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Article ID: 302093 - Last Review: October 31, 2006 - Revision: 4.2

This article was previously published under Q302093

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You may want to have files in an encrypted state by using the Windows 2000 Encrypting File System (EFS) feature, such as on a laptop computer, while still having the ability to copy these files in an unencrypted state to a central server to share with other users.

This article describes how to cause encrypted files that are copied to a particular Windows 2000-based computer to be stored on that computer in an unencrypted state.

Copy Encrypted Files to a Server

WARNING: If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.

To prevent EFS files from being copied to a server in an encrypted format, follow these steps on the destination server:
  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type regedit, and then click OK.
  3. Locate and click the following key:
  4. Delete the NtfsEncryptionService value from the FileSystem key.
  5. Restart the server.
This change has the following effects on the target server:
  • Files cannot be encrypted or decrypted with EFS on this server.
  • Client computers that copy EFS encrypted files to this server will cause the files to be stored in an unencrypted state on the server.
Note that under typical circumstances (when this registry change has not been made), you cannot copy EFS encrypted files to another Windows 2000-based computer that has not been trusted for delegation. You receive the error message "Access is denied. The source file may be in use." This behavior is by design.


To copy EFS encrypted files from one Windows 2000-based computer to another while maintaining the encryption state, the source computer must trust the destination computer for delegation. For additional information about trusting a computer for delegation and what this does, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
266080  ( ) Answers to Frequently Asked Kerberos Questions

  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 1
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 2
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
kbhowtomaster kbenv kbefs KB302093
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