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Move big files lightning fast in Windows 8 with TeraCopy

Virtualization expert Rick Vanover says TeraCopy is an easy and great way to easily move big files. Get details about TeraCopy in his review.

 

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In my data center practice, I'm occasionally stuck moving very large files. There was a time when it was rare that I'd see a file larger than a CD or DVD's capacity, but nowadays, I often see multi-terabyte files. There are a couple of reasons why this is the case.

In my professional virtualization practice, I advocate for people to transition to disk-based backups. The other part of this is my emerging practice of working with Hyper-V virtual machines. For me, I'm always moving things around in Hyper-V, and files like a VHD or VHDX disk are actually quite large--much like that of the disk-based backup world.

Simply using Windows Explorer, PowerShell, Robocopy, or the now quite dated RichCopy are good, but myself and others in the virtualization community have come to fancy TeraCopy. It's free for non-commercial use, so it's very easy to try. The paid version, TeraCopy Pro, comes with additional features.

How to use TeraCopy

TeraCopy installs very easily and can optionally be added to the right-click context of Windows systems, which is how I recommend using it. After this is complete, a TeraCopy job can be done as shown in Figure A. (TeraCopy supports Windows 8 x64. The example in this article is Windows Server 2012 R2. Click the images to enlarge them.)

Figure A

 

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TeraCopy provides you with the option to move the files vs. copying them. Once the files are added and the target path is selected, the jobs are underway (Figure B).

Figure B

 

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One of the best aspects of TeraCopy is the optional built-in hash checking (Source and Target CRC in the interface) that is done with the files that are moved or copied. It's great that the Target is checked back against the source afterwards in the case of a copy, because you can check to make sure they match. Don't underestimate the file of hash or CRC check of a file, especially very large files. If you do the verify step on TeraCopy, be prepared for it to take a while.

In today's world of storage, there are a lot of different products out there--everything from deduplication (typical for disk-based backups) to converged systems to build-your-own NAS systems--and there can be varied results. Figure C shows the hashing being matched up after the copy.

Figure C

 

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One of the best aids to a busy (or lazy) administrator is possibly the ability to pause a job. Besides the lazy aspect, this may be very beneficial if you have limited bandwidth, and the task can't run during the business day. That leads me to my wish list of a bandwidth limiter on the I/O, but TeraCopy's objective is to move files fast.

Join the discussion

Have you tried TeraCopy or another tool? What kind of catch points have you had with moving or copying very large files? Share your recommendations and experiences in the discussion.

 

About

Rick Vanover is a software strategy specialist for Veeam Software, based in Columbus, Ohio. Rick has years of IT experience and focuses on virtualization, Windows-based server administration, and system hardware.

11 comments
davidmastro
davidmastro

One thing I really liked about RichCopy was you can specify via command line what to copy, where, how, leave a running log file of the copy results, and create a scheduled task for it... does TeraCopy support CLI? Or could you recommend another free app like RichCopy that incorporates CRC? It's too bad the design of RichCopy was never finished, basic copy features work fine, but a few more revisions and features like CRC would have made it a really great product.

kaspencer
kaspencer

I have complained for years about how poor all versions of Windows have been when copying large files. We shouldn't need a utility like TeraCopy. The built-in command should simply take advantage of all the resources of the machine. 

For example, one of my workstations has 32Gbyte of RAM and four cores. Windows knows that. Yet it does not take advantage of it when moving or copying files. But it should. So, Microsoft, when you issue a new improved Windows version, always make sure that it is improved and not the same as before with a few deckchairs moved around.


Kenneth Spencer

laman
laman

Is it really faster than others? I can't see any comparison in the article.

fidelp
fidelp

I've been using ViseVersa for years not. It has tons of features and the trial is full feature. http://www.tgrmn.com

techrepublic
techrepublic

I've been using SFV Checker, which creates an SFV checksum file which you can double-click at the other end to make sure nothing got corrupted. It doesn't handle very large files; it reports their length as -1 bytes. I'm definitely going to take a look at Teracopy.

raymond.doctor
raymond.doctor

I have been using Teracopy 4 years (2 years+) and it has never let me down. Great util and works just as well in Vista and Win7


gaston_pdu
gaston_pdu

Teracopy is great, and speed is one of it less impressive advantages. It is best in older versions like Xp or 7. One of the greatest advantages is that the copy does not stop if it finds a problem with a file. It just keeps going with the others and then lets you know through the report. 


A spanish review here: http://wp.me/pjSlJ-T

alexisgarcia72
alexisgarcia72

I use teracopy since several years now. There is lot of advantages, not only speed.

Gisabun
Gisabun

@techrepublic Problem with SFV Checker is that it lacks many features [if I remember right]. No multi-threading for starters.

Tolga BALCI
Tolga BALCI

@alexisgarcia72  Correct. I have moved various file types with TeraCopy and it almost never failed. I believe speed comes second; the first is reliability.