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Anyone know of a way to delete files from an NTFS filesystem when you get "the file or directory is corrupted or unreadable". This isn't a file which is in use, I think it is genuinely corrupted, and I can't seem to get rid of it. BTW suggestions to reload my hard drive from scratch are not necessary, I'm looking for a utility or patch process which can do this in place. Thanks.

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4 Answers 4

At the command prompt, try chkdsk /f d: (change drive letter)

This should fix the NFTS structures and allow deletion later.

This is the same as using the GUI error checking tool in "properties"

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If renaming/moving from the command line in Windows (to avoid Explorer filename restrictions) doesn't work, and if you don't want to fiddle with Linux trying to read it (not that a third-party implementation is necessarily going to manage a confused file system any better, but it's been known to help in other situations), then you'll need to do a surface scan of the disk, which is pretty much the same thing that a full format would do before it wiped it anyway. (In the volume properties, it's "Error-checking" in the Tools tab.)

Then you'll either have it magically fixed, the readable part of the file dumped somewhere, or confirmation that the disk is dying. In any case, make sure all your data's backed up.

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If this is your c: drive then you won't be able to run chkdsk because the drive is mounted. You could try booting from your install disk, pressing F6 to enter the recovery console then following the instructions to run chkdsk on your c: drive from there.

Microsoft have published an article about accessing the recovery console, http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307654

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Sometimes undeleteable NTFS files can be delete after rebooting Windows, even without running chkdsk.

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