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NTFS Drive - Zone.Identifier Files - How to delete them?

Posted on 2012-03-20
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Last Modified: 2012-03-20
Hi,

I have a user with a bunch of Zone.Identifier files on their local HDD under Win XP Pro which I cannot delete.

I have searched and read-up on what they are, and how they arose, and I understand all that, but the advice on getting rid of them seems to be, that you have to remove the associated original file to get rid of the Zone.Identifier files.

The user has already deleted all the original files (including the zip file that started it all), but the Zone.Identifier files are still there.

So, the situation now is that they have a folder on their HDD (D:\Temp\Z\) that contains nothing but Zone.Identifier files and sub-folders that themselves contain nothing but Zone.Identifier files.

There are no associated files on the user's drive.

I can rename, but not delete the folders.

I have tried (all as the user and subsequently as administrator):

 - deleting them from Windows Explorer (permission denied)
 - renaming them from Windows Explorer (permission denied)
 - deleting them from a command prompt (The system cannot find the file specified)
 - Changing the file attributes from a command prompt (Unable to change attribute)
 - Changing the file permissions (Right Click - Properties does not even give a 'security' tab)
 - Changing the file permissions on the top (D:\Temp\Z\) folder to 'Everyone' / 'Full Control' / Forcing all child objects to inherit permissions.
 - Changing ownership of the top level folder to me (administrator) and deleting, but still permission denied

How can I get rid of these files?

Thanks,

Alan.
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Question by:Alan3285
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4 Comments
 
LVL 32

Accepted Solution

by:
_ earned 500 total points
ID: 37745763
Try Safe Mode.

If that doesn't work, I would get, burn, and boot from one of the Linux OSs that run from a cd/dvd.

Knoppix is well thought of around here:
http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index-en.html

A list of others if you want to experiment:
http://distrowatch.com/dwres.php?resource=cd
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LVL 12

Author Closing Comment

by:Alan3285
ID: 37745811
Bit of a 'head slapping' moment here :-)

No idea why  didn't think of just booting into Linux to delete them - I guess I got wound up in the fact that there MUST be some way to do it from Windows, and its annoying that I don't know how!

Anyway, booted into Linux Mint 12 (we're an 'Ubuntu house', transitioning to LM now), and all gone in 10 seconds.

Thanks,

Alan.
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LVL 12

Author Comment

by:Alan3285
ID: 37745812
Wish I'd tried Safe Mode first, just to see if that worked, but too late now.

If it happens again, I'll try that first next time to test out.

Alan.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 37745879
>> Bit of a 'head slapping' moment here

  : D

Yeah, sometime Windows can be really stupid about whether files are really "in use" or not.
There is probably some kind of leftover piece of a program somewhere, that is still making Windows think those files still need to be protected.
Since Safe Mode only runs the minimum required stuff,  you can sometimes get around it that way.

Thanks for the Points.   : )
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