Windows 10: One file left in Windows.old Solved

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  1. Posts : 9
    Windows 10 Professional
       15 May 2016 #1

    One file left in Windows.old


    After a successful install, I used Disk Cleanup to to remove windows.old - after a good while it finished, but the folder is still there, with one file still left:
    C:\Windows.old\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\point32.inf_x86_neutral_4c8bd195d4599eb3\ point32.sys
    the file also exists in the new windows folder which is similar but exactly the same:
    C:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\point32.inf_x86_4c8bd195d4599eb3\point32.sys
    The two files are identical, same SHA-256 hash.

    Initially the error was "Access Denied" so I took ownership of each folder and gave myself full control, after that, the error changed to "File is in use by another program" - Process Explorer could not find a handle to the file. Oddly, I can rename the file, which I did, to point32.xsysx but still cannot remove it. I know it's just one lousy 40KB file but it has me baffled.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    17 May 2016 #2

    Hi, suggest you boot from a live boot CD (there's one available here - first item in Software and Apps) or even a Win 10 disk or usb if you're familiar with using the command prompt, and delete these from outside Windows.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    17 May 2016 #3

    My experience may be different from yours, but...

    I also used Disk Cleanup to remove windows.old and it left the folder and some file in it. Being a neat freak I managed to delete the file and the folder. Then Windows 7 Backup and Restore, on the next and subsequent backups, claimed that the backup completed but there was a problem. It claimed that it could not find windows.old. So there was a reference to windows.old somewhere but I couldn't find the reference. So I created an empty folder windows.old in the expected place and backup got happy again.

    I think there is magic associated with the folder. It might be best to leave it alone.

    Good luck!
    -- Larry
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  4. Posts : 9
    Windows 10 Professional
    Thread Starter
       17 May 2016 #4

    dalchina said: View Post
    Hi, suggest you boot from a live boot CD (there's one available here - first item in Software and Apps) or even a Win 10 disk or usb if you're familiar with using the command prompt, and delete these from outside Windows.
    Thanks - Yep I get that, my main source of confusion is that I can rename the file but cannot delete it. Everything I know and have read says that rename and delete permissions are not separable. Also, if it is in use, as per the error I get trying to delete, how can I rename it ?
    Last edited by Devon Nullman; 17 May 2016 at 21:24. Reason: added
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  5. Posts : 1,875
    Windows 3.1 to Windows 10
       17 May 2016 #5

    because *.sys is a system driver....
    the registry is pointing to the windows.old as the current source for (and loaded ) the driver...

    booting from a non-windows environment will allow you to remove the windows.old folder and upon reboot windows will use the default location for the driver - which is also present in the driverstore..

    If you are able to rename the file in windows.old folder - do so - then reboot the pc - so windows will load the default location for that driver
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  6. Posts : 9
    Windows 10 Professional
    Thread Starter
       17 May 2016 #6

    larrymcg said: View Post
    My experience may be different from yours, but...

    I also used Disk Cleanup to remove windows.old and it left the folder and some file in it. Being a neat freak I managed to delete the file and the folder. Then Windows 7 Backup and Restore, on the next and subsequent backups, claimed that the backup completed but there was a problem. It claimed that it could not find windows.old. So there was a reference to windows.old somewhere but I couldn't find the reference. So I created an empty folder windows.old in the expected place and backup got happy again.

    I think there is magic associated with the folder. It might be best to leave it alone.

    Good luck!
    -- Larry
    Thanks for the reply - I use Acronis and Macrium, never used Windows Backup. I also cannot find any references to windows.old except that Process Explorer shows that explorer.exe has 3 handles to it. I tried setting up a cmd window with the delete command already there, killing explorer with task manager and hitting enter in the cmd window - access denied. Did you make a typo when you said that Windows 7 Backup and restore complained about windows.old ? It would seem that if there is a windows.old folder, them Windows 7 is gone ?? Have a look at my other response - "my main source of confusion"
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  7. Posts : 9
    Windows 10 Professional
    Thread Starter
       17 May 2016 #7

    Kyhi said: View Post
    because *.sys is a system driver....
    the registry is pointing to the windows.old as the current source for (and loaded ) the driver...

    booting from a non-windows environment will allow you to remove the windows.old folder and upon reboot windows will use the default location for the driver - which is also present in the driverstore..

    If you are able to rename the file in windows.old folder - do so - then reboot the pc - so windows will load the default location for that driver
    Tried that but it made no difference, still errored with same message.
    Click image for larger version. 

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      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    18 May 2016 #8

    This is common - you need to boot (as others say) from outside windows using eg live linux drive, ms drive, or something like Macrium Rescue drive (use its file explorer)
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  9. Posts : 9
    Windows 10 Professional
    Thread Starter
       18 May 2016 #9

    cereberus said: View Post
    This is common - you need to boot (as others say) from outside windows using eg live linux drive, ms drive, or something like Macrium Rescue drive (use its file explorer)
    I understand that but still wonder why I can rename the file to anything I want, but not delete it no matter what the name is changed to.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    20 May 2016 #10

    Devon Nullman said: View Post
    I understand that but still wonder why I can rename the file to anything I want, but not delete it no matter what the name is changed to.
    File will be owned by System, and not have delete rights.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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