drop it will have to copy every file again.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 11, 2017 ---
    Ohhh, if you want graphical and something that is wonderful should you want to swap out your hard drive to another one (larger or ssd, etc) then:

  7. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009

    TURN OFF "Spring loaded folders". This can be disconcerting when folders pop open when unexpected.

    If you're still trying to move folders, download "Pathfinder". It's free to download and use for 30 days.
    When you open Pathfinder, you can select one (or more) folders, then go to the "Commands" menu and use either "copy to..." or "move to...". Much more precise.

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