Powershell script – create folder and zip – backup

You have a folder that you would like to compress with one click and save the result to a specific folder and file name. To have a regular backup and archive, multiple backup files e.g. every night or on each user logon/logoff should be created.

The following simple powershell scripts allow to compress the content of a folder and create a zip file on another location. This can be used e.g. as a simple backup solution.


The following scripts require Powershell 4/5 for Windows, and Powershell 6 for Mac/Linux/arm user (using Powershell Core).

Simple script – zip file for directory with same target file name

The following powershell script creates a zip file based from $sourceDir and writes the result to $targetFile .

$sourceDir = 'c:\data';
$targetFile = 'c:\backup\data.zip'

## no changes here
Add-Type -A 'System.IO.Compression.FileSystem';
[IO.Compression.ZipFile]::CreateFromDirectory($sourceDir, $targetFile);

Advanced script – zip backup file with target filename including timestamp

The following advanced powershell script creates a zip file based on the content of the folder $sourceDir. The output is written to a file named “data-” and the current timestamp, located in the $targetDir.

$sourceDir = 'c:\data';
$targetDir = 'c:\backup\'
$targetFilenameBase = 'data-';

## no changes here
$date = get-date;
$dateStr = $date.ToString("yyyy-MM-dd_HH-mm");
$targetFile = $targetDir+$targetFilenameBase+$dateStr+'.zip';

Add-Type -A 'System.IO.Compression.FileSystem';
[IO.Compression.ZipFile]::CreateFromDirectory($sourceDir, $targetFile);

How to use the backup powershell script

Just copy the content of one of the solutions in a text editor or the Windows PowerShell Integrated Scripting Environment (ISE) , save the result to a file as e.g. create_backup.ps1 and run it.

Other solutions

Windows 10 provides further backup application and features – with some advanced features, that require addition settings and hardware.

Powershell 7 provides also features to create and decompress zip files with the functions Compress-Archive and Expand-Archive .

Please specify the install prefix of iconv with –with-iconv

Error message

configure: error: Please specify the install prefix of iconv with --with-iconv=

Related to

MAMP compilation of PHP extensions as e.g. pnctl or mongo as described e.g. at http://adam.merrifield.ca/2014/09/21/php-mongodb-and-mamp/ or http://linhmtran168.github.io/blog/2013/12/10/setup-boris-with-mamp-in-mac-osx-mavericks/


run configure without iconv support:

./configure --without-iconv

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