When a file path with \0 after is provided in the entry PendingFileRenameOperations of the registry key KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager, Windows is supposed to delete this file at next restart.


However, Windows 8.1 64 Enterprise does not delete the file or files. A simple test was carried out with a simple text file in a folder in Desktop. The file has not been deleted.


Some say six hex 0's must be added after the name to denote delete. Others say just the name and path are sufficient. MoveFile.exe is supposed to schedule the file for deletion correctly. And this is true. MoveFile.exe does schedule the file for deletion when "" is used as a second parameter. PendMoves.exe confirm this.


REG QUERY "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager" /v PendingFileRenameOperations /s also confirms this.


However, after a restart, the file is there and has not been deleted although the official Microsoft documentation says the file must be deleted.


Thank you kindly.


Hi Steven,

This issue is more complex than what we usually handle here. We can wait for other Community members to reply on this thread and provide you the most appropriate assistance. In the meantime, kindly answer the questions below:

  • Do you only experience this issue on this particular machine?
  • Are you trying to upgrade or install an application using MSI?
  • Are you using the PendingFileRenameOperations key to cleanup leftover files from the install?
  • Were you able to delete files using this registry key in the past?
  • Have you made any changes to your machine before experiencing this issue?
  • Are you using any registry backup tool?

We can refer you to our TechNet forums once the questions above are addressed.

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Question Info

Last updated August 5, 2020 Views 12,965 Applies to: