This isn't that big of a deal, but as I would consider myself pretty knowledgeable of computers, I haven't seen anything like this, especially on Windows.

Today I discovered something really strange in a music folder. Basically the folder only contains 2 files, and they are both copies of the same .mp3

01 - Shotgun Mouthwash.mp3    |    8.60MB(9,023,311 bytes)  | Created 7/18/2018
01 Shotgun Mouthwash.mp3      |    8.60MB(9,023,311 bytes)  | Created 11/5/2018

I didn't create the copy, so obviously I just delete one right? This is where things get weird. If I delete the one with the '-', the other .mp3 file plays fine, but if I delete the one without the '-' then the first one refuses to play. Why is this?

Again, not that big of a deal, I'm actually going to re-download the file from the Play store and delete both versions to be same, I'm just really curious why this is as it's like some weird simlink or something between the files and I don't know what would have caused something like that.

EDIT: I'm on Windows 10 home

  • The Home Group Feature has been removed over security concerns, so Personal Folders are much more highly secured and generally inaccessible. If you have traditional folder sharing set up, use a neutral folder like c:\temp to hold these files and make sure "Everyone" has permission to the specific folder.
    – John
    Apr 3, 2020 at 18:29
  • I don't think this has anything to do with homegroups. I haven't used home-groups since around 2013 Apr 3, 2020 at 18:37
  • That may be true, but sharing personal folders has been highly secured since.
    – John
    Apr 3, 2020 at 18:46

1 Answer 1


This looks like a hard-link created with mklink.
To check that, you can use the Microsoft utility FindLinks.

FindLinks reports the file index and any hard links (alternate file paths on the same volume) that exist for the specified file. A file's data remains allocated so long as at it has at least one file name referencing it.

So, in your case, you could try

findlinks "01 Shotgun Mouthwash.mp3"

This should get you the info you need to estimate the situation.

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