Delete the "undeletables"

By yclee ·
This problem is not about locked/shared/ etc. files, its about coding, so here is it:

I have a few files with non-printable characters tagged at the end of filename (truncated for char coding problem, I think), with files from servers running on foreign language systems, (my xp is Traditional Chinese version) how can I remove them?

explorer lists the entries with zero file size.
When I rename/delete them, explorer responds with "Unable to rename/detete file: cannot read source files or disks" (translation)

cmd and 4nt (yeah, quite handy) can display the filename, using TAB or wildcards, but totally deny the existance of such files.

I did delete some such files once, but I've forgotten the procedures, and the tools.

Can I get away with these kinds of problem all together?

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Ooh, on an NT filesystem.

by seanferd In reply to Delete the "undeletables"

I've done this before on FAT filesystems where one couldn't delete normally files with names which included extended characters. I think you could even use Edit to rename them.

I would suggest a low-level disk editor, but be very careful. You may also try to mount the drive offline from another operating system. I've never checked on filenames with extended characters from a Linux distro, but all distros I've used mount NTFS partitions easily. You could even try a DOS boot disk if you incorporate Avira's NTFS4DOS file.

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Any recommendation?

by yclee In reply to Ooh, on an NT filesystem.

I used to embedding a little extra non-printable character(s) in directory/file names to prevent "straying eyes" and/or accidental deletion (of course, in MS FAT FS, in linux, this won't work).

And now, it's NTFS, quite a new game. Do you have any low level disk editing tools that will do do job?

Will winhex do?

Any suggestion is welcome.


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try these utilities

by markp24 In reply to Delete the "undeletables"

I know you say this inst a locked file issue, but those tools may still help?

i have had files i could not delete, usually rebooting the server or pc will fix the issue, If you werent running foriegn language, i would tell you to run a Chkdsk on the system drive as well , because it sounds like you may have some MFT errors (Master file table , in Fat FS it was File allocation table)

but you may want to try Unlocker (

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by yclee In reply to try these utilities

They are gone!

unlocker is great, I alreay have a copy of unlocker my system, and I don't even know it has such capability.

Thanks for the help.

One question arise: your title is in plural form, it implies more than one tool.
Just out of curiosity, are there any?

Thanks again.

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Yes, i forgot to post the others

by markp24 In reply to Thanks


I am sorry i meant to post more but got sidetracked. there us "file assassin" and unlock me.

Im happy that helped:-)

see you around


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