I should have included the fact that none of these files are visible from Windows Explorer, and only show when looking for *.tmp at the command line. AND they don't seem to be possible to delete.

I thought perhaps someone has encountered this particular issue.

Looking for tmp files and trying to cleanup. Windows 2003 server critically low on the C partition shows these.

I have seen nothing regarding what they might be, or do. Can they be eliminated? Or reduce the space they consume?

Directory of C:\WINDOWS\assembly\NativeImages_v2.0.50727_32\Temp

06/15/2012  10:34 AM    <DIR>          .
06/15/2012  10:34 AM    <DIR>          ..
04/18/2011  10:17 PM    <DIR>          ZAP1.tmp
04/18/2011  09:41 PM    <DIR>          ZAP11.tmp
04/19/2011  03:10 AM    <DIR>          ZAP121.tmp
04/18/2011  11:37 PM    <DIR>          ZAP12F.tmp
04/19/2011  12:27 AM    <DIR>          ZAP14F.tmp
06/10/2010  08:50 AM    <DIR>          ZAP1561.tmp
06/10/2010  08:50 AM    <DIR>          ZAP1567.tmp
01/11/2012  10:27 PM    <DIR>          ZAP182.tmp
05/10/2012  02:06 PM    <DIR>          ZAP193D.tmp
05/10/2012  02:24 PM    <DIR>          ZAP1A8F.tmp
04/18/2011  09:31 PM    <DIR>          ZAP1D4.tmp
04/18/2011  09:31 PM    <DIR>          ZAP1FD.tmp
04/18/2011  11:41 PM    <DIR>          ZAP20A.tmp
08/26/2009  11:24 AM    <DIR>          ZAP2225.tmp
04/19/2011  03:19 AM    <DIR>          ZAP230.tmp
08/26/2009  11:29 AM    <DIR>          ZAP2301.tmp
08/26/2009  11:30 AM    <DIR>          ZAP231E.tmp
04/18/2011  11:42 PM    <DIR>          ZAP236.tmp
04/19/2011  12:32 AM    <DIR>          ZAP23A.tmp
04/18/2011  10:01 PM    <DIR>          ZAP2CB.tmp
04/18/2011  10:03 PM    <DIR>          ZAP2EF.tmp
11/03/2006  10:57 PM    <DIR>          ZAP3.tmp
04/19/2011  12:36 AM    <DIR>          ZAP30A.tmp
04/19/2011  12:38 AM    <DIR>          ZAP32F.tmp
08/09/2008  12:43 AM    <DIR>          ZAP37D.tmp
04/19/2011  03:45 PM    <DIR>          ZAP399.tmp
04/18/2011  10:08 PM    <DIR>          ZAP3CF.tmp
04/19/2011  12:42 AM    <DIR>          ZAP412.tmp
04/19/2011  12:43 AM    <DIR>          ZAP42E.tmp
04/19/2011  03:49 PM    <DIR>          ZAP46C.tmp
04/19/2011  03:52 PM    <DIR>          ZAP497.tmp
04/19/2011  03:56 PM    <DIR>          ZAP574.tmp
08/09/2008  01:26 AM    <DIR>          ZAP579.tmp
04/19/2011  03:56 PM    <DIR>          ZAP587.tmp
04/19/2011  03:59 PM    <DIR>          ZAP5AE.tmp
04/19/2011  04:03 PM    <DIR>          ZAP68D.tmp
04/19/2011  04:04 PM    <DIR>          ZAP6A8.tmp
04/19/2011  03:02 AM    <DIR>          ZAP8D.tmp
04/18/2011  09:05 PM    <DIR>          ZAP97.tmp
04/18/2011  11:32 PM    <DIR>          ZAPA1.tmp
04/18/2011  09:22 PM    <DIR>          ZAPA5.tmp
08/08/2008  05:28 PM    <DIR>          ZAPA9.tmp
06/21/2011  06:42 PM    <DIR>          ZAPAA31.tmp
06/21/2011  07:34 PM    <DIR>          ZAPAB53.tmp
10/06/2010  04:55 PM    <DIR>          ZAPBF01.tmp
04/24/2008  03:46 AM    <DIR>          ZAPD4B7.tmp
07/21/2012  01:50 PM    <DIR>          ZAPF4.tmp
               0 File(s)              0 bytes
              49 Dir(s)   2,042,834,944 bytes free

3 Answers 3


Since others have answered the "are they safe to delete" part, let me just throw in a little suggestion about why you can't delete them. (I too, would suspect they're safe to delete, as is generally the case, but we really have no way of being sure.)

When you say you're unable to see C:\WINDOWS\assembly\NativeImages_v2.0 in Explorer, it makes me believe your files and folders settings aren't set to view hidden or system files, which would be why you don't see them in explorer. It also makes me believe you're kinda new to to this Windows Admin thing, so let me suggest that rather than poking your way around the CLI or Explorer doing God-knows-what, grab a copy of WinStatDir, put it on your server, and get a graphical report of what files and folders are consuming the most space, as well as a listing you can sort by criteria that will be useful in your quest to free up space.

You can even delete the files and folders through the WinStatDir GUI, rather than Windows Explorer's. Though, I'd advise caution too, because it seems like you're not quite comfortable/experienced enough on a Windows server to know what's relatively safe to delete, and what's not. Using the native file compression feature on your system disk might be a safer alternative to deleting stuff, if it's not already being used (but of course, compressing the files will impact performance negatively, so bear that in mind).

Alright, gonna add (since you're not the newbie I thought you were) that if they "won't delete" with any other method, you can always try the rd (AKA rmdir) command from the Windows CLI. Use /s and it will delete the directory targeted, all subfolders and files. (So don't target C:\WINDOWS\assembly\NativeImages_v2.0, but rather the .tmp directories under it. I've only ever seen it fail to delete what I pointed it at when a file was locked for being in use.

Quick and dirty page on rd's use and the available switches.

  • @HopelessN00n I actually do have windows set to show hidden and system files, that is why I am puzzled about not seeing them. attrib shows them as not hidden either, but explorer fails to show them. I will try the WinStatDir GUI you suggest, thank you
    – datatoo
    Jul 22, 2012 at 0:50
  • Not as bad as I thought, then. I assume you've cleared out any $NT_Uninstall[blah]$ folders in %systemroot%, then? That's always a quick win, assuming you'll never need to uninstall the corresponding Windows Updates. (So maybe just clear out the oldest ones.) Jul 22, 2012 at 0:53
  • Yes, because the C partition has so little left I had to. I am RDPing into this machine and have to be careful I don't kill my access
    – datatoo
    Jul 22, 2012 at 0:59
  • Well, if it's that desperate, I'd also consider checking the hidden system folders under the RECYCLER/Recycle Bin (with the CLI, not Explorer). You know, the ones that look like GIUDs. (Are GUIDs?) Anyway, working on old Windows Servers, I've found a lot of the time that files and folders get "stuck" in there - the Recycle Bin shows as empty, but actually checking from the CLI (or a utility like WinStatDir) can show a lot of junk in there that didn't actually get properly deleted for one reason or another. Jul 22, 2012 at 1:05
  • That is one area I have often wondered about clearing. If it can fix things, why is it so unaccessible? Thanks again for the ideas this machine was to 40MB of a 12gb C partition, which seemed big in 2004
    – datatoo
    Jul 22, 2012 at 1:13

All but one of them are not even from this year. I would consider them safe to delete, except possibly for the last one which has today's date.


How are we supposed to know?
Seriously -- they're temp folders with meaningless names, we don't know what's in them, so how is anyone supposed to know what they're from or if they can be deleted?

A basic system management tip though - any temporary folders that are older than the last time the system was rebooted can probably be deleted. If you want to be more aggressive, 30 days is often a good maximum time to keep temp data around, particularly if the programs that are creating them are bad about cleaning up after themselves.

  • sorry @voretaq7 I assumed the C:\WINDOWS\assembly\NativeImages_v2.0 directory might provide a clue. I am unable to see that directory in Windows Explorer and am not able to remove any of these from the CLI. I thought perhaps someone had experience with this particular directory
    – datatoo
    Jul 21, 2012 at 21:55
  • I've not found anything solid about that directory (there is a StackOverflow question which seems to imply it's related to ActiveX, but it might be used by other things as well)...
    – voretaq7
    Jul 21, 2012 at 22:02
  • thank you, I have searched and viewed everything that comes up on a few different search engines as well.
    – datatoo
    Jul 21, 2012 at 22:04

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