Backing up images from many different folders

I have a hard drive that has many hundreds of folders scattered all over it that contain hundreds of images each.  The folders are labeled with the clients names and the images merely have the numbers assigned by the digital camera - hence many of the images have the same filename.  

I need to keep the images in their respective folders and so just doing a search for *.jpg will not work as all that gives me is the individual files.

I need a way to search for all folders that contain images so that I can then cut and paste just those folders over to a new hard drive.

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Jaroslav MrazCTOCommented:
Hi whot os do you use? If you using windows 7 than you just need to gou to backup and restore in control panel and there you can just klick to backup images

its easyest solution for you or you can use free cobianbackup

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EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
>> - hence many of the images have the same filename.

That's your problem. You will need to rename the individual JPGs to include the folder name. You may even need to rename many sub folders to include the name of the root directory.

Flash renamer from
will do all the above. You should everything renamed during the trial period.
I've been using it for years ... it's such a great program, you will probable wind up buying a license.

To remame sub-folders based on the name of the parent folder make sure that "Folders" is the only thing checked in the top left corner.
Then click on the round "Advanced" Button
Click on the format tab and enter <Parent> <Name>
The preview your results before you "rename" (There is an undo function)

To remame files based on the name of the enclosing folder make sure that "Files" is the only thing checked in the top left corner.
Then click on the round "Advanced" Button
Click on the format tab and enter <Parent> <Name>
The preview your results before you "rename" (There is an undo function)

Good luck
hadhazi1Author Commented:
Hi guys

I tried the backup restore (I am using windows 7) but the problem is that the pictures are actually all on a portable hard drive.  I copied a lot of the data from one of my computers that had a failing hard drive

Now I need to go into that drive and identify which folders contain the images.....there are thousands of folders and hundreds of them contain images.

I love the renaming utility you described above, but I think I would have to know which folders to rename first, right?

Regarding the Win 7 backup, I tried it but it seems to only want to backup something that is on my computer and not on an external drive....

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EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
TYPO: You should everything renamed during the trial period.
Should be: You should get everything renamed during the first hour of the trial period!

Once you have every JPG uniquely named, based on the client name, Folder name, date taken (or any info from the exif tags) searching and copying files will be easy
EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
>> but I think I would have to know which folders to rename first, right?

Right! You have no real chouce but to rename every folder(perhaps) and file

Flash rename is so powerful you should be able to rename 500 folders with 50,000 files in a few hours.
If the folders already have client names you could rename 50,000 files in 30-40 minutes.
EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
Don't forget that when you do a *.jpg search you can sort by the folder location and then copy or move a range of files

Directory Opus from allows advanced searches with multiple criteria ... eg

All *.jpg or *.jpeg
With Paul in the name
Taken in 2010

Give the trial a go .... quicker than renaming
hadhazi1Author Commented:
Hi Eirman

How can I g about sorting by the file location?

When I do a search for *.jpg it returns a list with the file name, size of image and the date taken.  However, these columns are not even sortable as there are no column heads to click to sort by.

I tried looking for somewhere where I could "Add" additional columns such as the File Location, but I did not see anywhere to do that...

hadhazi1Author Commented:
ok, so I just found a way to sort by the file location, however, it will pull up many files at the same location.  Is there a ways to remove the duplicate file locations so that I can cut just the containing folders?

EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
>> Is there a ways to remove the duplicate file locations so that I can cut just the containing folders?

If you are searching for *.jpg you will get the same file location many times (if you didn't, something would be wrong)


Just select the whole range by clicking on the first file and hold down the shift key when you press the last file. Then copy and paste.
hadhazi1Author Commented:

Yes, I understand how to do that, but the problem with doing it that way is that

1.  If I have 1,000 or more folders (Probably) then I would have to copy each range and then create a folder that describes them and paste them into the folder.  This is OK for some, but not for that many.... I was hoping to find a way for it to list the folders so that i could merely copy those...

Any idea on how to do that?
EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
Did you try sorting by creation date?

Sorry, i've no more ideas .... I really do think that you need to rename your files.

You are trying to do too much where too little specific information is available.

Best of luck from Ireland
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
You have a bunch of options: third party Acdsee Pro 4, start tagging your files and organizing them.
Another way is to select the root folder of each client then search for *.jpg select all of the images select properties then details , tag and apply tags as required
Now you can search via tag as I will sow you on this video
EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
Tagging would be much more time consuming than renaming with flash renamer
yo_beeDirector of Information TechnologyCommented:
Have you looked at robocopy. ?

This is included with vista, W7,  & 2008 as well as a download from Microsoft.

To run this you can use these switches.

Robocopy "source" "dest" /E /XO /IF *.jpg *.jpeg /W:1 /R:1  /log:"path".txt /NP /TEE

E = recursive
XO = exclude older files is dest folder is newer than source
IF = include file that match (wild cards work)
W = warning :n number of seconds to wait for a retry
R = retried :n number of retries
Log: log file
NP = do not show progress
TEE = show files while logging.

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