Zero byte files

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by bman412, Jun 24, 2008.

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  1. bman412

    bman412 Registered Member

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    I have these four files on my system partition's root drive all indicating 0 kb as their file sizes. The file names are AUTOEXEC.BAT, CONFIG.SYS, IO.SYS, MSDOS.SYS and can only be viewed when protected system files are not hidden.

    A scan with avira says the files are clean. Trying to upload online to virustotal for a 2nd opinon is futile since it seems the site doesn't handle zero byte files. Are these files safe?

    nLited XPSP3 OS btw with up to date windows patches.
     
  2. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    Yes. Whatever you do not do delete any of these files. They are required system files. You will have a non-functioning system without them. Any file that cannot be viewed without disabling protection is required. That should have been a clue.
     
  3. Seer

    Seer Registered Member

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    Never been a DOS user? These are leftover startup text files from old MS OSes. They can still be used if you have a need to emulate 16bit environment. They have no effect on 32bit OSes and you can safely delete them if you wish.

    Perfectly legitimate MS files, no need to worry.
     
  4. bman412

    bman412 Registered Member

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    TYVM n8!
    I had an inclination to just let them be. Just wanted to hear what the more knowledgeable folks here at wilders has to say.
     
  5. Seer

    Seer Registered Member

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    I had to test this claim so I deleted all four of them (on XP SP3) and rebooted. There are no side effects (as expected) and the files are not recreated.
    Unneeded stuff.
     
  6. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    That is not always true. Those files are recreated if there is a backup of them already. I've fried a system before by doing just that. They are hidden for a reason.
     
  7. Seer

    Seer Registered Member

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    n8,

    an example -

    On Vista the content of autoexec.bat is this -

    Code:
    REM Dummy file for NTVDM
    NT VDM -> DOS emulator.

    Care to try again? Well, I just did it...
     
  8. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    That may very well be the case with Vista, I wouldn't know though. I still use XP

    Vista = ME with a face lift

    Sorry...I'm all out of cookies :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  9. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    "Vista = ME with a face lift".......I think that may be the biggest insult I've heard so far to Vista:D
     
  10. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    A zero byte file is little more than a placeholder with a name. There is literally no content to them, nothing. So there is no harm that can come from them. They may be there for some reason, if something needs the filename to be there, but they are basically vapor. You can leave 'em there and forget about 'em for good....
     
  11. bman412

    bman412 Registered Member

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    Thanks everyone for the replies :D
     
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