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EOS R6 Mark II Canon EOS Utility: avoid double transfer from a backup SD card


Dear Community members,

Having just switched to the R6 Mark II body, I've noticed a slightly annoying download procedure. In my R6 I have two identical SD cards, ensuring that my images are simultaneously saved to both cards so that they are backed up.

Now, on automatic image download using Canon EOS Utility 3 (v. on Win 11), all the images are downloaded, that is, from both cards, so that (i) download takes double time & disk space and (ii) each image comes as two identical copies, with the second copy having a "_1" extension (say, if the image from the first card has filename IMG_1234.CR3, then the one form the other card is named IMG_1234_1.CR3); apparently, both files are identical.

Although there are several ways to get rid of the backup copies after transfer, the fact that each download is doubled is quite annoying. I've gone through EOS Utility preferences, but have not been able to find an appropriate setting to avoid double transfer of images. I also don't like possible solution to remove one SD card from its slot just before transfer and putting it back after the transfer has been done -- messing up with cards increases the risk of breaking something, plus it is awkward.

Any ideas how to avoid double image transfer during automatic download?

Many thanks in advance for your help!



Not applicable

If using Windows OS, use Windows file explorer to view the memory cards, and only select one card to download from.

Thanks for your suggestion, but doesn't this effectively switch off automatic download? With EOS Utility you can manually select the card to download images from, but again, in order to do so, one needs to proceed with manual rather than automatic download -- which is awkward.

Not applicable

Using File Explorer to view and download the files is a manual process and doesn't use the EOS Utility. You would view the folder in File Explorer, press Control-A to select all the files and copy and paste into your preferred folder on your hard drive.


I am not experiencing this type of issue.  Check the SD card playback settings in the camera, as well as the download options settings in the EOS Utility.

"The right mouse button is your friend."

Hi there,

Sorry for a late reply; it took me a while to get back to my camera.

I've checked my playback settings (all pages within the playback tab), but found nothing worth mentioning there (save the option of copying all images from one card to another -- but that's most likely not applicable to the problem). On the setup tab, first option on the first page (selecting cards for recording/playback) I've selected "Record to multiple" for both stills and video, which supposedly writes all the recorded content to both cards.

In EOS Utility preferences, I've selected "Exectute [Start automatic download]" as startup action on the first tab, and apparently there are no advanced options available for this (save the filename and destination folder).

All in all, I may have missed something, but momentarily I have no clue what that may be. Care to share your camera and EOS Utility settings to make this clearer?



(save the option of copying all images from one card to another -- but that's most likely not applicable to the problem).“

Perhaps that is the problem.  I suggest that you interrogate the folders on your memory cards using a card reader.  Look for the duplicate file names that you say get downloaded.  

It almost sounds like your originals and your copies are being downloaded.

"The right mouse button is your friend."

Dear Waddizzle,

This is perfectly clear: both my originals and copies are being downloaded. As for the aforementioned option (copying images on request using the menu), I stress that I've seen it but never used it. That said, on activating the "Record to multiple" option, same files (same filenames & sizes) appear on both cards. On download, one set of files is given the "_1" suffix in order to avoid identical names.

How did you set up your settings in order to (i) ensure instant and seamless backup and (ii) avoid double file transfer?

Thanks and all best,


Hello, jernej.

Windows "Autoplay" does the same thing when set to download pictures and movies from my R5. It includes images on both cards in the download and you manually have to exclude duplicates. I have my R5 and 6II setup the same way as you (duplicates as backup). I have always just removed card 2 (SD) and moved the files to a folder that I have setup then after editing, deleted the files on card 1 using the "Delete files" command in the camera. I do have my cameras set to "view" from card 1.

I suspect that the dual card download is caused by the fact that technically, your system is seeing two drives, so it downloads them both.

I would suggest that if you want the "Auto Download" feature of the EOSU, which I see can be handy in the way that it creates dated folders, you just need to simply pop out card 1 before connecting and let the software download just the images on disk 2. It may be slightly inconvenient, but it's a workaround to keep you from having to delete duplicates. Not perfect, but a simple solution 🙂


EOS R5, R6, R6II. RF 15-35 f/2.8L, 50mm f/1.2L, 85mm f/1.2L, 100mm f/2.8L Macro, 100-400mm, 100-500mm L, 1.4X.

Hi Newton,

Thanks for your kind reply and suggestions. This solution may be efficient in that it facilitates both seamless image transfer w/o duplicates and backing the images up at the same time. However, I don't quite like the solution, because each time one opens the card door and manipulates with cards, there is a small but non-vanishing chance that something goes wrong -- you may break or drop something. While the risk is certainly low, I'd prefer avoiding that risk & redundant work.

I wonder if Canon SW developers could have tweaked this little detail properly -- after all, many camera owners use two cards in the same manner and not all of them can afford doubled download time and required storage.

Thanks again, and all best,


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