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Is It Safe For Me To Delete Pics Found In A Search Of *.gif*


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#1 Runningrose

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 05:09 PM

I did a Search for *.gif* and found tons of pics from My Pictures file...many. many, many that I had deleted years ago (Hurricane Katrina for example). My instinct was to delete everyone of them but I then saw current pics that I have not deleted and still have in My Pictures file. My main question is: Can I safely delete the pics that I "thought" were already deleted? And can I return some of them to My Pictures file? OH..sudden thought...will the deleted pics just go hide somewhere else?
I realize that nothing is ever really deleted from a pc..(especially Norton & Symantec..biting tongue) but I need the space/memory since I have an older pc and am running low. (I have a HP Pavilion 305 desktop...256MB...yeah, I know, I know.) Am I deluding myself to think that getting rid of pics and music will help? I keep up with disk cleaner..defrag...CCleaner (love it..found out about it while lurking here on BC..ta dummm) in my efforts to maintain my old, slow pc.
I fear that I know just enough about pc's as to be dangerous to the plastic marvel. I have "learned" a thing or two from coming to this site and pilfering around the forums...thank you much! However, I am having trouble finding anything about my question..ergo..am speaking instead of lurking. I hope I have been able to speak clearly....deep breath here.
I will appreciate any info, help or suggestions... short of saying "Get a new pc"...(small attempt at humor.)
Rose, in the throes

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 05:28 PM

Using the Search function to find files...leads to many items which are not necessarily files but references to files.

You say that you found .gif files which you had deleted...I would suggest that you doublecheck that.

Unless you currently have Symantec products installed (which have a hidden Recycle Bin), anything deleted and dumped from the Recycle Bin...should have been history.

Louis

#3 Runningrose

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 01:31 AM

Louis...Immediately let me thank you for replying!

I know without doubt that I deleted the majority of the pics that I found on my search. I always thought of them as jpegs but I found them by doing the *.gif* search. That's how I entered the search info for the search under HP_Pavilion(C:). As I mentioned there are some that go deep into the past. Hurricane Katrina was three years ago and were deleted for sure. True some are still in My Pics and actually at this point I'm not sure if all of My Pics are in this ton of pics that I've found....am still looking thru them all. And yes...I thought of the deleted pics as history...I deleted them and the recycle bin all thru the years but I find they're still on my pc. So far I've counted about 2000 and I'm not thru counting. Also I've found that many of the pics are on there twice. I can't say if all are on there twice but I do keep coming across a pic that I've already seen but it will have a different number. Please..I hope I'm explaining this so that it makes some sort of sense. I'm just lost.

However, I did at one time have Norton/Symantec and when I upgraded this past year, I almost went crazy with the bogged down mess it created and all the emails back and forth with the tech support but that's another story. Finally had to simply cancel it but as you know ole Symantec....it was not gone entirely. I came here to BC and followed the advice I found and just recently was finally able to get rid of the Live Update thing. But surely the Live Update would have nothing to do with a hidden recycle bin?? However nothing would surprise me with Symantec. I'm paranoid after what I went thru with them...sorry.

I'm adding this info just in case it's important or helpful....the cursor displays: Docs & Settings\ Owner\Local Settings\Application Data\HP\Digital Imaging\ Vault.

If I'm a lost cause...just tell me. I promise I won't be offended and will still love this site :thumbsup:
Still hoping,
Rose

#4 hamluis

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 10:05 AM

I can't tell you anything I haven't already stated :thumbsup:.

I used Symantec products for about 5 years, starting with the turn of the century...I know how they work, I know the good points and the bad points (as considered by some).

I cannot tell you anything about HP and its software...but it looks to me as if you need to take a look at that and how it works.

Louis

#5 Runningrose

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 02:15 PM

Louis...again I thank you. I truly do appreciate the time given to my question.

Sounds like I'm on my own again, however. Naturally,I don't know how to "look" into the HP software about this :thumbsup: .
I'll just keep searching everywhere until I can find out what to do about the pics. They should have been off of my pc years ago and I just need to know why they're still around and what to do. There's an answer somewhere.

Thanks again for your time and your fast replies.
Sincerely,
Rose

#6 hamluis

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 03:56 PM

Well...the typical way that I go about dealing with software...starts with reading and familiarizing with how a given program works, what the options are, what it's supposed to do for me.

Otherwise, I remove it from my system.

I have had systems with preinstalled software before...those are the rules I applied to them, before eventually deleting everything and doing a clean install of XP, without unwanted/unneeded programs.

Louis

#7 Runningrose

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Posted 05 September 2008 - 10:05 PM

Well Louis...what can I say. I will never be as proficient as you are when it comes to pc's...wish it was a possibility but my gene pool is lacking. I envy and admire you along with the rest of BC. (I must say, the mere thought of deleting XP and trying to reinstall it freaks me out! I would end up on some kind of Microsoft hit list for an "unclean" install!!)

Today I turned to my big ole book that came with the pc and tried to "look" into anything remotely connected to .gif, jpg, bmp, vaults, imaging, etc. Finding nothing helpful...I came to this simplified conclusion: I will just start deleting the junked pics that I found in my Search. I will follow up with CCLeaner and Advanced Windows Care. Apparently, I will have to go run a Search every once in a while to delete future junked pic pile up.

Perhaps someday I'll find the answer...cause.. solution to this strange turn of events. But for now...all the old pics of hurricanes, flowers, butterflies, dogs, cats, house remodling and the kazillion ebay items that I sold or contemplated selling (over a year ago)..I will delete once again. Hopefully for the last time.

I again thank you Louis for your patience and wish to emphasize my gratitude to you for trying to help/advise/educate me. (Sure wish I could rearrange or add to my DNA coding :flowers:.)

Ok..I'm going away now to begin my arduous task of deleting the dullest collection of previously deleted pics in the world. Relax and carry forth Louis, my good man...continue to help the masses out here who sit in awe of your brain and skills.
Most Sincerely,
Rose
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#8 Platypus

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 06:13 AM

It's often difficult to give precise help without having access to a system to "have a good look around". I do have a suggestion though, (and it's just a guess), that may perhaps explain your situation, Rose.

If you've ever used software like is often provided with a digital camera, to create photo galleries, the .gif images may be small images used as thumbnails for the galleries. If the images are small (as shown in Explorer information or when the mouse pointer is hovered over them), they may be these thumbnails that were left behind when the original full-size images were deleted. There should be no problem deleting them (although if this is their origin and the software that created them is still being used, it may be confused by an empty gallery...). However I'd suggest not deleting any that are duplicates of images currently on your system, until you're sure just why they exist.

This could also be a reason for images to appear more than once. If downloaded images aren't deleted from the camera, they will be included again in the next downloaded gallery. I know Kodak EasyShare does this if you don't select to delete the images from the camera once downloaded, I expect others would work similarly.

Edited by Platypus, 06 September 2008 - 06:18 AM.

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#9 Wingman

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 01:46 PM

When you do the search...and see a reference to a picture you thought you deleted...there should be an option to open the folder containing the (in your case) .gif file. Open the folder and see if the picture is the original picture or as previously stated...a thumbnail image used in the catalog function of your picture viewing software.
If it's just the thumbnail, with no picture...you should be able to delete it.
Don't empty the recycle bin afterwards...just in case you change you mind...they can be restored.
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#10 Runningrose

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 09:31 PM

Wing Man & Platypus...thanks for your input to my question here! I've worried that I did not explain things correctly...wrong terminology, etc.

I do want to say that the search was done with the asterisks *.gif* and later without the asterisks. Of course I got two different results. Not as many pics showed up in the search with the plain..gif. I searched C drive only. Files and Folders. Also included Hidden Files & Folders. I think the total number of Files found was like 3202. I just now counted the files that are the old deleted pics and there are 35 of them. When I right click on any of them, each one will "Open Containing Folder". And each one has tons of pics and each pic can be Previewed. I have deleted 3,138 pics, give or take a few, thus far. (And sure enough, I did restore a few.) It doesn't look like I have made a dent yet. I so want to just highlight the entire section in the search and delete them all at once but as ya'll mentioned...my "keeper" pics are mixed in with the lot.

The pics are from old emails, internet pics, scans and of course my digital camera. I have come across pics that dated back to 2003!! They were digital camera pics and dated. It's just weird to me that they're still around.

I do have Kodak Easy Share. I always just delete the old pics from my camera after I download them to pc. I also delete the "album" from Kodak collection. I've only used the program for downloading my pics to my pc...not for the "View My Album" thing that people use for sharing their pics with friends/family.

I keep trying to tell every little detail and action that I've taken. (Probably too much so.) I keep worrying that perhaps I've failed to give some little bit of info that would explain things better and ya'll could just say.."Oh you dummy...do..blah blah blah"... and it would be fixed. :thumbsup:

Last night on a whim, I did a search for jpeg's and nothing was found. No results at all. This surprised me being as I have jpegs in my keeper pics. Am not questioning it however. I have enough "results" to delete for now....deep sigh.

I am still hoping that when I finally get all of these goofy pics deleted and can delete a lot of music that I've piled up, my ole pc will feel better.

Thank ya'll so much for your ideas and advice...it's nice to know there are people that will take their own time to help out like this. I recognized ya'll's names and also Louis' from my lurking around the site for help in the past. This is the first time that I've "cried out" for help and I appreciate the fast attention...seriously I do.

Ok...am off to continue with Project Massive Delete. Bear in mind...I'm working with only one contact lens on/in. But that's a whole 'nother story... :flowers:

Thanks again kind sirs!!
Cocking head sideways trying to focus eyes,
Rose

#11 Platypus

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Posted 06 September 2008 - 10:32 PM

I do want to say that the search was done with the asterisks *.gif*

So easy to overlook something... :thumbsup:

I missed that! A file extension can have more than 3 characters, so a search for *.gif* will find any files (including folders) that have extensions just beginning with gif. eg, if for some reason there were files or folders with an extension of ".gifs" or even something like ".gifts", they would be included in the search results. A search using *.gif should find just individual image files.

I do have Kodak Easy Share.

EasyShare is a bit notorious for being wilful software that does its own thing regardless. It may be it doing this behind the scenes even if you don't use some features of the program.

Last night on a whim, I did a search for jpeg's and nothing was found. No results at all. This surprised me being as I have jpegs in my keeper pics. Am not questioning it however. I have enough "results" to delete for now....deep sigh.

Did you search for .jpeg or .jpg?

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#12 Runningrose

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Posted 07 September 2008 - 01:38 AM

Hi again...A scarey and horryifying thought suddenly hit me like a brick as I was deleting pics..ergo..I came running. Let me unload it first. Ok...the vast majority of these old pics were deleted from my recycle bin originally. Now here I am returning them to the recycle bin to delete them once again. Am I just putting them back into this same place (vault thing) all over again when I emptied the recycle bin last night? This scarey thought hit me a bit ago as I began to notice a huge amount of pics that I know for sure that I deleted last night! True I keep finding a ton that I didn't see last night but when it began to sink into my brain and one contact lens, that I had seen and deleted a huge amount of the same pics last night...I began to wonder if I'm just actually "recycling" them and they are simply returning to the vault thing all over again? Am I making sense?

Ok..calmer now somewhat. I think I understand what you're saying about .gif. Or sort of anyway. But, and I'm prob wrong here, but I think of these old pics as just regular jpegs or jpg's. For example..some were scenery, etc downloaded from different web sites for my desktop background...there are a few scans of newspaper articles that I made and sent in email...and of course the kazillion from my digital. I've always thought of "gifs" as an animated pic...like say a blinking eye or emoticon :thumbsup: Times like this, the word "thing" and "thingy" is a hinderance and is embarrassing to reveal my ignorance about pc's. :flowers: I did have some pics in folders..like flowers...the kittens I found in my attic...scenery..things like that but they would have been named Flowers,,Kittens, etc. And I'm finding tons that were just individual pics not in a folder ever. This is probably not even what you mean though.

Nothing would surprise me about any software anymore. I'm not crazy about Kodak Easy Share but it came with the camera and I've always just used it. Is even slow loading. I hope they're not hiding more pics somewhere! holy cow!

I did a search for jpeg and jpg both....with and without the *. No results..period. I watched as it searched thru the files and I saw the "Docs & Settings\ Owner\Local Settings\Application Data\HP\Digital Imaging\ Vault."(which is of course where all these "gif" pics are) go by without a hit/result. Just seems strange. If nothing else I do know that the digital camera pics that I have in My Pics are jpegs or so the cursor reads. But once again, I must plead ignorance.

Thanks for the new info and your continued interest. I appreciate any and everything said in my direction.
Sincerely,
Rose

#13 Platypus

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Posted 07 September 2008 - 08:32 AM

Well, the fact that the folder is called a "vault" may indicate Imaging monitors it and prevents what it considers unauthorised deletions. As hamluis said, without having intimate knowledge of how the particular software works, it's hard to know. And I haven't found any helpful information in searches.

To be sure what is happening, you could monitor a test deletion - note the filename, after deleting it identify it in the Recycle Bin where you can confirm the original location, ensure it is still absent from the vault then empty the Bin & see if the file reappears in the vault.

A gif file can be animated, but needn't be. It just describes a particular file format, the Graphics Interchange Format.

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#14 rosiesdad

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Posted 07 September 2008 - 09:20 AM

I found a similar thing by accident, I use easyshare to open all e mail pics.
I ran across a folder with TONS of picutres that I knew were just e mail attachments that was saved somewhere in a temp folder.
I also thought I saw a huge number of .gif files in there.

#15 Runningrose

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Posted 08 September 2008 - 08:32 PM

Did a test deletion. I have since deleted another 2,987 pics and haven't seen the "test deleted" pic thus far. Am hoping the deleted pics are gone for good. Total deleted so far is 6,125. Has been interesting seeing some of them again. Have even restored a few.

I'll continue to delete old pics until I can get the old and already deleted...depleted. I intend to keep a close eye on this "vault" in the future. I deleted a pic from My Pics file and recycle bin Saturday and yes...I found it today as I was deleting from "the vault".

I want to say again that I appreciate all the help and information given me from everyone. I know it was hard to dicipher my rambling thoughts. Your patience is remarkable! BC is an absolutely great site and will remain forever on My Favorites list!

Thanks again to each and everyone...I will always be grateful for your attention in "my time of need."
Take care and stay safe.
Sincerely,
Rose




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