Just looking for thoughts/ideas on this odd issue I had come up today.
One of my users has two files on his desktop that he can’t delete. Both filenames are giberish with a “.” at the end, with no file extension. If you try to delete, rename, copy, or move the file, you get “Unable to read from source file or disk”. File size is 0. I tried using Hijack This to delete the files on startup, but no luck. No errors from Hijack This, but the files are still there.
Googling has turned up the following fixes, none of which have worked.
Try to delete in Command Prompt, but put \?\ at the beginning of the file name (so del “\?\C:\Documents and Settings\user\Desktop\filename.” I get “Unable to find” the file, same as when I use the del command without \?\ at the beginning.
Set it to open with Notepad and then open it. You get the error “This file does not exist. Would you like to create a new one?”. Click Yes, type something, then save. It’s supposed to overwrite the broken file with a new one that you can then delete. But when I tried it just created another copy on the desktop with the same filename (which shouldn’t even be possible). I can delete the copy I make this way, but still can’t delete the original.
Open a Command Prompt, then open Task Manager. Kill explorer.exe (so the Start button, task bar, etc disappear). Use Alt-Tab to get to your open command prompt window, and delete using the del command. This is supposed to bypass Windows Explorer’s file indexing, which is theoretically causing the problem. I still get the “unable to find” error when I try this.
Open Notepad. Go to File - Open, browse to the file, then right-click and choose Delete. This is also supposed to bypass Windows Explorer’s file indexing. This gives me the same “unable to read from source” error as when I try to delete from the desktop.
I’m starting to think the only way we’re getting rid of it is to reinstall Windows, which of course he’s not in a big hurry to do since this is mostly just an annoyance right now. This is driving me nuts. Any ideas?