Why are my filtered out files and folders not deleted from the destination?

When a file or folder is filtered out, or un-selected in the file & folder selection tree, you are explicitly telling SyncBack to ignore those files and folders. Because those files and folders are now being ignored (they are not part of the backup or sync), SyncBack ignores them and therefore they are not deleted.

SyncBack V8 introduced an option to delete an entire un-selected folder. This option allows you to explicitly set a deselected folder for deletion from "Choose sub-directories and files" settings page. To delete an un-ticked folder from destination:

  • Un-tick the folder that you want to delete from destination
  • Right click and select 'Delete from Destination' from the pop-up menu

When the profile is next run the folder, and everything in it, will be deleted. Note that this feature is available only for folders and not for files.

Alternatively, you can manually delete those files & folders from the destination. You may want to do this to be sure you no longer need those files. Another option is to delete the backup completely and repeat the process (this time, the files it is now ignoring will not be copied).

Some users expect SyncBack to delete un-selected files and folders from destination (or source) automatically, however, this is not supported with SyncBack. Un-selected files and folders are removed from the profile, but they are not deleted from destination (or source) because this can cause unintentional deletion of important data if a file/folder is accidentally deselected from the selections tree.

For example: Let’s say you have created a profile to mirror files from D:\ drive to C:\ drive (where your Windows and Program Files are stored). Using the files/folder selections window, you have un-ticked the \Windows\ folder from the profile. When you run the profile, SyncBack will safely ignore the Windows folder from both source and destination locations and does not delete any file from that folder. Otherwise, your Windows folders and its contents will be deleted from C:\ drive resulting in a major data loss.