I hope someone can help me with this cause its driving me crazy!!

I have a number of folders in the c:\Windows directory that I cannot delete (they all start with lots of underscore ______) and also 4 shortcuts in the quick link bar and cookies in the cookies folder that also cannot be removed (I assume that they are all linked!).

The error message that I get is:

Cannot Delete File: File System Error (1026)

I also get the following message when trying to empty the recycle bin:

Cannot Delete ______~1: Cannot Find the Specified File

Any ideas??? Is there any more info that you need??



Have you tried a Google search for that message?

Just type the exact error message in quotes there, and you may come up with a solution on your own.

Hi, Thanks for the reply

I have tried that but all of the articles (including the MS ones) relate to recycle bin issues and moving broken shortcuts and do not tell me how to actually delete the folders or files!


I've tried the re-boot in safe mode but this hasn't helped!

Still no ideas!!!


I've tried the re-boot in safe mode but this hasn't helped!

Still no ideas!!!


Try rebooting to MS-DOS and delete it from there...

Cool!!! where do you get these stuff??? google?

Yes !An Amazing tool that Google :)

Thanks for all the help guys - unfortunately I still havent been able to sort it.

I looked at the article (its the same as the MS TEch Net one) and that allows me to empty the recycle bin but not to clean out the other files that are on the system - and whenever anything is put into the recycle bin I have to use the Disk Cleanup tool to empty it!!

I'm really puzzled now!!:rolleyes: :confused:

Deltree.exe is always my ultimate deleting tool... it has never failed me yet... why don't you give it a try...

Dear Simonsl8er, I have just joined the Daniweb forum site because I am having exactly the problem you reported in April 2004 about file system error 1026. I will try to post a new thread. However, I wonder if you ever solved the problem of how to delete files/folders? One respondee suggested that you try it in MS-DOS mode. Did you try that and did it work?

Colin 4228

Hello everyone

This error is caused when you have a very long directory name (I don't remember the exact number of characters!).
This problem is not related to recycle bin, in fact; it is related to the Windows File System. I've got this problem on a USB flash memory yesterday and I had to re-format it to solve the problem.
But if your files are REALLY necessary; you can check www.microsoft.com for the specific update (I'm not sure if it is still there!!) or you can use the simple powerful method: FORMAT!

If you have any further questions I'll be glad to help!

I encountered this problem when trying to uninstall Norton Antivirus. Most of the Symantec files were deleted (but I had to download and use the Norton removal tool to do this, a simple uninstall did not hack it) but certain strange named Symantec files remained which my system refused to allow me to delete. With advice, I tried to get rid of them by starting in MS-Dos mode and this worked for all but two of them which, even in MS-Dos, the system would not delete. Eventually, for other reasons as well, I was forced to re-format the hard drive and re-build it from scratch. Thus I regret I never got to the bottom of the error 1026 problem in my case. It was a great nuisance.

Reading back down this thread, I see that one contributor advised using deltree.exe. I found this on my Win98 SE system disc (not on the start-up floppy) and out of interest copied it and attempted to run it. I just got a black window, and the message "required parameter missing". It will not run further on my 98SE machine, and I have no idea what the missing required parameter may be.

Many thanks to the latest contributor for his (her) comments, but in common with that contributor I ended up re-formatting the whole file system and never managed to get rid of those troublesome files.

If this happens again, I will for the benefit of this forum document my problem better (full file names etc.) so that perhaps a way may be found to delete troublesome files without a complete system wipe.

Colin 4228