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I am trying to delete some files from a rescued user's profile folder from previous installation of Windows 8. I'm talking about the files that are normally located at C:\Users\Someone. I have copied this user's entire profile folder to drive D and then re-installed Windows. Now after installing Windows, I have taken out all the good stuff from this folder and I just want to get rid of the rest. But Windows is giving me some crap about source path being too long.

There are three files it has problems digesting. Their names begin like this...


The rest of the characters in the file names are just gibberish (or at least to me they are). Here, let the screenshots speak for themselves.

a b c d

  1. What are these files?
  2. Why is Windows having problems with them?
  3. That checkmark kind of looking icon for the file seems to resemble the Symantec Norton icon. Norton Internet Security is installed on the computer. Could that be what's causing this?
  4. What are those crazy characters that look like a dollar sign, what do you call them? And what's the one that looks like an equality sign but with dots on top and bottom?
  5. How can these characters be legal for a file name in Windows?

I have seen a few methods for deleting files and/or folders with too long search paths here on SU. So I will try some of those. Hopefully one of those methods will get rid of them. I'm just wondering what these files are and why this is happening to begin with.

Delete - Method 1

The first method failed... e

D:\Rescued user profiles>rmdir /s "support"
support, Are you sure (Y/N)? y
support\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Store\Cache Medium IL\0\0-Namespace-htt
000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000?00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000.dat - T
e file name is too long.
support\AppData\Local\Packages\WinStore_cw5n1h2txyewy\AC\Microsoft\Windows Stor
- The file name is too long.
support\AppData\Local\Packages\WinStore_cw5n1h2txyewy\AC\Microsoft\Windows Stor
 The file name is too long.

D:\Rescued user profiles>

The AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Store\Cache Medium IL part reveals that they are Windows Store cache files. It's funny how they (MS) appropriately chose a naming scheme and file name length so that they cannot be removed should one ever need to.

Delete - Method 2

I tried the method posted over here and it worked. This is the recipe.

mkdir empty_dir
robocopy empty_dir the_dir_to_delete /s /mir
rmdir empty_dir
rmdir the_dir_to_delete

Complete CMD dump can be found here.

share|improve this question
Looks like a cache or application data for a Windows Store application. In either case because its a cache file it doesn't need to be restored. You will have to use Robocopy or a Powershell script to delete the files. The odd names are from deleting files that seem were already deleted. – Ramhound Mar 4 '14 at 12:34
Yeah I noticed the dat extension. So they are either cache or application data files for some Windows app? Notice how it says So in that case they must be from some Metro style app, rather than a full desktop application. Although we don't use Metro apps, or the Windows Store. – sammyg Mar 4 '14 at 12:38
Windows 8 comes with default Windows Store applications already installed. Like I said the data is likely a cache file, hence the wierd names, Unlocker can also force delete files. – Ramhound Mar 4 '14 at 12:44
Yup, you are right. Just read AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Store\Cache Medium IL. – sammyg Mar 4 '14 at 12:46
Can you tell me what those funny characters are? They cannot be represented in CMD but are rather replaced with question marks. – sammyg Mar 4 '14 at 12:47

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