Move files and directories to another location

by admin on January 5, 2014

This tutorial explains how to move files or directories to another location on a Windows system.

Move files to another directory

move filename destinationFolder

Example: to move file ‘data.docx’ to the folder ‘d:\backup\folder’

move  data.docx  d:\backup\folder\ 

You can also rename the file while moving it to the new location

move data.docx  d:\backup\folder\newData.docx

We can’t move multiple files with single command. i.e the below command would not work.

move file1 file2  D:\folder1\folder2

This would give the error The syntax of the command is incorrect.

However we can use wildcards to move files in bulk.  For example, if you want to move all text files from current folder to a new location you can use the below command.

move *.txt  destinationDirectory

To move all files starting with letter ‘A’, you can use below command.

move A*  destinationDirectory

Move directories


move directory newDirectoryPath

Example: To move the directory ‘data’ to ‘D:\data\folder1\’

move data D:\data\folder1

1. Can we move multiple directories using wild cards like the way we do it with files?
No, wild cards does not work for directories. You get the below error

C:\>move tmp* Documents\folder1\
The filename, directory name, or volume label syntax is incorrect.

2. How to specify the directories/files which have white spaces in the names?
You need to enclose the name of the file/directory in double quotes.

Example: move "file with spaces"  "D:\directory with spaces"

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Marius July 4, 2014 at 7:53 am

Could some one point out why windows command line could not execute

move file1 file2 destinationDirectory ?


Charles August 21, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Because with the syntax the command is expecting, you told it to move file1 to file2 (which already isn’t going to work) and then gave it an argument of destination Directory, which it then has no idea what to do with, cause it isn’t a valid argument, in addition to the command you issues failing.

bo January 19, 2015 at 4:58 pm

very helpful, I am missing one piece, I am trying to move all files from a “Camera Uploads” folder (dropbox) to another folder… not sure how to do a move involving all files inside a directory with a space… any ideas… “C:\Dropbox\Camera Uploads\*.*” doesn’t work… thanks!


lolololol January 24, 2015 at 10:29 pm

i think this would do the trick
“C:\Dropbox\Camera Uploads\*”

nirav August 31, 2015 at 4:01 pm

can anyone suggest, how can I achieve below, via DOS command ?
I want to move all files and folders from source folder to destination folder.
e.g. C:\source\file1.txt

I want to move everything form C:\source form C:\destination ( like CUT from C:\source and PASTE into C:\Destination)

Thanks in advance.


usman November 26, 2015 at 6:31 am

move -y “C:\source\file1.txt ” “C:\source\subsource\file1.txt”


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