RE: Specified path, file name, or both too long. RRS feed

  • Question

  • With the now much larger HDDs, file paths are likely to become longer. I have recently hit this problem with SyncToy where some file backups fail due to the file path & name combo is too long. Will this be addressed (to cope with much longer file names and paths) in a future version?  I am presently using 2.1 with Win10.  SyncToy is a REALLY GREAT product, and so easy & intuitive to use.  (I have recommended it several times to friends.)   It would be a pity if MS lets the current version stagnate.  It cannot be much work to 'lengthen' the permitted paths. Little or nothing else has to be done with it as its functionality is complete.  So, PLEASE MS, if you have 'frozen' this product, would you consider extending its life by giving it a 4096 char file path, for example, instead of its present 260(?) one?  If I have missed such a version, my apologies for a redundant posting, but I have looked.  In this case, I would be very pleased to learn of  a link to the new version.  Thanks in advance.
    • Edited by Pelcaro Friday, October 9, 2015 6:32 PM
    Friday, October 9, 2015 6:29 PM

All replies

  • Have you ever tryed using this tool called "Long Path Tool" if not , give it a try...
    Friday, October 23, 2015 12:03 AM
  • It isn't a limitation of SyncToy per se, but one of Windows in general.  That is: It is a system issue, not a program issue.

    While I would agree the 260 character limit is arbitrarily "small", the fact is, it has already been extended once.

    4096 characters?  Scrolling or line-wrapping even on a huge monitor just to see a path?   

    My solution was to avoid what I'd come to realize were simply verbose folder names. 

    Ergo, why use "February 15 1995" when 02151995 is exactly half the length?  Same goes for file names.

    I know "full English" (or native tongue of any type) file or folder names looks good, but the problem is, they make everything else more difficult.

    Want to see the path in the address bar?  Shorter is better.  I could create a list of other places it helps but that would be overbearing.

    My best advice is to adapt to the limitation (as opposed to running 3rd party tools) and rethink the need for verbosity.  Does it add meaningful context, or is it just "nice" to have?


    Thursday, October 29, 2015 3:19 PM
  • Thanks Win7Tester for your reply.  In which MS OS is the path extended to 4096?  (Are you suggesting MAXPATH is redefined to 4096 in this case?)

    On now reading more widely on this MAXPATH problem I find a massive and very diverse discussion around it.  It's clearly something that's not going to go away any time soon, if at all.  BTW, I have hit this problem in the past and selectively shortened folder names to fit as a response, but with attendant loss of sematic value.  I still live with that decision in parts of my system and it's irritating.

    However, the problem this time is that the(my) system's files structure is already in place, and has been for some time, following some quite well established personal norms.  The SyncToy issue came up when wanting to use it to make backups instead of xcopy, but I now see this is not going to be feasible.  I will look at getting round this by writing an app with Unicode APIs, something I wanted to avoid.  I suspect there are 3rd party apps that would also do the same.

    Thx again, Pelcaro.


    • Edited by Pelcaro Thursday, October 29, 2015 9:25 PM
    Thursday, October 29, 2015 9:18 PM
  • No, but will look at it.  Thanks for the heads-up.  I believe there are similar tools out there too.


    PS.  Sorry I missed your post on the 23rd.

    Thursday, October 29, 2015 9:23 PM
  • No, the 4096 came from your post.  It was extended years ago from something in the 128 or so range (I don't recall exactly), to the current value.

    Yes, I understand the purported benefit of verbose naming, but once I looked at the problem I decided I really didn't want a path that would require scrolling or line wrap even on a huge monitor, because the value is quickly lost.  Just imagine a tree listing with folder and filenames wrapping all over the place on a 1920x1080 or larger display.  No thanks!

    If you are a private user and this is for your own domain or workgroup, you could use a 3rd party tool (if you trust them), but in a corporate environment, I an't imagine any corporation installing a 3rd party tool to allow verbose pathing.

    Good luck and I hope you get it fixed

    Friday, October 30, 2015 3:16 PM
  • Thx to all who replied on this one.  I have now found 'RichCopy 4.0', by and for MS.  This tool has built-in support for paths longer than 256, which can be switched off, and LANs.  It's not a synchronisation product, but a folder backup tool intended for massive numbers of files either on one platform or spread across a LAN.  I have tried it now a few times and it's the answer for me - to do a reliable backup from a 1T drive to another.  It seems very fast and has a wealth of option switches, most of which appear defaulted to 'normal' for simple copying use.  It you are not looking for syncing, but just backup, this could be your answer.  Personally, I need now to look no further for a backup tool for my LAN. BTW, I looked quickly at Robocopy, and that also has support for paths longer than 256, but RichCopy multi-threads so is going to be more suited to multi-cored CPUs.  I didn't try out Robocopy, so cannot comment on it, it gets good 'reviews'.


    Monday, November 9, 2015 10:17 AM