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Old 04-26-2007, 10:30 PM   #1
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Default Can't Delete File

I have a file that I can't delete. It won't move, copy, rename. I can't change the properties, it won't delete in safe mode or cmd, and it won't open in any program. I've scanned it with various virus, adware, spyware, and malware programs including norton and mcafee, but none of them thought is was a threat. I don't know what it is and I'm afraid it could harm my system. The last thing I want to do is format my drive and start clean, but I will if I have to.
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:34 PM   #2
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Relax you probably won't have to reformat. A couple questions first:

1. Do you have administrator privileges on your account?
2. What's the name of the file?
3. What's the directory of the file?


It may be denying you access to delete it for the following reasons:

1. It's a system critical file
2. You do not have privileges to remove it
3. It is currently in use by a program

However if any of those three things are not true, try deleting it through the command prompt. Go to: Start > Run. Then type in CMD and press enter.

In the command prompt navigate to the directory where the file is. To do this first make sure that you are starting in the root directory. The first line of text should have a directory listed to it, it may say just C:\> or it may say C:\Random Folder>. If the latter is true, type in "cd.." without the quotation marks. Continually type that in and hit enter until you are at the root C: directory. To navigate to a different directory type in cd then the directory name. For example if the file was in C:\Program Files\Unreal Tournament\Noobs you would type this in:

cd "Program Files"\"Unreal Tournament"\Noobs

You put quotation marks around directories that have spaces in the name. Once you are in the correct directory type in:

del "File Name"

It should then be deleted. If you are having trouble navigating using the command prompt, tell me what directory it is in and I will tell you exactly what to type in.
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01010010011001010110010001100010011001010110000101 11001001100100
010011110111010101110100

There are only 10 kinds of people in this world. Those who can read binary, and those who can't.
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:36 PM   #3
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

I am the admin, the file name is like 100 characters long, and it's on the desktop.
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:48 PM   #4
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Okay so try and rename the file, but instead copy the file name. This way you wont have to type it all out.

Go to start > run
Then type in cmd and hit enter.

Then type this into the command prompt. <enter> means to press enter. Italics are description of what you are doing.

cd.. <enter>
cd.. <enter>
cd.. <enter>
This is just to make sure you are at the root directory

cd C:\"Documents and Settings"\"Your windows xp username goes here"\Desktop <enter>
Here you are telling the CMD prompt to navigate to the desktop

del "file name here"
Here you are telling the cmd prompt to delete the file. Hit control 'v' to paste the file name that you copied earlier
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:52 PM   #5
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

You know in command prompt you can autocomplete filenames by pressing tab, right??
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:54 PM   #6
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Quote:
Originally Posted by freestyler105 View Post
You know in command prompt you can autocomplete filenames by pressing tab, right??
Now I do :-P. Also right click the file and make sure it's not read only under properties. That would be the simplest of explanations now that I think about it :-D
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:55 PM   #7
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

When I right click, the drop down menu appears. I'm sure you've seen a normal one, but mine only has:

Preview
Print
Edit with Fireworks
Preview
Open With
Send to

Notice it's missing a few key elements. This only happens with this file. I opened the properties menu with alt+double click but trying to rename it gave me the error message "cannot read from the source file or disk". I did try to delete via CMD, copying the file name letter by letter, but it said it couldn't find the file. Maybe it's not there and I'm just losing my mind.
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:58 PM   #8
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Can i rename via CMD?

Edit:
Not RO.
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:00 PM   #9
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Yah you type ren "file name here"

Do what he said. Type the first couple letters of the file then hit tab and it will autofinish it for you.
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:02 PM   #10
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

I tried the rename and delete with the tab, neither worked. This time it did say the file name or extension was too long, so I know i'm not going crazy.
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:05 PM   #11
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Quote:
Originally Posted by stuckinthecave View Post
I tried the rename and delete with the tab, neither worked. This time it did say the file name or extension was too long, so I know i'm not going crazy.
When you hit tab did it correctly spell out the file your trying to remove? If so it shouldnt matter how long the file name is, it should delete it.
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:07 PM   #12
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Maybe I missed it, but where did you get this file from?..
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:10 PM   #13
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

yes it did spell it correctly. I'm tired of this stupid file.
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Old 04-26-2007, 11:12 PM   #14
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

I'm not sure where it came from. It found it this morning on the desktop, takin' up space.
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Old 04-27-2007, 12:12 AM   #15
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

I figured it out, in case anyone else has this problem. Open CMD, go to the dir of the file, type erase *(extension, example .mp3). It'll will delete all of the files of that type (Ex. all mp3 files) so move the files you don't want deleted beforehand. Thanks for all of your help and time!

Edit:

Ex.

erase *.png
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Old 04-27-2007, 02:36 AM   #16
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

I would have just done it from safemode, would have been quicker.
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Old 04-27-2007, 02:44 AM   #17
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

he said safe mode didnt work
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Old 04-27-2007, 02:46 AM   #18
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Ah yeah, didnt see that. I have just got up
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Old 04-27-2007, 03:52 AM   #19
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Default Re: Can't Delete File

Heh. Why would a *.png do that?
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