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Fat32 Vs Ntfs-- File Permission Error Avast interferring with Word saves on FAT32 drives

#1 User is offline   herut 

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 01:00 PM

Well, I like thousands of other Word users am experiencing the 'File Permission Error' when I open a Word file on my flash drive, revise it, and then try to save the changes. It seems that various anti-virus app updates are causing this problem. But Avast says that this is only a problem (i.e. Word/Avast conflict) when saving to a FAT32 drive, but not a problem when saving to an NTFS drive. Since both of my Transcend 16Gb pen drives are formatted in FAT32 (but my HD is NTFS) should I re-format my Transcend pen drives to NTFS? I'm no techy, but I presume that any such re-format will wipe out my zillions of data files, right? Please advise! Thanks.
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#2 User is offline   coastie65 

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 01:56 PM

Hi and welcome to the forums. Unless there is a specific reason to do so, you should format your flash drive to NTFS. There are some things such as BiOS flashes that you need to format in FAT32, but for most common uses, it should be NTFS. Occasionally a file permission error is due to a formatting problem when the flash drive uses FAT or FAT32 formatting. You can change this by reformatting the drive to NTFS, although you should back up ypur files since formats delete all data.

Read more: Why Can't Word Complete a Save Due to a File Permission Error in Office 2007 and the Flash Drive? | eHow http://www.ehow.com/...l#ixzz2URuJBWSh

This post has been edited by coastie65: 26 May 2013 - 04:45 PM

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#3 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 02:09 PM

FYI, for the sake of avoiding extra writes to the drive, you should format the flash drive as FAT (or exFAT, though that's not as compatible) instead of NTFS.

This post has been edited by LiveBrianD: 26 May 2013 - 02:10 PM

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#4 User is offline   waldojim 

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 05:23 PM

I need to do some research on this, there is absolutely no reason that Fat32 should be creating a permissions problem. WHY? Because there are none. There are 3 options for FAT32 files, Read Only, System, or Hidden. Only the "read only" option has any effect here. Check to make sure your files are not tagged read only before continuing.

If that does not work, try this - temporarily disable your anti-virus. I would bet that this is more likely the problem than the file system on an external drive. As Brian noted, FAT/FAT32/exFAT are all much kinder to external drives. Most anti-virus software likes to write to alternate data streams on files as well - something not supported by FAT (thus saving you space!). Worth noting, is that it is quite possible that Antivirus has the file "locked" while you have it open, to prevent virus activity - since it has no ADS to write to.

I see many opportunities here for problems, most of which are NOT related to the filesystem. Sorry guys, but filesystems are generally NOT the culprit when something like this acts up. I would not suggest formatting a drive while you are having filesystem trouble. (Anyone here remember Stealth.B?)

EDIT: If Disabling AVAST fixes the problem, then get rid of AVAST and use Microsoft's free antivirus.

This post has been edited by waldojim: 26 May 2013 - 05:24 PM

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#5 User is offline   coastie65 

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 05:16 AM

View Postwaldojim, on 26 May 2013 - 05:23 PM, said:

I need to do some research on this, there is absolutely no reason that Fat32 should be creating a permissions problem. WHY? Because there are none. There are 3 options for FAT32 files, Read Only, System, or Hidden. Only the "read only" option has any effect here. Check to make sure your files are not tagged read only before continuing.

If that does not work, try this - temporarily disable your anti-virus. I would bet that this is more likely the problem than the file system on an external drive. As Brian noted, FAT/FAT32/exFAT are all much kinder to external drives. Most anti-virus software likes to write to alternate data streams on files as well - something not supported by FAT (thus saving you space!). Worth noting, is that it is quite possible that Antivirus has the file "locked" while you have it open, to prevent virus activity - since it has no ADS to write to.

I see many opportunities here for problems, most of which are NOT related to the filesystem. Sorry guys, but filesystems are generally NOT the culprit when something like this acts up. I would not suggest formatting a drive while you are having filesystem trouble. (Anyone here remember Stealth.B?)

EDIT: If Disabling AVAST fixes the problem, then get rid of AVAST and use Microsoft's free antivirus.



Yeah, the Anti Virus app could be an issue as well and I forgot to mention it. :P I remember Stealth.B :angry:
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#6 User is offline   LincolnSpector 

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 07:30 AM

Hi, herut, and welcome to the forums.

I'm not familiar with the 'File Permission Error' message, but I have a couple of comments on your situation.


The main reason flash drives come formatted in FAT-32 is backward compatibility. If you encounter an old, Windows 98 or ME PC, it will read FAT-32 but not NTFS. I'm not sure about the situation with Macs, but it could be an issue with some of them, as well.


And yes, formatting the drive will delete all of the files on it. But there's a simple solution: Copy everything on the drive to some other storage device--say, your PC's hard drive--then format and copy everything back.


In fact, you should probably do that even if you don't format the drive. Your post suggests that your "zillions" of files reside only on the flash drive. That's asking for trouble. You need to back that sucker up. First rule of digital life: Never have only one copy of anything.


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#7 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 09:11 AM

Macs can read NTFS, but not write to it.
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#8 User is offline   LincolnSpector 

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 08:38 AM

View PostLiveBrianD, on 27 May 2013 - 09:11 AM, said:

Macs can read NTFS, but not write to it.


That's still the case? Thanks for letting me know.

Lincoln
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#9 User is offline   smax013 

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 07:21 PM

View PostLincolnSpector, on 28 May 2013 - 08:38 AM, said:

View PostLiveBrianD, on 27 May 2013 - 09:11 AM, said:

Macs can read NTFS, but not write to it.


That's still the case? Thanks for letting me know.

Lincoln


You can get third party utilities that allow a Mac to also write to an NTFS drive (just as you can get third party utilities to allow Windows to read and write to a Mac formatted [aka HFS+] drive).

Macs will both read and write (and format) a FAT32 drive. And this is the big reason why most flash drives AND external hard drives come formatted as FAT32...allows you to use them with both a Windows computer and a Mac.
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