File Creation Date/Time Bug in Windows XP & Vista RRS feed

  • Question

  • Windows XP & Windows Vista (tested on 32 bit only) NTFS seems to have a bug with file creation dates/times when files are copied and then renamed.

    To replicate:

    1) create a file named 'test.txt'
    2) copy the file to the same directory -> 'test - Copy.txt'
    3) delete test.txt
    4) rename 'test - Copy.txt' to 'test.txt'

    After being renamed, 'test - Copy.txt' now assumes the original File creation date/time of 'test.txt' vice the actual date/time that 'test - Copy.txt' was created.

    How can you track if the file being accessed is the original one created or a copy?
    Friday, September 18, 2009 11:22 PM

All replies

  • I noticed the same thing.  In my code, I just manually change the creation date when the new file is created (in my situation, i am moving log.text into an archive and creating a new file; the new file was assuming the original creation date).  Hope this helps.
    Monday, July 5, 2010 11:02 PM
  • It looks like the problem is that Microsoft changed display defaults on us.  The "creation" date is really the date last copied or overwritten.  The "accessed" date is when you last inquired about the file's properties.   What most of us want is what they call the "modification" date - the date the file was created or last edited.  Confusing but that's the way it is.  "Creation" date (usually useless) is displayed by default.

    To change this display (must be done separately for each folder)

    use Windows Explorer to open a folder

    Click "view"

    Click "details" and "Choose Details" in the dropdown

    Clear the check marks on "date created" and "date accessed"

    Check "date modified"

    Click OK.


    Tuesday, May 17, 2011 5:41 PM
  • This is a dumb feature with a ridicolous philosophy documented in: kb172190

    • Edited by SilvermindToo Wednesday, June 19, 2013 8:23 AM Help found
    Wednesday, June 19, 2013 8:19 AM