Migration: Syncing existing folders that contain files?


I’m finally migrating a group of machines from a very old version of BTSync over to SyncThing. It’s about time.

I’m curious about how to do this the easiest way … and if my plans will work?

  1. Disconnect BTSync from the sync’d folders on both machines.
  2. Install SyncThing on both machines - exchange Device IDs.
  3. Add a folder to SyncThing - pointing to the existing folder filled with files - on both machines
  4. Wait for indexing to complete?
  5. Edit the devices on both machines and add the folder to be shared?
  6. SyncThing on both machines should see they are already in sync and be happy? :slight_smile:

Is there any problem with doing it this way?

to 3. Be sure to use the same folder id, or you won’t be able to sync.

This will work. But as Syncthing can’t tell without “sync” that the content is really the same, it will seam that it syncs, but if the metadata (mtime, permissions, …) is the same, syncthing will do nothing to the files and should quickly show up to date.

Depending on the amount of data (size, number of files / folders) the initial index exchange can take some time and data will be transfered.

If it isn’t the metadata will be changed on one of the devices which shouldn’t produce conflics and will be fast as well, without much data transfer.

So I’d set up one folder as send-only as a precaution.

Thank you to everyone here! Things are working so far! :slight_smile:

I was able to get my first folders migrated, and it’s working well.

Due to your feedback, the final steps are:

  • Disconnect BTSync from the sync’d folder on ALL machines.

NOTE: Most of my folders were being sync’d to THREE OR MORE machines, and so I have kept at least one as a “backup” to ensure that everything goes smoothly.

  • Install SyncThing on ALL machines
  • Add a New Folder, on the first machine, to SyncThing, pointing to the existing folder filled with files ** NOTE: Make note of the Folder ID, as this must be set to be identical on all other machines!
  • Add the same New Folder to SyncThing on the other machines, pointing to the existing folder filled with files, and ensuring that the Folder ID is set to be identical to the first machine
  • Wait for all machines to complete indexing
  • Add the other “Remote Devices” (other machines) to each other, and ensure they can all see each other ** NOTE: At this time I did NOT yet share the folders
  • Wait for all “Remote Devices” to see each other
  • Edit the “Remote Devices” and add the folder(s) to be shared
  • SyncThing on both machines will restart, and then detect the folders, and will see they are already in sync and be happy! :slight_smile:

As stated above, if you do NOT have more than two machines being sync’d prior to doing this, you really ought to make a back-up of the folder to another place or disk just to be sure!

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