How to change the “Drag and Drop” function in Windows 10

Drag and Drop

When it comes to Drag and Drop it’s easy to think of a variety of programs and features related to software and operating systems. In a Windows environment, in fact, this function allows you to use the mouse pointer to cut and paste (or copy and paste) a file simply by using the mouse pointer.

This is something we have been used to for some time and which, in many ways, represents one of the main strengths of window operating systems (now practically all of them).

Within Windows 10 however, not everyone knows that there is a little trick, which can be activated through the Registry, which allows you to change its behaviour.

How does Drag and Drop function on Windows 10?

By default, the behaviour of this function is quite simple. If you drag a file/folder onto a different drive, it will be copied. If the move occurs in the same unit, however, it is simply copy-pasted.

If this behaviour is fixed, in reality, there is a way to be able to force the operating system, differentiating the dynamics behind this operation.

Note will registry Editor is a powerful tool. If it is used improperly, it can make the system unstable or even unusable. By virtue of this, it is necessary to be extremely cautious when planning to make some changes to it.

However, this is a fairly simple trick, and following the instructions carefully, no problems should arise. For added security, you may find it useful to create a System Restore before continuing. In this way, if something goes wrong, you can simply “go back” and fix the situation.

Face to face with the registry editor

To change the default Drag and Drog behaviour, you need to edit two separate entries in the registry.

To proceed, open the registry editor as follows: in the search box on the taskbar, type the word regedit and then select the first (and theoretically unique) result that appears.

Alternatively, you can hold down or right-click the button Start, then select Run. Here enter the word regedit in the box You open and select OK.

Once the registry is open, on the left sidebar, look for this key:


Once located, right-click on the folder “*” And choose New> DWORD value (32 bit). So call the created value DefaultDropEffect.

Right-click on the key and select New> DWORD value (32 bit). Call this time like DWORD DefaultDropBehavior.

Now you will change that value to always copy or move files and folders as the default release behaviour. Exist four values that you can use with different effects. These are:

  • Default action (0): Allows Windows to decide whether to copy or move files and folders when you drag and drop the file/folder.
  • Always copy (1): the operation will always involve a copy of the file or folder.
  • Always move (2): the file or folder will always be moved to the destination.
  • Always create a link (4): A link to the original file or folder will always be created in the destination.

Double click on the new DefaultDropEffect value to open the edit window and enter a value of “1” or “2“, Depending on your needs. When finished, press OK to confirm the settings.

Then, go to the second key and repeat the steps from above, creating a new value DWORD (32 bit), renaming it DefaultDropEffect and setting the value to “1” or “2“.

At this point, another key must be sought, namely:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT AllFilesystemObjects

Right-click on the folder AllFilesystemObjects and select New> DWORD value (32 bit). Name the new DWORD DefaultDropEffect.

At this point make another right-click on the key and select New> DWORD value (32 bit). This time rename as DWORD DefaultDropBehavior.

Now, double click on the new value DefaultDropEffect, set the box Value data on “1” or “2, Then click OK to close the window.

You can finally close the Registry Editor and the changes will take effect immediately, you don’t even need to restart your computer.

By following these instructions, therefore, you can change the Drag and drop function to your liking. Remember that, of course, you can go back to the editor whenever you want to change the settings or to delete the changes made previously.

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