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I have a strange situation on a hard-worn HDD. When I run chkdsk on it, I keep getting the message "Index Entries referencing file 841231 will not be validated because the file contains too many filenames" (for a few different numbers). I cannot seem to find any information anywhere on this error and what it means.

This is on Windows Vista 32-bit Business, a Thinkpad Laptop, and a HDD crammed full of files and programs with only a few percentage points of free space.

There is a snippet of help on MSDN and Technet at and which is less than useful. It says "try to break the file into multiple parts". Could this be an issue related to fairly big files, like 10 GB+?

Update: the files as documented in my own replies below do not have to be big to be problematic. It is something else that is going on. Also, if you want to run the MS tools to investigate the file system, remember to do so as administrator. Using UAC does not work.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

The article HOWTO: Convert CHKDSK NTFS MFT FRS "file number" into path suggests several methods of converting the file-number 841231 to a file-path. Here is one of them:

  • Download Microsoft's well-hidden diskedit
  • Unzip all into a directory and launch diskedit.exe
  • Select menu entry File->Open and enter the drive letter and a colon into the "Volume Name" field (C:) and click OK.
  • Select menu entry Crack->Backtrack NTFS FRS
  • Enter the HEXADECIMAL representation of the file number (either with or without the leading "0x")
  • It will pop up a little window displaying the full path of the file.

If this method doesn't work, there are two other methods in the article, using the trial versions of commercial products.

Once you have the file-path, you can delete it and redo the chkdsk.
If it's a system file, you'll have to get a good copy of it from elsewhere.

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I tried a few of the methods in the article, but for some reason none of them work. Diskedit refuses to mount the C: drive, and the Diskexplorer tool cannot list any disks in its selection interface. Maybe something happened in Vista that prevents these tools from working? – jakobengblom2 Jun 6 '10 at 18:06
Update: apparently, UAC prevents the tools from seeing the drives. Using "run as administrator" makes it work! – jakobengblom2 Jun 6 '10 at 18:07
For the record, the files that cause trouble are a set of LOCALE files from an installation of the CodeSourcery Sourcery G++ Lite for PowerPC/Linux. Weird. The files were not very big: 34 bytes, 233 kB, 62 bytes, 23 bytes. – jakobengblom2 Jun 6 '10 at 18:23
As this definitely answers the question "How to convert a CHKDSK file number into a path", I will not ask it again. However, I found a slightly different missive by presumably the same Ralph Clark on arstechnica earlier on that Christmas Day! (Timezones not checked!) And can now be found via the bottom of this page. – Mark Hurd Mar 31 '14 at 5:39

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