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I have folders that start with a $, like $Recycle.Bin, and folders that end with $, like C$. Are these network shares? Then again often I see files that otherwise look like dupes of files in the same folder, but they have a dollar sign somewhere in the name and they are greyed-out. What are those?

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The $ sign indicates that the folder is hidden. See here for more information.

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That article does not explain the $ in $Recycle.Bin though (which doesn't seem to be a hidden share) –  Karan Oct 22 '12 at 20:40

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