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Inventory and File Copy Files


I need to identify certain files by extension on workstations connected to the network. After I identify those files, I want to copy them to a central share. I am trying to find an easy way to do this, and perhaps find affordable software that will help me do this more easily. Currently, I am thinking about using a file search utility to inventory each machine through a UNC path and the provide the results to a CSV file. I can import those results into a database, and then query the extensions I am looking for. Then, export the results of a modified query to create the files I want to copy to a specified location. I can do this, but I hope there is an easier and more affordable way through a file inventory and copy utility.

If you have done something like this before then I ask for your feedback specifically. What tool did you use and how did you use it? Did you do what I did or was there a better way?

Windows NetworkingNetwork ManagementStorage Software

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8/22/2022 - Mon
Bill Bach

I wrote a simple application, called CountExt, back in the days of prepping for Y2K conversion issues.  It can scan an entire hard disk and count up a list of files by extension to provide a summary of what is on the box (i,.e. how many XLS spreadsheets, etc.).  Since it runs through every file anyway, it ALSO has a verbose option which outputs ALL files to a CSV file, suitable for importing into a database.  The first option, /F, outputs file, directory, and extension only, but /F /O will also add date, time and size columns, if you need them.

You can access a free 30-day trial of this tool by googling "Countext Counts files (by extension) on a computer". This would allow you to run it on every computer in your organization to collect this data.  I just updated it today, as I noticed that it didn't handle hidden folders properly.  Note, though, that the extension counter (/E switch) is limited at 20 characters of length -- so anything longer will get truncated.  If this is a problem, let me know and I can update this, too, but it sounds like you only need the file list generator.
Aaron Tomosky

I do something like this but mostly on Linux/osx boxes  it involves rsync and some scripts called rsbackup.
You would need to run it ideally on FreeBSD to have zfs snapshots but any Linux should work.
If you install ssh/ rsync on your windows boxes it would work but that may be too clunky for you.

Thanks. I can manually do this already . I also work in a Windows environment. Usually, I use CoolFind to search for files and then export the results to CSV. The CSV gets imported into an SQL database. I run a query that returns the results into a formatted XXCOPY command to copy files from point A to point B. it is very tedious and time consuming.  I was hoping for something more automatic or GUI driven if possible.
I started with Experts Exchange in 2004 and it's been a mainstay of my professional computing life since. It helped me launch a career as a programmer / Oracle data analyst
William Peck
Bill Bach

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Hi Billbach,

It sounds like I found an Engineer! Thanks for the help. For a specific example, I want to go through the Admin share on each workstation to search the primary drive for .OST files. when those files are found, I want them copied to a network share. The files should be segregated by user so that I know which user they came from.

It looks like your example will do what I want to do. Thank you for your help. I appreciate it.


This answer helps me the most.