How To Correct Wrong System Date „Created“ And „Modified“

A correct ‚creation date‘ or ‚date taken‘ can be important if files should be listed in chronological order. Similarly, various applications demand a correct file date for further data processing.

But when and where is a file date set and why will it be changed again?

 

How To Correct Wrong File Dates

In this post you learn how easily you can restore the original modification and creation date of your documents, pictures, videos and audio files.

  1. Why Has The „Creation Date“ / „Date Taken“ Been Changed?
  2. What File Dates Do We Distinguish?
  3. How To Correct File Date “Created” and “Modified” And Restore Original „Date Taken“ / „Date Created“
  4. Simple And Fast Solution

 

1. Why Has The „Creation Date“ / „Date Taken“ Been Changed?

The creation date of files can often be changed unintentionally. Possible reasons are:

  • When copying files, Windows (as other operation systems do as well) modifies the original ‚creation date‘ to the date of copying.
  • When setting up a new PC,  the date of data transfer to the new hard disk will be set as the new ‚creation date‘.
  • After restoring a data backup, several backup programs accept the date when the backup was restored as the new ‚creation date‘.
  • When importing images from your digital camera or smartphone to your computer, the new creation date is the date of the data import and does no longer correspond to the original ‚date taken‘.
  • Where data is transferred via USB stick or via FTP etc., often the original creation date will not be adopted but the date of the data transfer will be set as new ‚creation date‘.

This change of the file date ‚Created‘ can have the unusal side effect that the new ‚creation date‘ of a file is more recent than the ‚modification date‘ provided by the system.

 

2. What File Dates Do We Distinguish?

The date taken (year / date / time) is created when a picture is taken or a video recorded.

The original creation date of Office documents and PDFs refers to the timestamp (year / date / time) when the file was created and saved for the first time.

The true date taken and the original creation date  will be also stored in the metadata of many files by many programs.  Especially with photos, the ‚date taken‘ will be stored by the camera software in the Exif metadata of the image file. This information embedded in the metada is not changed subsequently.

On the other hand, the date ‚Created‘ and date ‚Modified‘, provided by the operating system, do not have to correspond to the original creation and modification date as they may have been modified as stated in the examples above.

 

2.1 File Dates Embedded in Metadata Of Files

Date Taken (Original creation date in metadata of photos, pictures and partly videos and audio files)
Date Modified (Original modification date in metadata of photos, pictures and partly videos and audio files)
Content Created (Original creation date in metadata of documents)
Date Last Saved (Original modification date in metadata of documents)

2.2 File Dates Provided By The Operating System

Created (System provided date – may not correspond to original creation date for above mentioned reasons)
Modified (System provided date – may not correspond to original modification date for above mentioned reasons)
Accessed (System provided date of last access)

 

 

3. How To Correct File Date “Created” and “Modified” And Restore Original „Date Taken“ / „Date Created“

For most files (photos, videos, audio files, PDFs and Office documents) the original creation date can be viewed and verified in the metadata.

1. Right-click on the corresponding file within Windows Explorer and select „Properties“ from the context menu. In the tab „General“ the dates provided by the operating system are shown and do not necessarily correspond to the original creation and modification dates:

 

File Properties General View
System provided information in context menu „Properties“

 

2.   In the tab „Details“ of the file properties the correct ‚date taken‘ (example JPG image file) and the original creation date ‚Content Created‘ (example document) are displayed.

File Properties "Details"
Example Document

File Properties "Datails"
Example JPG Image File

4. Simple And Fast Solution 

Of course, it is laborious and time-consuming to manually verify the metadata of each file for correct file dates, especially if the file dates of several files are wrong.  There are several software tools available which enable to change the file date of multiple files simultaneously. But there is no sense to change the modification and creation date to one certain date if the file dates of multiple files have been changed by copying them. The original creation dates of these copied files are different. Therefore, the wrong file dates of each file have to be corrected individually by restoring the original ‚creation date‘ / ‚date taken‘.

And that is exactly what the software tool File Date Corrector can do for you. The program for Windows enables to correct the file dates of complete folders at once and to restore quickly and easily the original creation date of documents (Microsoft Office, Open Office etc.), photos, videos and audio files.   Restore Original Creation Date and Modification Date With File Date Corrector

File Date Corrector reads the correct ‚date taken‘ and original ‚creation date‘ from the metadata of each file in order to correct the date ‚Created‘ and date ‚Modified‘ provided by the operating system.

The software File Date Corrector can be downloaded and tested for free. The trial version displays the proposed corrections in a preview.  A brief introduction of the program is provided by the following video: Wrong File Date? How To Restore Original Creation Date Of Files. For more information about the software please visit the product website: https://www.infonautics-software.ch/filedatecorrector .

Do you have any questions about File Date Corrector or on how to restore the original file date? Please let us know and contact us via email at support@infonautics.ch. We look forward to hearing from you.

How To Correct Wrong File Dates

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