XP "Error copying file or folder" message

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Posts: 49   +0
I have 3 HD's running. Two (NTFS) internal and one (FAT32) external.

A 300GB (NTFS) with about 14GB of free space.
A 60GB (NTFS) with 9GB of free space.
A 160GB (FAT32) with 149GB of free space.

I am getting this error message while trying to transfer a 4GB Movie from the 300GB HD to the 160GB HD saying "Error copying file or folder, There is not enough free disk space". Obviously there is enough disk space on the target drive for the movie but for some reason or another it doesn't think so. Windows also recognizes that there is the correct amount of space available, it only says there isn't when I try to transfer.

I tested transferring with other files and it works fine, its just that file. I also tried transferring it to the 60GB HD and it worked without any problems.

My questions are:

Is there something wrong with the file?

Is it that there isn't enough room in a temporary folder for it to transfer a file that big?

Is it the fact that they are different file systems?

Is there something wrong with my HD?

Or is it something that i'm not thinking of?

Thanks for your help. Sorry if this post is in the wrong section, I thought it was the most appropriate.


Posts: 13,806   +3
Thankfully you didn't try "moving" it, sometimes from doing this it vanishes from the source (as wanted) and never gets to the destination (due to out of memory error)

I've seen this myself, it's to do with system resource on your PageFile amount of Ram being used and the CPU coming in trying to process it all.

In most cases I have run CCleaner first then copied the large file(s) across without fuss.
It's just all the temp files together and Windows thinking that memory is low when it's just the processing of this memory in a temporary location (being %temp% usually)


Posts: 49   +0
I ran CCleaner and it removed 7GB (I cant beleive there was that much) of temp files and such. But I am still getting the same error message.


Posts: 13,806   +3
What is your PageFile set to anyway?
And how much Ram do you have?

Vista PageFile: (Xp is similar)
click the Start button
click Control Panel
click System and Maintenance
click Performance Information and Tools
click Advanced Tools (in the Tasks pane at the left side of the dialog box)
click Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows.

After answering the User Account Control prompt, you’ll arrive at the
Performance Options dialog box. You’re nearly there

click the Advanced tab, and then click Change.


Posts: 13,806   +3
Please set your Pagefile to

That'll do, there's no specifics here, it's a matter of trial and error

Actually you have 2 HardDrives !!!

Set C to 50Meg (Min and Max) ONLY
Set D (or whatever the other internal HardDrive is) to 1200 (Min and Max the same)


Start copying
Reply back with much thank-yous ;)


Posts: 49   +0
I did as you said.

Set my C drive to 50mb and my other internal drive to 1200 and restarted, unfortunately I am still getting the same error message :(

Would I have to create a pagefile for the external? Because im transferig between the internal I set to 1200 and the external with no page file.

BTW, thank you for your help and quick replies.


Posts: 13,806   +3
No the external is fine as is.

That'll do, there's no specifics here, it's a matter of trial and error
Although the above is true, I believe your PageFile is pretty damn close right now.

So, another CCleaner
Maybe a CheckDisk (actually Yes a CheckDisk)

Manual steps to run Chkdsk from My Computer or Windows Explorer
  • Open My Computer, and then right-click the hard disk that you want to check.
  • Click Properties, and then click Tools.
  • Under Error-checking, click Check Now. A dialog box that shows the Check disk options is displayed
Use one of the following procedures:
  • • To run Chkdsk in read-only mode, click Start.
  • • To repair errors without scanning the volume for bad sectors, select the Automatically fix file system errors check box, and then click Start. (tick)
  • • To repair errors, locate bad sectors, and recover readable information, select the Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors check box.

Note If one or more of the files on the hard disk are open, you will receive the following message:
The disk check could not be performed because the disk check utility needs exclusive access to some Windows files on the disk. These files can be accessed by restarting Windows. Do you want to schedule the disk check to occur the next time you restart the computer?
Click Yes to schedule the disk check, and then restart your computer to start the disk check.

Wait until Chkdsk finishes Checking / Repairing any faults
Windows will then either restart your computer or continue loading Normally.

Or Here for VISTA: http://www.maximumpcguides.com/how-to-use-check-disk-in-windows-vista/

Possibly turn off any not-required Programs (even Antivirus and your Network temporarily)

Maybe run a Defrag (after 7Gig Temp files removed, I'd say it's probably scattered all over the place)

Then a while from now (and after some restarts) Try Again ;)


Posts: 49   +0
OK, I'm still getting the same "Error copying file or folder, not enough disk space"

I ran CCleaner.

I ran Chkdsk on all 3 drives.

I defraged my C drive.

And I closed just about everything I didn't need to make the computer run.

im so frustrated. ><


Posts: 13,806   +3
I agree

and, assuming you intend to convert G Drive, give the command:


Note the name of the disk in the first line, and the Volume Serial Number (for example, 3F4E-2D1B) in the second. Then type:


Once the drive has been converted the hard disk will work for two or three minutes, tidying up. Leave things alone during this time.

Then copy your files over again


Posts: 49   +0
OK, I'm doing that now.

But this has brought up a question.

I have 5 HD's in total (3 external) 2 of them where FAT32, the problem is the other FAT32 is a 500GB that is nearly full in capacity. Will converting it erase all of the files on the drive?


Posts: 49   +0
It worked. ^^

Thank you both for your help. Especially Kimsland, your advice helped get my computer running faster than it has in a long time.

I'd like to convert my other FAT32 drive to NTFS but I'm worried I'd lose data. If anyone can let me know if converting the drive would mean loss of data, it would be much appreciated.


Posts: 49   +0
I found the answer to my last question. It seems that windows can convert the file systems without losing data.

But I don't understand why FAT32 is still used since its obsolete compared to NTFS, its just as easy to format to NTFS as it is FAT32 right?


Posts: 13,806   +3
ok I'm back on

You worked out that converting to NTFS from Fat32 does not give any data loss (although I would have said backup first (just in case) But it has worked for me without error in the past).

Then you asked why the drives are Fat32 (seeming NTFS is better, and just as easy to Partition to innitially)
All systems can see a Fat32 drive (inluding NTFS; Fat32; Dos)
But not all systems can see a NTFS drive (including Fat32; Dos)
So to make the drive easily accessible to all systems they (the distributor) make it Fat32.
Just for your information, just about all hidden backup images are made Fat32, so as the operating system can be seen through a Dos boot up CD (or floppy)

Therefore Fat32 has its merits still
But if you intend just to use these external HardDrives on your system only (being NTFS) then you will never have an issue with the drives seeing each-other in Windows.

I hope that answers your question.
Also after converting to NTFS, you should really Defrag the drives too. As the gaps between the secors of the drive have changed, which may have caused fragmentation. Oh and remove any temporary files first.


Posts: 2,610   +6
This is for reference:


This is the best answer I can find:

FAT32 uses 4 Kb clusters and is an efficient storage medium because of that (less wasted bytes). If you have a small storage drive and want to conserve space, then FAT32.

Nowadays, secondary storage drives are into the 200, 400, 500 and larger area SO that isn't necessary, BUT people with older still good storage drives may want to maximize their use.

Best I could find anyway.

If wrong, I will sit corrected!



Posts: 13,806   +3
To determine the cluster size of a volume, run the following command at a command prompt, and then note the "Bytes Per Cluster" value:
fsutil fsinfo ntfsinfo <volume>
Note The <volume> placeholder (ie G: ) represents the volume letter.

Please note the "Bytes Per Cluster" given.

Default cluster size for FAT and NTFS
Note it depends on the Maximum Volume size
But generally NTFS is 4KB
And Fat32 is anywhere between 4kb to 32kb (but generally 4kb as standard)


Posts: 49   +0
Thanks for the explanation on FAT32 and NTFS. Ironically I found out that it's not recognized on other systems first hand.........

I have a brand new dilemma now.

The reason I wanted to transfer the 4gb movie to an external was so that I could plug it into my PS3's USB ports and have it act as a storage extension. Unfortunately it seems that PS3 only recognizes FAT32...

I'm baffled now, how can I watch a 4gb movie on a PS3 if it cant recognize NTFS and I cant transfer a 4gb movie onto a FAT32 File system. :(

Can I convert it back, without removing the movie?

Can I break down the movie into portions like an archive file?

Or is there an easier way that I'm not thinking of?

Sorry for making this such a hassle.


Posts: 13,806   +3
Well I haven't looked up PS3 (as I deal with computers all the time)
But you cannot convert it back (at least I know that in computers)

Now if you had mentioned PS3 before, I probably would have checked if PS3 allows NTFS.

So yes a bit of a dilema!
Not sure right now on the best approach, probably check PS3 forums to see if NTFS can be allowed somehow.

All systems can see a Fat32 drive (inluding NTFS; Fat32; Dos)
But not all systems can see a NTFS drive (including Fat32; Dos)
So to make the drive easily accessible to all systems they (the distributor) make it Fat32.
Ok - I read all of this thread and other threads about the 4gb problem with FAT32. I figured that you would hear about the limitation before I got to the end. Here is my dilemma. I am not trying to copy files larger than 4gb just 4 mb and I get the error. "there is not enough free disk space"

I have an iomega network drive ethernet


Posts: 13,806   +3
Wow 4meg only
Is the drive you're copying to full?
Have you tried CCleaner?
Are you using NTFS and Fat32 ?
Is the Network cable ok?
Have you installed all the latest manufacture drivers and Windows security updates ?
Have you run CheckDisk on the drives?
Is the data being copied using another program?
Have you tried turning off Antivirus or Firewall?
Is this a large network, or do you have wireless connections too?
Are you going through a router?
Has the network been setup correctly?

There are many possibilities here
Is the drive you're copying to full? no
Have you tried CCleaner? no - but several different computers are having the problem XP and Vista
Are you using NTFS and Fat32 ? Fat32 (windows and mac)
Is the Network cable ok? will try to flop the two cables (have two 250gb drives)
Have you installed all the latest manufacture drivers and Windows security updates ? will try. no longer supported by iomega
Have you run CheckDisk on the drives? can't run chkdsk because they are network drives
Is the data being copied using another program? mostly a save in MS office (2003 and 2007)
Have you tried turning off Antivirus or Firewall? the computers involved have different AV and FW
Is this a large network, or do you have wireless connections too? wireless network through a Mac time capsule
Are you going through a router? yes mac time capsule
Has the network been setup correctly? yes - this problem just started. I have had the drive for years and switched to the tme capsule 6-9 months ago with no previous problems


Posts: 49   +0
Just to give an update on my situation (after a few days of racking my mind and surfing the net).

I did find a way for my PS3 to recognize and share files from a NTFS file system!!!!!!

But just when I thought I had it beat......PS3 doesn't recognize MKV files, which that specific movie is... (I was LOLing at how many times I thought I had it and then didn't.)

I tried converting it to an MP4 (which took 38 hours -_-), but in the end that didn't work either.

I've decided to give up, I'm more than satisfied with being able to get my PS3 to network with most my other media (MP4's and AVI's to be specific).

I have 2 500 GB HDs, 1 160GB Portable HD, 1 300GB Internal Backup HD, and of course my 60GB OS HD. All together 1.52 TB of media I can make more useful now.

Thank you all again for your help with my problem after problem. It's much appreciated.

Also, I wish you luck on your problem jkalexndr. The people on this forum are very helpful.

Bye, until next time I have a problem at least.
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