Disable Windows File Compression

How to disable the File Compression feature in Windows. These steps should work in Windows 2000, XP and Vista.

Windows 2000 and XP

1. Hold down the Windows key and press R.

2. Type regedit and click OK.

3. Click the plus sign next to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
then CurrentControlSet
then Control
then click FileSystem.

4. Look for an entry on the right side for NtfsDisableCompression. If it doesn’t exist, you will need to create it. To do so, right-click on FileSystem and select New > DWORD Value. Give the value a name of NtfsDisableCompression. Press the Enter key when you are done.

5. Right-click the NtfsDisableCompression entry and click Modify.

6. To disable compression set the Value data to 1. (To enable compression again, set the Value data to 0 or delete NftsDisableCompression)

7. Restart the computer to apply changes.

Now when trying to compress a folder, the following error will be produced:

Error Applying Attributes

An error occurred applying attributes to the file:
{file path and filename}
Access is denied.


Windows 7 and Vista Command

In Windows 7 and Vista, you can accomplish the same thing by simply using the following command on the Run line:

fsutil behavior set disablecompression 1


  1. Sam Clemens says

    Stephan is right. The correct way to do this is to delete the “Compress Old Files” key in the registry.

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\VolumeCaches\Compress Old Files

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