Why is the file name too long for the Desktop now but not earlier?

Posted on 2012-09-01
Last Modified: 2012-09-10
Why is the file name too long for the Desktop now but not earlier?

Before I did the factory recover of my Windows 7 Home, and immediately upgraded to Windows 7 Ultimate, I could have all existing folders and files on the Desktop. But now, after having done the factory recover, seven of these folders are not accepted because their folder names are too long. Perhaps it has to do with that I entered my name when I set up the user account on my reinstalled OS (earlier, the user account did not bear my name but was assigned with a default name which I think was shorter than my name).

So I wonder if there is any way to have these seven folders placed on my Desktop somehow, whithout having to change their folder names?
Question by:hermesalpha
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    Are the folder names very long? You cannot have folder names longer than 256 characters.
    LVL 2

    Assisted Solution

    Your previous Windows 7 maybe already have a hotfix (patch) that addressing long file name issues which you've lost when you did a factory reset.
    The solution is to update your Windows 7 first and then try to copy your files again.

    If the above doesn't work, download this hotfix/patch and apply it manually :

    Good luck.

    LVL 70

    Accepted Solution

    As suggested above, the first thing I'd do is apply all windows updates, just to be sure this isn't a simple case of an update not being installed.

    But if that's not the case, then most likely you've simply created a longer name string by using a longer user name.     It's unlikely that's the case, however, if you're simply trying to name a few folders -- the path to your desktop is fairly simple ...


    ... or only about 18 characters plus your username.    So unless you're using VERY long folder names -- or have nested folders several layers deep -- it's unlikely you're exceeding the path length.    Hopefully simply doing all the updates will resolve this.   It is, however, with nested folders and descriptive folder and file names, fairly easy to exceed the overall limit -- so that may indeed be what's happened.

    If you want to confirm that path length is the issue, download and install PathScan [ ]

    Scan your backup drive that has the folders now and see how deep they are.    If they are indeed very close to the limit, then that's indeed the issue.

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