View Full Version : file on desktop
07-26-2004, 12:44 AM
I have this file icon that recently has been appearing on my desktop from time to time.
Size: 234 KB (240,393 bytes)
Size on Disk: 236 KB (241,664 bytes)
(but these keep changing)
Any ideas what it might be?
07-26-2004, 02:26 AM
Googled it (http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=files+named+%7E) and found several references like this:
A file named with the single tilde character (~) appears on your desktop. What is it and why is it there? (http://filext.com/faq/article.php?id=002)
This file started appearing on people's desktop after the April 2003, Cumulative Patch for Outlook Express (330994) update released by Microsoft. If that update is installed and you take any action that changes the Windows Address Book the tilde file will appear on your desktop.
You can find out more about the update itself from this Microsoft page (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/downloads/critical/330994/default.asp).
When you change the Address Book, what should happen is that a backup called YOURNAME.WA~ would be created in the directory C:\Windows\Application Data\Microsoft\Address Book. This is a backup to the Address Book named YOURNAME.WAB in that same directory. With the update installed, however, the backup does not get installed into the correct directory and the name gets shortened to just the ending tilde (~) character. This file appears on your Desktop instead of where it should appear.
You have four options to "fix" this:
Uninstall the patch. If you do this you may open your computer to the security problems that the patch fixes. And, Windows Update will notice that the patch is not present and, depending on how you have Windows Update configured, may reinstall it automatically or ask you to allow it to reinstall it. You will have to tell Windows Update "no" if you don't want to continue having the tilde file on your Desktop.
Leave the patch installed and simply delete the tilde (~) file every time it appears. If you do this the consequence will be that you don't have a current backup of your Windows Address Book. Having this backup may or may not be important to you.
Leave the patch installed and move/rename the tilde (~) file every time it appears. While this would be the safest option it is also the one that requires the most work. You will have to rename the tilde (~) file to YOURNAME.WA~ (substitute your login name for YOURNAME) and then move the file to the C:\Windows\Application Data\Microsoft\Address Book directory and have it overwrite the file of the same name there.
Change the startup directory so the file appears elsewhere. If you right click on the Outlook Express shortcut and choose Properties from the menu you will be presented with a dialog box. One of the entries in the dialog will be "Start In:". Change that entry to read: C:\Program Files\Outlook Express\ and the tilde file should then be created in that directory instead of on the desktop. You should also change the shortcut in the Start|Programs menu the same way so the tilde files won't be produced there either. This won't solve the problem, of course, but it puts the file where you don't have to be bothered by it and, since you know where it is, can recover it if need be.
Microsoft is supposed to be aware of the problem and will likely eventually fix it (perhaps in a new version of the program instead of an update).
If you're not certain, rename the file to TEST.WAB and move it to the indicated directory above. Then double click it and see if the Address Book applet in Windows starts and shows your address book.
07-27-2004, 01:04 AM
Yep, I get those too. Mine is about 1.2 meg though. Yes, my address book is that big for it has a lot of site owners email addresses in it that I have conversed with over the last several months (still do).
07-27-2004, 02:54 AM
Thanks guys... I was beginning to think it might have been something to do with this stupid 'coolwebsearch' spyware that I had to deal with, but after I ran all my cleaners, it was still there.
Why would this have only started happening now? It's been 1 -2 months since I did any updates on Win. Though, it did kind of occurr at around the same time as I added new groups into my address book. But my address book is 980KB, so it cant be reflecting the size of it?
07-27-2004, 09:34 AM
You or the malware may have deleted or altered some registry settings. Try the techniques suggested in the quoted article for moving the file to the OE folder.