THE “FOLDER WITHOUT A NAME” PROBLEM

Some days ago I created a new Virtual OS at my laptop using VirtualBox but VirtualBox freaked out and created the folder structure for the Virtual OS within a folder without a name:

After the installation of the OS, VirtualBox started to complain about not finding settings or virtual hard drives. Surprisingly enough it turns out that Windows does not like a folder without a name. Windows does not let you do anything like changing the name, saving files to it or removing it through the Windows explorer UI. I don’t really understand how VirtualBox was able to create the folder and add 7 GB of data to it without getting errors from Windows?

Removing the folder!

As I said the folder contained a lot of data and the OS inside the folder was useless. My precisions SSD disk shouldn’t have a useless 7 GB folder, so I needed to remove it! I thought that my good old friend PowerShell would help me, so I told PS to recursive remove the parent folder:

PS started to complain and told me that the path was a junction point and that I needed to force delete the folder, so I tried that:

Nothing happened it just stood there blinking and my laptop started to get slow. After some quick checks at the Task Manager I saw that PowerShell used 40 – 100% of my CPU and almost all of my 8 GB of memory. I killed the PowerShell process and got my resources back.

Now I didn’t really know what to do and I stared to search the web. As it turns out Windows has a short alternative folder name so I needed to get that name. PowerShell made me disappointed the last time so I started CMD.exe and ran the dir command:

Oh nice, the folder seemed to have some kind of random short name so I used that and removed it the rmdir command:

Whohoo! The freaky folder was gone and I got my 7 GB back :). Maybe this helps someone else with the same problem, otherwise I just shared the start of my Saturday morning. I’m a forgiving person and five minutes later I were back using VirtualBox and PowerShell again. Now I can go back to coding in my new virtual OS!

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