How to copy an entire folder structure without copying the files (tip for starting the new financial year)

Here’s my tip to start the financial year off with some organisation. If you save your important files in a folder structure per financial year, then you will be ready to create that new folder for the new tax year. To save time and keep your filing structure consistent you can quickly copy the entire structure (including all subfolders) with the following technique. Using this technique, only the folder structure is copied (not the actual files). So you will be up and going with your new folder structure for the tax year and continue filing.

Here’s a simplified version of what my filing structure looks like:


Now simply create your new folder (under which you want to duplicate the folder structure)


Now open a Windows command window and run the following command. It’s the /T option that copies just the folder structure not the files. You can also use the /E option to include  empty folders in the copy (by default empty folders will not be copied).

xcopy “c:\users\cdwyer\documents\2012-2013” “c:\users\cdwyer\documents\2013-2014” /T /E


Job done, you should now see your copied folder structure ready to start filing into for the new year.


About Cameron Dwyer

Architect and developer at OnePlace Solutions. Passionate about delivering compelling solutions on the Office 365/SharePoint platform. Addicted to coffee.

Posted on July 5, 2013, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Thanks Cameron for the info! Do you know if this method will work for folders stored in Office 365 SharePoint 2013? If not, do you have any suggestions for copying a folder structure without the files in SharePoint 2013? Thanks!


    • This post will only work with local folders not SharePoint or Office 365 directly. What you could do though is sync a SharePoint or Office 365 library locally using OneDrive for Business then the xcopy method will work since you are just playing with local folder structure and OneDrive will take care of syncing the new folder structure back up to SharePoint/Office 365.


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