How to copy a complete folder to another in Google Drive

Ever since its launch some four years back Google Drive has acted and served as a dependable online vault that we can use to secure and store our important files and folders. It offers a big help against accidental data loss along with a bulky data storage space on the cloud.

It offers a plethora of service capabilities, almost all popular and resourceful features and functionalities you would expect to see in a file vault.

You can effortlessly rename files, move them between folders, add text notes to facilitate easy search or assign different colors to different files and folders to easily differentiate them.

However, one striking feature that is still missing in Google Drive is the comfort of copying folders and moving them from one folder to another.

How to copy a complete folder to another folder in Google Drive

You can easily duplicate a file in Google Drive, just right click and select ‘Make a Copy’, but this feature is not available for folders stored on Google Drive. You can’t duplicate them like this.

Though there exists a script to help you copy folders in Google Drive, it’s not much convincing due to its complex structure that’s a tough task for novice users. How nice it would have been, had there been an rsync (Unix, Mac) or an xcopy (Windows) type of command on Google Drive that would promptly and completely each and every file inside a folder. And why just copy files, it should even maintain tree structure and copy files with relevant assigned file permissions, along with copying all directories and sub directories.

Well, at least, as of now, we are not sure if Google will ever allow us to duplicate folders, however there is an open source web app by Eric YD which is right on money for us when it comes to doing the required task.

Here’s how to get started:

  1. Go to Xcopy web app and provide it the requested permissions to access your files stored on Google drive.
  2. The app will carry out the copy function from within the Google Drive and, therefore, you will need no third party application or service to get your task done.
  3. Once you have given the required permissions to the app select the source folder using Google File Picker and specify the destination folder name.
  4. Click the Copy Folder button to start copying selected folder.

That is all you need. The script will now run in the background to copy files one by one from the source folder to your specified destination folder. It will keep logging everything in a spreadsheet so that you can stay abreast of things being copied in the background, and the process status.

If required by you, the app can also retain permission in case the copied file can be viewed or read & edited by some users.

How to copy folder to another Google Drive account

Let us say you have a folder X in Google Drive account A and a folder Y in Google Drive account B.

While the app does not support cross account copying of files and folders, there’s still a trick you can follow to get your task done instantly. Here’s how to go about it:

  1. Use Xcopy to copy files to original account A.
  2. Log into account B, create and empty folder, and share it with account A
  3. Move to account A and copy the selected folder (that you intend to move from A to B) to the shared empty folder.
  4. Go back to Google Account B and remove sharing permissions for the folder you created.

Have a great time!