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Ok, as soon as I have put up this page about "read only" files I started getting enquiries about it.

This is the extra info you are all asking for.

The question seems to be "What are read only files".

The answer to that one is simple. "Read only files" are any files which have their attributes set to "read only".

To make it simple see the below screenshot:


as explained, I have right clicked on the text file you see and from the next window I chose Properties (which is the last one at the bottom) and the properties window came up, -as you can see from the above pic-

If you look at the pic you will see the two white boxes next to "Read-only" and "Hidden".

It means that the file has no attributes. To change its attributes you just tik the one you want and then click on OK.

Your file might have different attributes. If your file is a "read only" file it will have the "read only" box CHECKED.

You can uncheck it, click on OK and the file is not a "read only" file anymore.

What does this mean? It means that the file can be changed. What does this mean? Ok from the beginning (of what I know).

I haven't read this anywhere, I just worked it out for myself but I think it is to do with security.

Somewhere else on this site I talk about the HOST file. That file is quite important as far as security goes and if an attacker was to change it, they could do damage.

So that file is set to "read only". This way nobody can change it. If you want to hange it you must perform the above operation, eg. right clik it go into its properties, untick the thingy then press ok.

Then you will be able to open the file, modify it, save it (this time the file will save) and then you should change it back to "read only".

There are many other read only files all over the computer and I have found that any file you get from a CD is also read only. This I guess it is because you can't modify files that are stored in a CD because CDs cannot be changed.

So when you rip a CD into your hard drive all its files will be set to read only.

You can select all files then do your right click trick and change attributes of ALL files in just the one go, just this time you'll be asked an extra thingy, just read the prompt and follow accordingly.

Which brings me to the below text, some clever reader pointed out that a solution to the below problem would be to set every single file to non "read only" before moving them. You can do that in the one big go as I explained.

The downside to this is that you won't know which file is set to read only and which file isn't so when you finish your move you will have all files with the same attributes.

But by simply copying them as I describe, you don't mess with the file's attributes. This might be useful in some cases.

While I am at it, I'll add that the "hidden" attribute is used to hide a file that might be used by the operating system, another security measure.

Btw someone asked me why won't I open up comments like blogs do and the answer to that is that I can't take suckers very light so since there's an a$$ hole every two minutes I'd get all that to cloud my mind and mess up my day.

I am doing this just to add my humble bit to the pot of collective knowledge out there and I just don't need any grief out of it.

True, I am losing some positive entries but I'd rather that than having a silly remark linger in my mind for two days. I also don't have time to moderate the comments.

So that's it, I answered the few questions I got. Below is the original text that prompted me to put up this page.


This is my way of dealing with the "are you sure you want to move the read only" message box.

It is not a definite fix but a workaround it, without installing this or that file manager.

I am sure you have had to deal with this scenario:

You want to move a large amount of files from one disc to another, maybe 10gigs and you know it'll take maybe 40 mins.

That's ok, you cut and paste it then leave it alone.

You then come back an hour later just to find that the file moving job has stopped on the dreaded "are you sure you want to move the read only" message.

So what do I do here?

When I remember to do it I simply COPY and PASTE. NOT CUT and PASTE.

This way it won't ever stop.

Then when it has done it, I DELETE the original lot of files.

 It can't be done if you don't have the necessary drive space to have a duplicate of all the files while the transfer is being done but it's better than no solution at all and most people nowadays do have tons of space :)

That's it, hope it helps someone.



Home > dealing with the "are you sure message box"