Deleting files with VERY long file names


A

Alf

I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will not delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I have tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing the
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by just clicking on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with old DOS commands--still get an error message re length
of the files.

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Alf
 
Ad

Advertisements

P

Paul

Alf said:
I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will not delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I have tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing the
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by just clicking on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with old DOS commands--still get an error message re length
of the files.

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Alf
The best way to fix it, is to rename the file first, so that
it uses a shorter name. Then it can be deleted.

I tested that using the PERL programming language (ActiveState
PERL is a free download). I was able to create a 259 character
pathname, which explorer wouldn't delete (threw the kind of error
you're seeing). By running my script a second time, I was able
to use the PERL "rename" command, to change the name to something
shorter. In my testing, it seemed there was one particular
length that other programs can produce, that Explorer cannot
delete. I'd say that is a pretty long standing bug, in terms
of a lack of performance on Microsoft's part. The OS should
be able to do at least as well, as any other utility can do.

What it boils down to, is selecting a tool that doesn't use
the standard way of doing things. And thereby avoiding the
bug/shortcoming.

An example someone suggested in the past was "MP3rename", but
when you look at some utilities like that, their function and
interface are pretty far removed from your request for
a simple tool to delete that file. Using PERL is
equally far fetched - I used that environment, just to do
some quick testing, and it wasn't an attempt to write my
own tool or anything. Just to see "what happens at 259".

Paul
 
C

Clog_-_wog (®)

Alf said:
I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will not
delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I
have tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing the
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by just
clicking on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with
old DOS commands--still get an error message re length
of the files.

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Alf
Use Unlocker
http://www.filehippo.com/download_unlocker/

[q]
Cannot delete folder: It is being used by another person or program
Cannot delete file: Access is denied
There has been a sharing violation.
The source or destination file may be in use.
The file is in use by another program or user.
Make sure the disk is not full or write-protected and that the file is not
currently in use.

Unlocker can help! Simply right-click the folder or file and select
Unlocker. If the folder or file is locked, a window listing of lockers will
appear. Simply click Unlock All and you are done!
[q/]
 
G

GlowingBlueMist

I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will not delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I have tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing the
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by just clicking on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with old DOS commands--still get an error message re length
of the files.

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Alf
When in DOS or the Command Prompt as Windows 7 calls it did you try
deleting the file with the long name by using the short name as shown
with a dir /x while in the directory with the bad file?

The short name shown with the /x option will be a form of the long name
but limited to 8 characters.
 
A

Andrew Rossmann

article said:
I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will not delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I have tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing the
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by just clicking on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with old DOS commands--still get an error message re length
of the files.

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Alf
It's possible tht total folder name + file name is too long? If so, you
can temporarily try MOVING the folder the file is in to the root or some
other very short name, deleting or renaming the problem file(s), then
moving the folder back.
 
A

Alf

I didn't try Unlocker (even though I use it) because I had to be able to right click on the file to bring up Unlocker in the context menu and couldn't do that (error sound). I did, however, try
Unlocker on the folder. When it didn't find anything locked it gave me the option to delete. I tried it and voila! Thanks!

And thanks to the other posters that responded.

Alf
 
R

R. C. White

Hi, Alf.

As suggested by GlowingBlueMist and Andrew Rossman, you can use the Command
Prompt and those old DOS commands to delete those files.

First, navigate (CD for Change Directory) to the directory where those files
reside. If your foldernames are too long for CD to do it in one fell swoop,
you can CD one level at a time to get there.

Then remember the /x switch with the Dir command. This lists the SFN (Short
File Name) for any file whose LFN (Long File Name) does not comply with the
ancient 8.3 filename rules. (For those reading along, even a
single-character filename can be an LFN if that single character is one that
does not comply with the 8.3 rules.) The SFN will be in a column before the
LFN, but only for LFNs that don't also qualify as SFNs.

If your folder has too many files to comfortably use dir /x for the whole
list, then use a wildcard to shorten the list; it should still work. This
command produces the SFN for both Program Files (PROGRA~1) and Program Files
(x86) (PROGRA~2) in my Windows folder:
Dir pro* /x

Then just use the Del command with the SFN: del PROGRA~1

If you need to get rid of a folder, rather than a file, remember to use rd
(Remove Directory) rather than Del.

As usual in a Command Prompt window, just type any command followed by /? to
see a mini-Help file listing the switches and parameters available with that
command.

RC
--
R. C. White, CPA
San Marcos, TX
(e-mail address removed)
Microsoft Windows MVP (2002-9/30/10)
Windows Live Mail Version 2011 (Build 15.4.3508.1109) in Win7 Ultimate x64
SP1 RC


"Alf" wrote in message

I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will not
delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I
have tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing the
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by just
clicking on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with old
DOS commands--still get an error message re length
of the files.

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Alf
 
C

Clog_-_wog (®)

Alf said:
I didn't try Unlocker (even though I use it) because I had to be able to
right click on the file to bring up Unlocker in the context menu and
couldn't do that (error sound). I did, however, try
Unlocker on the folder. When it didn't find anything locked it gave me the
option to delete. I tried it and voila! Thanks!
Anytime, sir!
 
D

danielfird

Alf wrote on 02/13/2011 05:20 ET
I have picked up a few files with very long names that Windows 7 will no
delete (error message indicating that file names are too long). So far I hav
tried (1) rebooting, (2) moving or changing th
files names--will not work because I get a Windows error sound by jus clickin
on the files, and (3) using CMD to try to delete the files with old DO
commands--still get an error message re lengt
of the files

I would appreciate any suggestions. TIA. --Al


Posted with NewsLeecher v5.0 Beta
Web @ http://www.newsleecher.com/?usene
Hi all, I have been suffering from accessing, managing and even renaming file
that have more than 255 characters over a long time. I have tried various way
but failed. Then I have searched this problem in internet. Then I have found
solution. This software is very easy to use. Named Long path Tool. To use th
program all you need to do is to download this program online and save all th
settings to your computer. This program is compatible with Windows NT, 2000
XP
Vista and Windows 7. you can find it from longpathtool(dot)co

best regard
DanielFird
 
J

Jeff Layman

Alf wrote on 02/13/2011 05:20 ET :
Hi all, I have been suffering from accessing, managing and even renaming files
that have more than 255 characters over a long time. I have tried various ways
but failed. Then I have searched this problem in internet. Then I have found a
solution. This software is very easy to use. Named Long path Tool. To use the
program all you need to do is to download this program online and save all the
settings to your computer. This program is compatible with Windows NT, 2000,
XP,
Vista and Windows 7. you can find it from longpathtool(dot)com
I have seen this issue with XP. I can't remember how I resolved it, but
it definitely didn't require a third-party utility. I seem to remember
that a bigger issue was with CDs or DVDs, which would not accept file
names longer than 64 characters.
 
K

Ken Springer

Alf wrote on 02/13/2011 05:20 ET :
Hi all, I have been suffering from accessing, managing and even renaming files
that have more than 255 characters over a long time. I have tried various ways
but failed. Then I have searched this problem in internet. Then I have found a
solution. This software is very easy to use. Named Long path Tool. To use the
program all you need to do is to download this program online and save all the
settings to your computer. This program is compatible with Windows NT, 2000,
XP,
Vista and Windows 7. you can find it from longpathtool(dot)com

best regards
DanielFird
Possible workaround, thinking outside of the norm......

Create a folder in the root directory of a drive. See if you can move
the files to the new folder. If you can move them, not copy or create a
shortcut, maybe then you can delete them.

--
Ken

Mac OS X 10.6.8
Firefox 10.0.2
Thunderbird 10.0.2
LibreOffice 3.5.0 rc3
 
W

Wolf K

I have seen this issue with XP. I can't remember how I resolved it, but
it definitely didn't require a third-party utility.
The issue appears to be the length of the path. I resolved it two ways,
both tedious, but both successful.

a) Set Explorer to show the folder tree in the left pane. Rename folders
from the top down until total filename is short enough. The rename the file.

b) Use command prompt to navigate through folder levels as above,
renaming folders as you go.

I also structured data folder trees to be as a short as possible. Word
proc programs propose filenames based on the first two or three lines of
the document. I never accept these, they are always longer than they
need to be. I suspoect that the files OP "picked up" were docs with such
file names. Another example of programmers making things too easy for
the user causing unintended consequences.

Me too, this limitation still exists, and it's absurd.

HTH
Wolf K.
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

Alf wrote on 02/13/2011 05:20 ET :
Hi all, I have been suffering from accessing, managing and even renaming
files that have more than 255 characters over a long time. I have tried
various ways but failed. Then I have searched this problem in internet. Then
I have found a solution. This software is very easy to use. Named Long path
Tool. To use the program all you need to do is to download this program
online and save all the settings to your computer. This program is
compatible with Windows NT, 2000, XP,
Vista and Windows 7. you can find it from longpathtool(dot)com
best regards
DanielFird
If you get into a command window, you can run the directory command

dir /X

this displays the short (i.e., 8.3) filename of the items in the
folder.

You can cd \ to get to the root, then if the folder you want is also
called (let's say) shorty&1, you can cd shorty&1 to get there.

One at a time, you can work your way down to the lowest folder and
delete the file using its short name, such as

del tiny&1

You may be able to get to the directory in question in a command window
more directly. In Windows Explorer, Shift-Right Click the folder name
and choose "Open command window here".

Note: I *think* that's a standard Windows thing, but maybe I have an
add-on to do it. In that case Shift-Right Click is not good advice.
 
R

Rob

The issue appears to be the length of the path. I resolved it two ways,
both tedious, but both successful.

a) Set Explorer to show the folder tree in the left pane. Rename folders
from the top down until total filename is short enough. The rename the
file.

b) Use command prompt to navigate through folder levels as above,
renaming folders as you go.

I also structured data folder trees to be as a short as possible. Word
proc programs propose filenames based on the first two or three lines of
the document. I never accept these, they are always longer than they
need to be. I suspoect that the files OP "picked up" were docs with such
file names. Another example of programmers making things too easy for
the user causing unintended consequences.


Me too, this limitation still exists, and it's absurd.

HTH
Wolf K.
Use Unlocker - Google it. This will allow you to delete the files.
 
B

Bob I

Another method is to map a drive letter to a folder just above the
problem file. To do this share the folder to everyone and then map the
folder as a network share. Disconnect the drive when done and remove
sharing permission. Saves a lot of messing about with renaming
 
S

Stan Brown

Hi all, I have been suffering from accessing, managing and even renaming files
that have more than 255 characters over a long time. I have tried various ways
but failed. Then I have searched this problem in internet. Then I have found a
solution. This software is very easy to use. Named Long path Tool.
Really not necessary, though I'm glad it worked for you.

Find the folder in question in Explorer, Shift-Right-click and select
Open Command Prompt here. Type "dir /x" (no quotes) to reveal the
short file names next to the long file names. Then "del" (no quotes)
and the short file name.
 
D

dweebken

Alf wrote on 02/13/2011 05:20 ET :
Hi all, I have been suffering from accessing, managing and even renaming files
that have more than 255 characters over a long time. I have tried various ways
but failed. Then I have searched this problem in internet. Then I have found a
solution. This software is very easy to use. Named Long path Tool. To use the
program all you need to do is to download this program online and save all the
settings to your computer. This program is compatible with Windows NT, 2000,
XP,
Vista and Windows 7. you can find it from longpathtool(dot)com

best regards
DanielFird
Try the PathTooLongTool... from http://www.pathtoolong.com/
It's free to try or $19 to buy.
It finds long paths as well as gives you the option to copy or delete
the files.
 
J

Joerg Jaeger

Really not necessary, though I'm glad it worked for you.

Find the folder in question in Explorer, Shift-Right-click and select
Open Command Prompt here. Type "dir /x" (no quotes) to reveal the
short file names next to the long file names. Then "del" (no quotes)
and the short file name.
That seems to work well. I think you can most likely solve most problems
with the shell.
Just like in Linux.
From what i tried it looks like Windows names the first 6 letters, then
a ~ and a counting number with extension.


--
ACCESS DENIED...

/\_/\
____/ o o \
/~____ =ø= /
(______)__m_m) el cato
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

That seems to work well. I think you can most likely solve most problems with
the shell.
Just like in Linux.
From what i tried it looks like Windows names the first 6 letters, then a ~
and a counting number with extension.
Yes, that's correct or close to correct, AFAIK. Still, the safest thing
is to use dir /x in a command window, so as not to accidentally use the
wrong name. Dir /x shows both names, which makes correct identification
easy.
 
Ad

Advertisements

J

J. P. Gilliver (John)

Bob I said:
Another method is to map a drive letter to a folder just above the
problem file. To do this share the folder to everyone and then map the
folder as a network share. Disconnect the drive when done and remove
sharing permission. Saves a lot of messing about with renaming
[]
Does SUBST no longer work in 7? (It works in XP; I think XP tries to
dissuade you from using it, but I haven't experienced any ill-effects,
provided you know you're using it.)

Mapping drive letters - and SUBST if available - are (possible)
solutions to the problem of too long a name including the path; if the
path is not involved, then use of the short name is better.
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Similar Threads


Top