Separate folder for ".bak" files

Just realized there is another option to avoid seeing the .bak file.

You can open Projects from the Media Bay in addition to the File/Open command. Since you can easily filter the results in Media Bay you could set it to only show .cpr files.

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Huge complaint for colleagues and clients that the project folder gets inundated with tons of .bak files

Out of curiosity, what are you people doing that you have so many .bak files that they are cumbersome? I can see the occasional project having a .bak file in the project folder, but “tons of .bak files”? What the heck are you doing that leads to the creation of all those .bak files?

Well if you have Cubase set to do an auto-backup every six minutes and you limit it to only retaining 10 files that means you can only get back to the last hour’s worth of edits etc. If you want 2 hours you need to retain 20. Since the .bak files are insurance of sorts, keeping more backups gives you more coverage.

I have mine set save every 10 minutes to retain 18 copies (aka 3 hours worth) and even so I’ve had one maybe two times when all of the available backups had the same problem as the main project file. So it is not baseless to retain a bunch of them.

Your risk tolerance may vary.

True, that makes sense.

FWIW, Logic uses a separate backup folder.

Been pondering a workaround for awhile and think there is a good way to do this except I don’t know how to do the last step (if possible).

The idea is to use the hidden file attribute in Windows to control visibility to .bak files. If the .bak files are set hidden then you will only see them when Windows Explorer is showing hidden items like this:


While you can manually set a file hidden in the file’s Properties, you can do a whole disk’s worth using the command line prompt. But the limitation/problem with this is changing the attribute only works for the existing files, so newly created .bak files will not have the hidden attribute set. So they will start coming back. To get around this I put the command in a batch file that should be run with Admin privs.

:: Sets all the Cubase .bak files so they have the Hidden attribute set
:: Change the command from "+" to "-" to clear the Hidden attribute
:: Works on D: disk, change location to where your Cubase Projects are

@ECHO OFF

attrib +h /s D:*.bak

:: PAUSE

You can just execute the “attrib” command at the command line prompt, but the advantage of having it in a file is that you can use Task Scheduler to execute it (just copy the code into a text file with the .bat extension). For first time use, run the file (or command) to hide all existing .bak files. Now the only .bak files you see will be new ones. Using Task Scheduler create a task that runs the batch file at startup. Now you will only see .bak files created after starting the PC - so, not that many, but still some.

To get all the .bak files to always be set hidden even when they are brand new requires changing the Trigger used for the batch file execution in Task Scheduler. This is what I don’t know how to do, but I’m under the impression that there are triggers available that can detect changes to a folder that might be a mechanism to run the batch file as needed. If so the script should be changed so that instead of changing a whole disk it only changes files in that specific folder.

Deleted my post.

(Did not look at subsequent posts on the next page, where pretty much the same comment was made by raino).

You could also use software (see app links below) that monitors folders and automatically handles new files according to a set of rules. So you could have the app monitor your project folder and recognize new bak files being created in any of your project folders, rename or append them (eg. with time and date stamp) and move them to another folder.

One possible setup: 1.) have the app monitor the parent project folder with all subfolders, 2.) set it up to recognize any new bak files created (in any subfolder - so you only need to set it up once), 3.) have it append the files with a time stamp and 4.) move them all to one central backup folder.

That way, all your project backups are in one folder (alphabetically according to the original project name - with time stamp or whatever else you want to add). If you choose to add time stamp, make sure to follow the pattern YEAR-MONTH-DAY-HOUR-MIN, that way all files in your central BAK folder can then be sorted alphabetically according to project name first, then year, then month, then day aso.

At the end, you will have all the bak files from all projects and all different stages of your project all in one folder, plus: any new BAKs created in the initial folder will not be overwritten. You could take this a lot further (backing up the backup folder aso).

One such app is DropIt and it is free (open source / WIN).

I personally also use another free tool from Microsoft (SyncToy) to mirror my entire project folder to another (slower and cheaper) HDD on a weekly basis. That’s an extra level of backup-security (no sync, just A>B mirror).

App Links

Six different WIN Apps for file management: https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/automatically-organize-files-windows/
Microsoft SyncToy 2.1 (free): https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=15155

I am sure, there are MAC equivalents you can google (one is such app is Hazel from Noodlesoft). Just google “noodle” (;

Please - why not?

I appreciate the workarounds but, honestly, why should we complicate things this way with third party apps and services running in the background, when all we are asking is the ability to define a custom folder? It could be a single line in Preferences.

For the simple reason that the capability isn’t currently available. Maybe in the future this FR will result in this feature being added - or maybe not (plenty of examples of that for sure). And even if it does, that tends to take awhile to occur - i.e. historically it takes a long time between request and feature.

In the meantime (or maybe forever) your choices are a workaround or nothing - sorry, but that’s it.

As I said, I truly appreciate that some of you offered your help and proposed alternative solutions. My comment was addressed to Steinberg only.

Yes!
A folder for backups and a folder for renders.

AUDIO
IMAGES
TRACK PICTURES
RENDERS
BACKUPS


Something like that.

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AGREE!

Yes, that would be so nice. What a clutter, all those .bak files!

Created a batch file to hide extension (.BAK) in all project folders

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