RSync under Windows

October 2016

The software application RSync is used for synchronization and for back-up of files and directories. This application is a standard utility in Linux / Unix based systems but it is absent in Windows. Implementations of RSync on Windows can be done through native implementations but it is best to use implementations of cwRsync and DeltaCopy rsync. These implementations have limitations and alternatively the use of the Python program is fine, but this program has a few command line options of RSync. Installation of cwRync enables users to have a portable version of the application.

RSync is a powerful directories synchronization and backup.
All Linux / Unix systems have it as standard, but not Windows.

To install RSync on Windows, you need to install Cygwin:

cwRync for Windows:
DeltaCopy for Windows:

cwRsync and DeltaCopy rsync are compatible with Linux / Unix.

Older versions of RSync on Windows may be unreliable.

RSync Portable Version

If you need to put RSync command line on a USB flash drive to synchronize directories, you need to install cwRync and get the following files: rsync.exe, cygwin1.dll and cygz.dll

This allows you to synchronize local directories.

Example: It synchronizes the directory "F: / my files" on the USB key to the folder :c:\usb"

rsync -r -v --size-only --chmod=ugo=rwX "/cygdrive/f/my file" "/cygdrive/c/usb"

It is recommended to use - size-only because the modified date of files in Windows is not always reliable.
- chmod=ugo= rwX is important otherwise you cannot read the files in the destination (NTFS rights locked without this option)

Related :

This document entitled « RSync under Windows » from CCM ( is made available under the Creative Commons license. You can copy, modify copies of this page, under the conditions stipulated by the license, as this note appears clearly.