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Jeroen W. Pluimers on .NET, C#, Delphi, databases, and personal interests

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Archive for the ‘NTFS’ Category

Cipher: a command-line tool to decrypt/encrypt files and directories (een recursively) on Windows

Posted by jpluimers on 2020/07/03

A while ago, I had to mass encrypt a lot of directories and files on Windows for some directories in an existing directory structure.

This helped me to find out which ones were already done (it lists all encrypted files on all drives; the /n ensures the files or encryption keys are not altered):

cipher.exe /u /n /h

This encrypted recursively in one directory B:\Directory:

cipher /D /S:B:\Directory /A

It also has options to wipe data (/W), export keys into transferrable files (/X) and many more.

If you like the Windows Explorer more then to encrypt/decrypt (it is a tedious process): [WayBack] How do I encrypt/decrypt a file? | IT Pro.



Posted in Encryption, NTFS, Power User, Security, Windows | Leave a Comment »

When storing huge files under NTFS compression, ensure you have twice the disk space

Posted by jpluimers on 2020/01/31

When copying over a 400 gigabyte file over the network to an NTFS compressed folder on a drive with having 600 gigabytes free space, the volume became full after copying ~350 gigabytes.

What I learned is that compressing huge files for later read-only access is fine, but you need about twice the disk space while the copy operation is in progress.

For non-compressed files you can go without this extra reservation.

Background information:

Note there are also issues with NTFS compression and de-duplication. I’m not sure about sparse files. Be careful when you try to compress the system drive where your Windows OS lives on:


Posted in NTFS, Power User, Windows | Leave a Comment »

Fixing a broken mirrored Intel Matrix RAID-1 machine

Posted by jpluimers on 2018/04/20

A while ago I had an Intel Matrix RAID-1 pair of drives that got broken. One of them turned “red” and – since both drives were only a few serial numbers apart – the other was giving issues the moment I tried fiddling with it.

These actions failed:

  1. Windows image backup – would end up with a “blue” screen indicating Windows 10 had a problem and was trying to collect data
  2. Paragon HDM
    1. Migrating the OS to a brand new RAID-1 set
    2. P2V
  3. Disk2vhd would hang at the 100% completion mark

What had succeeded was a regular Windows backup (a non-image one).

This is what I finally did to get it working again:

  1. Kill disk2vhd after it hung a few hours at the 100% completion mark
  2. Verify with
  3. Mark the VHD file as online using diskpart (first atach the vdisk, select disk, then mark it online)
  4. Verify with chkdsk that the image was in fact without problems
  5. Detach the VHD file using diskpart
  6. Copy the VHD file to a HDD that Paragon HDM would recognise
  7. Use Paragon HDM to perform a V2P copy
    • Paragon expects a .VD file, but if you ask it to use all file types, it does recognise that VHD files contain disk images



Posted in NTFS, Power User, Windows, Windows 10 | Leave a Comment »

17 years ago, C:\nul\nul crashed/BSOD Windows; now $MFT does for Windows < 10

Posted by jpluimers on 2017/05/26


History repeating itself: [Archive.is31607 – C:\nul\nul crashes/BSOD then, now it’s this:


All versions prior to Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016 seem vulnerable.

So add $MFT to this list:

The following device names have been known to render a system unstable: CON,

Oh BTW: history repeated itself this year too. With NUL

In short, Steven Sheldon created a rust package named nul which broke the complete package manager on Windows:

BTW: one of my gripes on learning new languages is that they come with a whole new idiom of their ecosystem: rust, cargo, crates, all sound like being a truck mechanic to me.


Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Development, Microsoft Surface on Windows 7, NTFS, Power User, Security, Software Development, The Old New Thing, Windows, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 9, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows Defender, Windows Development, Windows ME, Windows NT, Windows Server 2000, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016, Windows Vista, Windows XP | Leave a Comment »

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