Trying to delete a directory that's not empty


New Member
I have a folder I've been trying to delete for some time but I am unable to. I am using cmd prompt and get the message " the directory is not empty". I know it's not empty but it needs to get deleted. Please help.

D:\>RMDIR /s m
m, Are you sure (Y/N)? y
m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m\m - The directory is not empty.

That's my mess. What can I do?


Extraordinary Member
Hi Terra101 and Welcome to The Forum.

You appear to have a file/folder that will exceed the "file length name" that Windows can cope with (I think its 256 characters).
1. Have you tried digging down through several "m" layers to see if its deletable, then work your way back up?
2. Download and install Unlocker 1.9.1 That should be able to remove it.
3. Download something like Puppy Linux, a "separate" system that will run from a CD. Through that, 99.99% of the time you can delete the undeletable in Windows as it isn't actually running. Just be aware that your drive letters will not be the same as what you are used to seeing.
4. Under NO circumstances download any (the only?) program that promises to remove files that have too long a name. That software is a scam that will dump an undeletable file/folder that you can't remove (see 3) without paying them some of your hard earned spondoolics.


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

I nothing else works do as Elmer said, and use a version of Linux.

I prefer Ubuntu, it will run from a CD or DVD and let you connect to the internet, back up and remove things and do the basic computer processes. I use it every once in a while when Windows won't let me move or remove something.

It also gives you the option of saving your data to disks another partition or an external drive, if you have some kind of major problem that won't let you boot into Windows.

Just download the .ISO and burn it to a disk using ImageBurn.

The Official ImgBurn Website

Download | Ubuntu

Use the 32 bit version even if you have a 64 bit computer, it's more universal.