FreeFileSync Open Source File Synchronization

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FreeFileSync User Manual:

External Applications

When you double-click on one of the rows on the main dialog, FreeFileSync opens the operating system's file browser by default:
Windows:explorer /select, "%local_path%"
macOS: open -R "%local_path%"
Linux: xdg-open "$(dirname "%local_path%")"
To customize this behavior, or integrate other external applications into FreeFileSync, navigate to Menu → Tools → Options → Customize context menu and add or replace a command.

All entries can be accessed quickly by pressing the associated numeric keys 0–9 or via the context menu that is shown after a right mouse click. The first entry can also be executed by double-clicking on an item.

In addition to regular Macros, the following special macros are available:
Macro Description
Full file or folder path
Creates a temporary local copy for files located on SFTP and MTP storage. Identical to %item_path% for files on local disks and network shares.
File or folder name
Parent folder path

Note: To refer to the item on the opposite side, append "2" to the macro name: e.g. %item_path2%, %local_path2%, %item_name2%, %parent_path2%.


  • Start a file content comparison tool (WinMerge):
    "C:\Program Files (x86)\WinMerge\WinMergeU.exe" "%local_path%" "%local_path2%"

    opendiff on macOS (requires Xcode):
    opendiff "%local_path%" "%local_path2%"

  • Show file in Windows Explorer:
    explorer.exe /select, "%local_path%" & exit 0
    Explorer.exe does not set an exit code, but FreeFileSync checks for exit code 0 (="Success"). Therefore add (&) a command that sets the exit code manually: exit 0.

  • Open command prompt for the selected item:
    start cmd.exe /k cd /D "%parent_path%"
    FreeFileSync hides the console window, so start opens a new window. cmd.exe /k runs the following command without exiting. cd navigates to the directory, even if it's on a different volume (/D).

  • Copy item path to Clipboard (as alternative to CTRL + C)
    echo %item_path%| clip

  • Write list of selected file paths to a text file:
    echo %item_path% >> %csidl_Desktop%\file_list.txt

  • Preview files using Quick Look on macOS:
    qlmanage -p "%local_path%"

Macros need to be protected with quotation marks if they resolve to file paths that could contain whitespace characters.