Mar 072008

The NTFS file system has many advantages over FAT32 under Vista. One of these is the capability of compressing a folder to save disk space. Retrieving files from a compressed folder takes slightly longer than a normal folder; other than that the compression is totally invisible. You might want to compress folders that you don’t use frequently if disk space is an issue. NTFS compression doesn’t compress as dramatically as Zip-type compression,but is less obtrusive.

On an NTFS drive, files and folders have an Advanced button in the General tab of their properties box. It’s your gateway to the NTFS properties for the item

From the file or folder Properties box, click the General tab.Click the Advanced button.

The Advanced Attributes dialog box opens.Mark the Compress Contents to Save Disk Space check box to compress the item, and then click OK.

Choose Apply Changes to This Folder Only, or choose Apply Changes to This Folder, Subfolders,and Files. Then click OK.

NTFS compressed folders and files appear with their names in blue rather than black to differentiate them from normal ones when you choose the Show Encrypted or Compressed NTFS Files in Color option in the Folder options dialog box. To decompress them, follow the same steps but clear the check box.

When you move or copy a compressed file or folder onto a non-NTFS drive, it’s automatically uncompressed.

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  2 Responses to “How to Use NTFS Compression in Vista”

  1. Using this technique helped with my XP system a lot, since it now reads from the hard disk less often. However, I have never been able to compress everything in Vista, due to an “Access Denied” error. This must be another cause for the frequent disk clogging that my machine suffers from at bootup. I might want to experiment with the permissions of my spare user account, so I can successfully compress everything.

  2. Green encrypted subfolders does not turn normal in black font. Pictures are scanned and MS office general doc.


    Using external harddrive 320 GB.

    I can see some folders turn green to black but not subfolders . something else in MS Office.

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