NTFS File: "Size 0 bytes" but "Size On Disk 3.98 GB (4,282,056,704)"

  1.    24 Sep 2016 #1

    NTFS File: "Size 0 bytes" but "Size On Disk 3.98 GB (4,282,056,704)"

    I accidentally created a video file that had a colon in its file name. The command line utility that I used to create the video happily created the file without complaining, BUT now the filename became everything before the colon (not an issue) and the file itself is inaccessible. It shows up as size: 0 bytes, but when I look at the properties, it shows up a the proper size, with "Size on disk: 3.98 GB (4,282,056,704 bytes)".

    I tried to use various file recovery tools such as Recuva and Minitool Power Data Recovery, and they happily recover the file to a different drive, all 4GB of it, but the files they recover are in the same state -- still 0 bytes, but 4GB on disk.

    None of them seem to actually be accessible by any software.

    Has anyone had experience trying to restore a "0 byte" file that is still on the disk with an actual amount of bytes?

    I am technical so am not averse to doing some low level disk editing if someone pointed me in the right direction.

    Thanks in advance.

    Scott Bernstein
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    25 Sep 2016 #2

    Hi, I would try examining the file from a command prompt, outside Windows e.g. from SHIFT + left click restart and wend your way through the lengthy sequence and a restart to a command prompt.

    You may be able to delete it that way, perhaps by using wild cards and 8.3 format as necessary.

    Also try this search:
    deleting 0 byte file

    Lots of interesting results which may help.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  3. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 9,888
    10 Home x64 (1809) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       25 Sep 2016 #3

    dalchina said: View Post
    You may be able to delete it that way, perhaps by using wild cards and 8.3 format as necessary.
    I think Scott may want to rename it rather than delete it. Perhaps there's now no way to source another copy (with a valid name for a change). Renaming may well be possible from a command prompt by wildcard or 8.3 names. It may also help if it's first copied to a USB that doesn't use the NTFS format (you may need to use exFAT to get past FAT32's 4GB file size limit).

    But probably the easiest way to rename it would be to boot from a Linux Live USB and do it from there.

    Afterthought: If you can copy the file to a FAT32/exFAT drive, it's a lot easier to manually edit the FAT file structure than it is for NTFS. This thread may give some ideas:
    Last edited by Bree; 25 Sep 2016 at 13:08. Reason: afterthought
      My ComputersSystem Spec


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