Duplicate folders in iCloud after reinstall

Hi All,
I’m hoping you all have encountered this fiasco and know of a tool to help clear it up.

My wife is a writer who has a very elaborate system of nested folders to organize her writing projects. Were talking nests of up to 5-6 folders deep. All kept in iCloud to sync between desktop and laptop.

This past week her laptop has been away getting a new keyboard installed (yes, that problem) and when we got it back I reinstalled from a time machine backup and all looked ok until I discovered her folders in the iCloud folder.

During the week without the laptop, my wife used that time to reorganize and rearrange many of her folders and when the restored laptop synched up it decided to put the folders, arranged as they were two weeks ago, resulting in a mares nest of duplicate nested folders.

I’m hoping that there may be a file management app that can help us out here. I’m familiar with Gemini, but though I’d seek advice for you all. Thanks.

A subtlety, if I understand correctly, the time machine backup is the one that has the folders as they were two weeks ago. The iCloud copy is the new version synced from the desktop.
Assuming you have good backups (caveat emptor), you could sign out of iCloud on the laptop, delete the contents of the iCloud drive, then sign into iCloud again. This should download the contents of iCloud from the cloud, as saved from the desktop.

You restored the old iCloud folders and synced them back to iCloud.
I suggest to remove the iCloud account from her laptop and don’t keep the data.

Log into her iCloud account and clean up the files (you can restore up to 30 day’ back in time)

Verify that all the iCloud data has disappeared from here MacBook.
Reconnect the Laptop back to her iCloud account.

Unfortunately the desktop has already synched to the iCloud from which the laptop “adjusted.”
All three locations, the laptop, the desktop and iCloud all show the same helter-skelter duplicate folder structure.

Here is the KB article about restoring
files on iCloud.


I had a similar situation created by a badly behaved utility. I bought BeyondCompare and got things sorted out.

Thanks for everyone’s input. We were not able to restore from older iCloud since that restores previously deleted files. We were dealing with duplicate content so it was kind of a different animal.

We did have great success with Gemini 2 by MacPaw. We even ended up cleaning out many more duplicates that had been there for a while.


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