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#1 fixit10101

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 01:37 AM

Mike,
In the May 26, 2004 newsletter you had a little paragraph under Tips on deleting index.dat files. I ran across this article (or story) by Sarah Lane on TechTV's screensavers newsletter on deleting index.dat files-there are quite a few-using a command prompt. I think every subscriber to Spyware info should see this. I used to use a third party .dat remover called System Security Suite (3s) but it was a pain. This method (TechTV) is built into XP and does a much faster and safer job of eliminating the junk. Hope this helps somebody, anybody, everybody.
yours truly, Jim

link: http://www.techtv.co...3668551,00.html

#2 sasquit

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Posted 10 June 2004 - 06:22 PM

Jim,
I'm interested in deleting the index.dat files. When I clicked on your link, however, I was taken to the TechTV site with current (June) dates. From a Google search, I learned Sarah Lane's Screen Savers article on using Windows XP to delete index.dat files appeared April 15. Unfortunately, TechTV does not yet have an on-line archive, and I cannot locate this article using Google.

Do you happen to have it in some form?

Regards,
Stro

#3 morcheeba

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Posted 11 June 2004 - 02:39 PM

http://www.techtv.co...3668551,00.html :

Even if you regularly clear your Internet History, Temp files, and cookies to keep ordinary snoops at bay, you're overlooking a very important detail: index.dat files. These hidden files contain information about your IE surfing history and your Outlook activity. On tonight's 'Savers, I'll tell you a simple way to uncover and clear 'em out manually.


Microsoft claims index.dat files cache webpages you visit to help speed up the loading time in Internet Explorer. A lot of folks disagree, and there are a few conspiracy theories floating around about what index.dat files are really for. I'm not really worried because I know an easy way to get rid of them.


Come out, come out wherever you are!


Index.dat files aren't only hidden, they're system files. Even if you select to show hidden files in your folder options, they remain unseen. To track down index.dat files, you need to know where to look.


File names and locations depend on which version of Internet Explorer you have. Assuming you run IE 4.0 or above, the file names will be "index.dat."


In WinXP, here's where you'll usually find them.


C:\Documents and Settings\username\cookies
C:Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\History
C:Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files

Clean house


I like to think we all learn more about Windows each time we get our hands dirty, and you'll have an easier time clearing out index.dat files manually than downloading a third-party program to do it for you.


Restart your computer in Safe Mode with Command Prompt. (Press F8 on startup and choose Safe Mode With Command Prompt.)


Log on as administrator. Enter your password.


Once you reach the command prompt, type "CD\" (no quotes) and hit Enter to get to your root directory.


Type "del index.dat /s" (no quotes) and hit Enter to erase all files named index.dat on your computer.


Type "shutdown -r" (no quotes) to restart your computer normally.

Your index.dat files will return once Windows boots up normally again, but they'll be empty! Have fun hiding your dirty little secrets. ;-)
Sarah


Originally aired April 15, 2004
Modified April 16, 2004

#4 Guest_Guest_danny_*

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Posted 13 June 2004 - 01:16 PM

so this is what I dont understand. The idex.dat file. Okay...so we cant just delete when we are in windows. But can we just open it up, delete its contents and save it. If the contents are gone, nothing can be tracked right? Why do we need to mess around in dos, and make things tricky for those of us in windows XP or have an NTFS file system? Surley we could do that in windows?

#5 Mike

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Posted 15 June 2004 - 03:25 PM

Some people can. I've never been able to do it myself. If it works for you, go for it. If not, the other methods will work.
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#6 Guest_Guest_guest_*

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Posted 27 June 2004 - 06:36 PM

heres a link for a cmd. at windows startup to delete index dats http://www.markusjan...et/eienbid.html under index dats. solution

#7 Guest_Guest_jon_*

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Posted 27 June 2004 - 08:57 PM

If i do what morcheeba said, than the next time my computer runs, will everything work normally? Will any of my previous interent files be accessible anymore?
Thanks for all the help

#8 bif

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 01:27 AM

:wave:

I use that method and it works just fine for me. XP, IE6 all updates/patches/service paks.

One thing, though, there are many more index.dat files than you think!!!

When you type in this command: del index.dat /s
It lists all the files and their paths that are being deleted. I'm guessing that there are around 10 of them. I've never actually counted, but it fills the window!!!

Here's a link to a third party utility suite: Index.dat suite

:D

#9 Tuxedo Jack

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 08:03 AM

If you're on XP/2K and have an NTFS filesystem, you can make a second Administrator-level account.

Log in as the second account and delete the index.dat files on the first account.

Since it's Administrator level, you won't have any problems.
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#10 Guest_Guest_jon2000_*

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 11:06 AM

Will my computer still run the way it did before , like will i still be able to use internet explorer normally? I just want to make sure that nothing wrong happens that will ruin my computer.
Thanks for all the help

#11 Tuxedo Jack

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 11:58 AM

It'll run fine.

I've been doing that since Windows 98 (first edition). Nothing's ever happened; Windows will just create a 1-cluster size index.dat file and start building it again (1 cluster being 16K on FAT32 or 4KB/2KB/1KB/512 byte on NTFS).

<edited for spelling>

Edited by Tuxedo Jack, 28 June 2004 - 11:59 AM.

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#12 Guest_Guest_lonewolf_*

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 04:51 PM

Just wanted to add, (for the really paranoid) i don't think any index.dats deleted with either 3S or Index.dat suite are deleted beyond recovery. They can still be recovered with certain recovery software. To delete them beyond recovery (or as close as your gonna get without smashing and buring your hard drive) you need to overwrite the free space on your hard drive. You can do this with a few different programs. One being Eraser. You can get this free program here: http://www.heidi.ie/eraser

#13 bif

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 10:37 PM

:wave:

I wonder if you can put 'em through the Spybot shredder?

#14 WinHelp2002

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Posted 30 June 2004 - 06:46 AM

bif: I wonder if you can put 'em through the Spybot shredder?

Yes you can ... works just fine (see below) this also includes the method described by " Tuxedo Jack"
How To: Delete the Internet Explorer Temporary Internet Files
http://www.mvps.org/...02/delcache.htm

For those paranoid users:
Once you delete the browser cache files in Windows, this removes all traces of the "tracks" in the "index.dat". The tracks are replaced by "XXX". The only line that still exists is "Client UrlCache MMF Ver 5.2".
Mike
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#15 Deke40

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Posted 30 June 2004 - 04:07 PM

This works in W98SE.

Go to C:\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5

Highlight the Content.IE5 folder and delete it. Go to Recycle Bin and empty it. You will get a popup saying the file couldn't be deleted. Just close RB and it will be gone the next time you look in there.

If your are feeling curious do the following:

First go to DOS and at the prompt type in the following commands:

CD\WINDOWS\TEMPOR~1\CONTENT.IE5(This will also be .IE5 even if you have installed IE6.)
EDIT /75 INDEX.DAT

You will be brought to a blue screen with a bunch of binary.

Press and hold the [Page Down] button until you start seeing lists of URLs. These are the sites you have visited. When your done looking go to File>Exit. If you don't have mouse support in DOS then use the [ALT] and arrow keys.

If you just want to see all the index dat and history and such download WinSpy and it show all of them.

http://www.acesoft.net/winspy/

For more info on index.dat go to fxxxmicrosoft.com. Just enter the correct letters for the x's that belong to that common f word.

#16 Guest_Guest_*

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Posted 04 July 2004 - 04:30 AM

just a thought... if you globally delete all Index.Dat files, too bad if a proggy happens to use a file called index.dat.

What I mean is, lets same a games uses their own file index.dat. It would have nothing to do with windows.

When deleting, be sure of what your deleting (particularly in Dos). If not, you might need to learn how to undelete!

#17 Guest_Guest_*

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Posted 21 July 2004 - 05:07 AM

I have a method of deleting index.dat while still logged in. The problem, of course, is that explorer.exe itself (the desktop and taskbar) keeps these files open. So shutdown explorer.exe, delete the file, and restart explorer.exe! (Works on Win2K, I presume also on WinXP):

- Close Internet Explorer and any third-party apps that use IE functionality
- Save any files you're working on, just in case
- Open a command prompt
- Close explorer via the Task Manager (Ctrl-Alt-Del, Task Manager, go to Processes tab, highlight explorer.exe, End Process). Your taskbar and desktop icons will disappear.
- In the command prompt, navigate to \Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5, and then del index.dat.
- Go back to Task Manager, File/New Task (Run...), and run explorer.exe. Your Windows desktop will reappear.

#18 Guest_Guest_*

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Posted 19 August 2004 - 03:01 AM

Hello Everyone - I need advice! :huh:

INDEX.DAT – I run Windows ME and can’t find all my index.dat files. The index.dat file on temp internet files isn’t there but my cookies index.dat file is there and has a size of 32K. The ones I can find are 32K in size and have been that size from new.

I have two queries

1. If they’re not growing beyond 32K are they still storing data?

2. – How can I delete them in safe mode using DOS using the del command (Step by step instructions ((PLEASE)) – I am a newbie :wub:

Please Make My Day
:bounce:

#19 WinHelp2002

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Posted 19 August 2004 - 04:47 AM

Guest,

1. If they’re not growing beyond 32K are they still storing data?

No they are not as that (32) is the default size.

How can I delete them in safe mode using DOS using the del command

How To: Delete the Internet Explorer Temporary Internet Files
http://www.mvps.org/...02/delcache.htm
That article includes the "DOS method" for WinMe
http://mvps.org/winh...cache.htm#WinME
Mike
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#20 Guest_Guest_*

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Posted 20 August 2004 - 04:34 AM

Thanks for your help WinHelp2002 :)

I’ve also done a bit of research on deleting INDEX.DAT files and came upon this very useful piece of writing from www.microsuck.com/

Click HERE to go directly to Microsoft's Really Hidden Files Page. It makes FRIGHTENING READING I can tell you and goes on to tell you what these files do and how you can delete their contents.

Thanks Again :bounce:


#21 WinHelp2002

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Posted 20 August 2004 - 04:46 AM

Guest,
That article is hogwash ... besides it was written: November 3, 2001

As I stated in a previous post when you "clear the cache" the data in "Index.dat" is overwritten with "xxx" so the file no longer retains any previous info. The rest of it is explained on my site.
Mike
Former Microsoft MVP Posted Image 1999-2012
"There's no place like 127.0.0.1"
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#22 Guest_Guest_*

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Posted 22 August 2004 - 04:32 AM

Hi WinHelp2002,
Thanks again for your advice and support – I’ve been on quite some journey the past few days into the obscure world of INDEX.DAT files and DOS. (this is all very new to me)

For some weird reason I couldn’t get DELTREE to delete these invisible files and folders. I thought I would have to delete them individually with DEL *.* and RMDIR. The problem was my boot disk – so I made another from Add/Remove Programs - StartUp disk and - back in business!! I also deleted my cookies INDEX.DAT and reduced the file size down to 16K, which was a surprise – they’ve always been 32K.

A word on www.microsuck.com I do think there is some good info in “Microsoft’s Really Hidden Files” report, especially for me been a beginner - such as viewing what is inside those INDEX.DAT files (I never new you could do that in DOS)

Thanks WinHelp2002
HAPPY AGAIN! :bounce: :bounce:


#23 WinHelp2002

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Posted 22 August 2004 - 08:18 AM

Guest,
You're welcome glad to see you were able to resolve your problem. :wave:
Mike
Former Microsoft MVP Posted Image 1999-2012
"There's no place like 127.0.0.1"
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Blocking Malware, Parasites, Hijackers, Trojans, http://www.mvps.org/...p2002/hosts.htm with a HOSTS file

#24 Guest_BBKing_*

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Posted 24 September 2004 - 09:48 AM

[FONT=Arial][SIZE=1]

Hello,

I have got both 98SE and XP Pro on my system. It is possible to view the index.dat files of the OS that is not running. My question is: Is it okay to delete the contents of these files and save them so that they are blank? (Obviously, they will get filled up again). I'm trying to save myself from going into DOS, of which I know practically nothing.

Many thanks,


BBK.

#25 WinHelp2002

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Posted 24 September 2004 - 10:09 AM

BBKing,

Is it okay to delete the contents of these files

Yes, but delete the folder (Temporary Internet Files) not the contents or just the "index.dat"
[more info]
How To: Delete the Internet Explorer Temporary Internet Files
http://www.mvps.org/...02/delcache.htm
Mike
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"There's no place like 127.0.0.1"
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#26 Mike

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Posted 24 September 2004 - 12:27 PM

Guest,
That article is hogwash ... besides it was written: November 3, 2001

As I stated in a previous post when you "clear the cache" the data in "Index.dat" is overwritten with "xxx" so the file no longer retains any previous info. The rest of it is explained on my site.

View Post


hehehe..... I've seen that goofy page linked in articles from a few major news sites. Whoever wrote that had the tin foil wrapped too tight.
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SpywareInfo: You have no chance to survive. Make your time!

#27 Guest_Guest_rob_*_*

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Posted 24 September 2004 - 05:40 PM

If you're on XP/2K and have an NTFS filesystem, you can make a second Administrator-level account.

Log in as the second account and delete the index.dat files on the first account.

Since it's Administrator level, you won't have any problems.

View Post



My computer has an administrator protected password. Aany easy way to delete index.dat from this computer

#28 Guest_YuriTD88_*

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Posted 25 September 2004 - 03:51 AM

I got two powerful cleaners.

www.superlogix.net - Super utilities (fast cleaner, for daily use)
www.iolo.com - System Mechanic (deletes perfectly, usually 0,01kb left, maybe the empty index.dat files?)

I jjust mentioned these functions to fit this topic. But these have very good other functions too. Try them.




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