Is there any real difference between a “copy and paste” method versus the
old tried and true method of using the Edit menu, select all the files you want
to copy to another location and then select the “copy to a folder” command
which brings up the standard browse dialog box in which you navigate to the
destination and then click “copy”. I would imagine that both methods copy
exactly the same number of bytes, every 0 and every 1. It’s just a matter of
In this excerpt from
Answercast #93 I look at various ways of copying and moving files around in
Windows. How you do it is basically a matter of personal preference.
Copy/paste vs. copy-to-folder
You imagine correctly. And in fact, neither is tried or true. You will find that many people are only aware of the copy/paste method and have no inkling that the other method even exists.
And those are only two of what turns out to be several methods:
You can drag and drop;
You can use copy and paste, of course;
You can go to a command prompt and use copy commands at the command line.
Copying is copying
There are many, many different ways to copy and move files around in Windows. They are ultimately, at the end of the day, all doing exactly the same thing. They’re copying a bunch of bits from one location to another. And they all fundamentally do it the same way once the process is initiated.
What it boils down to is, as you’ve correctly identified, personal preference. Whatever you are comfortable with; whichever model of understanding how copying files works works for you.
So there’s no difference. Use whichever one you feel most comfortable with and don’t be surprised if you find somebody else is more comfortable with something else.
(Transcript lightly edited for readability.)