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  1. #1
    Silver Lounger
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    Folder Limitations

    Hi All,

    The other day, I was copying files from my HD to a floppy disk. Some of these files had very long names. Before not too long, I got a cryptic Windows message - something along the lines of "cannot create directory entry". I'm guessing that this meant that some limitation had been reached. I know it was not the storage limitation of a floppy disk - all the files I had copied so far added to about 300K.

    So it must have been either the number of files in the folder (probably not since this was only about 50-60) or the number of characters occupied by the file names in the folder. Having ruled out the total storage and the number of files in the folder, I'm guessing it's the last item.

    I was able to make a sub folder (although I couldn't rename it from New Folder, which was OK anyway) and add more files to this subfolder until the problem occurred again. Back up to the parent, create a new folder, and keep going.

    So the questions are: what is the limit that I ran into? A total-character limit for the file names of the files in the folder or something else? What is the value of this limit? Clearly it is different for HD vs floppy since the files came from 1 HD folder. Lastly, if the file names all had some common prefix, is there a way to rename the files in one shot to remove the prefix? (I think I've seen this somewhere but wouldn't remember where - maybe some Explorer replacements?)

    TIA

    Fred

  2. #2
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    Re: Folder Limitations

    If I remember correctly there is a limit of 255 files that can be place in a Root Directory. I remember a few years back that I was copying a a bunch of files from a CD to the harddrive and mistakenly copied them to the Root Directory (C and ran headlong into the problem you have described.

    HTH
    RDH
    Ricky Hicks
    Microsoft MVP
    Birmingham, Alabama USA

  3. #3
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    Re: Folder Limitations

    <hr>is there a way to rename the files in one shot to remove the prefix?<hr>

    There is indeed. Have a look at the three renamers available on my site. I use RName-it, where you can do all sorts of automatic things with prefixes, suffixes, extensions and numbering.
    A program written for Windows 3.1 and still working wonderfully well in XPP. Brilliant.

    Click My Sig : Index - Renaming Files

    Rgds

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: Folder Limitations

    I'm not 100% sure about this but I have a recollection that the files will also be created with a DOS compatible name - e.g. "MyVeryFirstWord Document.doc" will be filed as "MyVery~1.doc".
    If you have many long-name files, all beginning with the same wording, the system could simply be running out of ways to label them.
    You could maybe check this by doing a DIR listing of what you have on a floppy from the command prompt or a DOS session, and see what is listed.

  5. #5
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    Re: Folder Limitations

    Thanks Ricky. But I only had 50-60 files in the root directory of the floppy disk when the problem started happening. In fact, I just checked the root directory of one of the floppies where the problem occurred: 44 items, including 2 subfolders.

    Fred

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    Re: Folder Limitations

    Leif,

    Good idea but no go.

    First, wouldn't there be the same problem on the hard drive, where I have a few hundred files that I was copying?

    But I did check out what you suggested. In the root folder, there were 42 files and 2 folders. Looking at the folder in DOS showed prefix~1.txt thru prefix~40.txt, a few prefix~n.htm [n ran from about 1-2] and the 2 folders. In subfolder "New Folder" (I couldn't even rename it but that didn't matter for my purpose), there were 51 files with the same kinds of names as above. In subfolder "New Folder (2)", there were 27 files; these were the last ones I copied from the HD - didn't bump into any limits here.

    When I looked at the DOS listing, it had the first 4 cols as DOS Name, size, date, time. It had a 5th col for the full name of the file. I'd think this has to be stored wherever info for files is stored for a folder. Therefore, I still think there's a limit as to the number of chars this area can store on a floppy - different than the limit on a HD. So if I rename the files to get rid of the prefix, I should be able to get a few more.

    I think I'll try MerC's suggestion and use his "renamer" to shorten the names. Then I can see if my above hypothesis is true.

    Thanks.

    Fred

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    Re: Folder Limitations

    Will give them a shot.

    See my response back to Leif on this thread for my approach to the problem using your renamers.

    Thanks.

    Fred

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    Re: Folder Limitations

    MerC,

    Downloaded ReName-It and it worked fine. Only comment I have on it was that it was not obvious how to refresh the list of files in the lower left corner. For example, after copying about 10 files into a new folder for a trial and using ReName-It to get rid of the prefix in the file name, I decided to move the rest of the files into the folder. But no apparent way to get the list of files to refresh. So I navigated to anothe folder and back - that solved it. Thanks much.

    Now for some statistics.

    Before using ReName-It, I was able to get 42 files into the root folder of a floppy. They all had fairly long names (longer than 8.3) with a prefix. After using ReName-It on the folder on my HD, I was able to copy 61 files to the floppy root folder. Whenever the directory file is full, I got the message "Cannot copy [file-name]. Directory or file cannot be created."

    For the 61 files, they took up:
    - 3,826 characters counting spaces only in the long file name, not spaces between fields from a DIR listing under DOS; this included 1 character per character
    ----in the DOS Name (almost all were 8.3) - this accounted for 666 characters
    ----for the size as characters (but is it stored as binary?)
    ----for the date and time as characters (binary?)
    ----in the long file name - this accounted for 1752 characters

    So it might seem that the root folder is allocated 4K bytes, even though there's a lot unaccounted for in the above.

    Fred

  9. #9
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    Re: Folder Limitations

    MerC,

    Thanks again for the tip on ReName-It. Used it some more just now.

    1 comment: it was not clear how to rename folders within a folder. I had pairs of files of the form:
    prefix-something_files
    prefix-something.htm

    the former was a subfolder for the latter containing the various jpgs, etc for the htm file. Easy enough to rename the htm file to delete the prefix- part. Wasn't clear how to rename the subfolder since they didn't show up in the selection area. Did any of the other 2 renamer's handle this?


    Fred

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