I have an image file on my NTFS filesystem and get the following message when I try to copy to my FAT32 drive:

Are you sure you want to copy this file without its properties?

I can't find any properties on it. What is it talking about? All of the files in these subdirectories trigger this warning.

3 Answers 3


Standard properties, that are not supported on all systems the same: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Add-tags-or-other-properties-to-a-file

For ADS, get some kind of ADS viewing capability and seeing if it was used for good or evil purposes. Even if it was for evil purposes, it is like other "data" in that an actual executable (of some sort) would be needed to make use of the data for evil purposes.

For tags and ratings, look in the properties of the files, or sort the "details" columns to show more items, use the Hover tooltips, etc.

Robocopy and other copy methods exist that would drop that data without popping up the requester.

My normal system had very limited use of the ADS on some files (being used for good). some of the system files had tags on them, other than that, the scans I did, did not show it on "every file" and on "downloaded files" and stuff like that. Hijackthis has an ADS scanner. I know very little about this, so I would be interested in anything you find out.

  • I was thinking it could be ADS but i doubt it. I'm looking into it. I think its ACL but thats kind of ridiculous. -edit- Nope it isn't ADS :x
    – user3109
    Mar 23, 2012 at 5:57
  • @acidzombie24 At first I was thinking it might be some permissions or file properties, but I have all that, and have never seen this particular request. Also many other questions on it came up with zero answers, so I just assumed it was some super hidden stuff.
    – Psycogeek
    Mar 23, 2012 at 6:07
  • 1
    Actually it is but they are all 0byte streams... -edit- I thought this app shows all files twice. It turns out all the files had 0 byte ADS. It can scan subdirs and luckily it didnt have many files. I saw ALL files had 0byte ADS so... yeah nothing in there and just weird. Now i moved them and... dont care.
    – user3109
    Mar 23, 2012 at 6:12
  • @acidzombie24 Thanks for the update, I put the other one in, so it is better now.
    – Psycogeek
    Mar 23, 2012 at 6:27
  • 1
    IIRC, ADS is used for EFS, and moving EFS encrypted files to FAT32 will make them unreadable forever.
    – paradroid
    Apr 23, 2015 at 3:38

My crude but effective solution is a 7-line script. Whenever the dreaded dialog appears, the script presses Alt-A for "do this for all", and Alt-Y for "yes, lose the properties."

Compile it yourself. It's free and not terribly hard:

  1. Download and install AutoITScript (It's free and widely trusted alternative to VBScript. I used it because I've found VBScript unreliable in detecting Windows dialogs that are rapidly appearing/disappearing and modal, inactive, minimized, or otherwise odd. And, AutoIT is absurdly easy to compile to a standalone .exe, which I like.)

  2. From the Github repository (https://github.com/joshwhitk/suppress-property-loss-dialog-during-copy-in-Windows-Explorer), save only the script file "stop-copy-dialog.au3" to your desktop. Open it in any text editor and read it carefully. When you're convinced it's harmless, rename it if you like and continue.

  3. On your desktop, right-click this .au3 file. and choose "compile script (x86)" from the context menu (AutoIT added these). An .exe file (e.g "stop-copy-dialog.exe") will be created on your desktop. (You can uninstall AutoIT and delete the .au3 file now.)

  4. Move this .exe file to your Startup folder (where? press Win-R to run shell:startup)

Run it, or reboot, and you're done! It runs in the background forever. When this (or any AutoITS script) is running, you'll see a new icon in your tray. It's a small white tab with a green square on the left.

Obviously, this script is a crude workaround. I would LOVE IT if someone figured out how to suppress those dialogs in the first place!

Please update Github with a text note if you do know of a better way (ie a registry setting).



Josh Whitkin Oakland, California 94611 whitkin.com


If you change a USB drives format to ntsf most radios will not recognize the drive. So copying music with the album cover included will not work that way. You have to copy the music and then go in and insert the album covers into each file. The answer given by MSft are deficient on this. It is a MSFT problem only.

  • This doesn't really answer the question.
    – fixer1234
    Jan 20, 2016 at 5:57

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