How to find files with a long path length?

When trying to change the default folder of my Documents folder to another drive I got an error that said the path length of some files where too long to be moved and the path length could have a maximum of 260 characters. Then raised the question how I could find the specific files that caused the error.

Now you could say I could've just searched for the specific file by looking through some files, but Documents folder consisted of thousands of files and folders so checking this would have been a lot of work.

Fortunately I found a working solution! This solution lists all files with a path length greater than 260 characters in the terminal.

  1. Open PowerShell
  2. In the terminal navigate to the Documents folder.
  3. Run the following command.
cmd /c dir /s /b |? {$_.length -gt 260}

Other solutions

Option 1

Run dir /s /b > paths.txt in the directory in the terminal that you want to check. This command will create a text file called paths and will list all files in the directory you runned the command from.

Option 2

You can also download tools online that will scan your drive and that will show you path lengths of all files. I didn't choose this option, because I didn't want to install another program.