File Name Warning

I’m seeing the exact same thing as this person on my computer.

I am working on a computer (XP-Pro) that comes up with the following message every time it is booted.

“There is a file or folder on your computer called “C:\PROGRAM” which could cause certain applications to not function correctly. Renaming it to “C:\PROGRAM1″ would solve this problem. Would you like to rename it

The options are “rename” and “ignore”. She has been picking “ignore” each time and doesn’t seem to be having any problems in Windows. She has no “C:\PROGRAM” folder. She runs Norton Antivirus 2003 and her virus definitions are up to date. See the error message at

I think the “File Name Warning” title on the window looks a little phony. Does this look familiar to anyone?
What would be your recommendations?

Source: Need help with startup error – technology support

But I’m using Windows XP Home. I wonder where it’s from?

I don’t have a C:\program folder, but there is a 24 byte file called program (no extension). I wonder where it came from? Opening it in a text editor shows this:

Name: Description:

No idea where it’s from.

Read the comments below for more info, then add your own comment! 

36 Responses to “File Name Warning”

  1. CyberChimp says:

    Hi Elliot –

    I just stumbled across your post whilst searching Google for the exact same error message, which has just started appearing on my PC at startup. I’m running ME, btw. I also have no such folder, but my version of the file of that name contains the following:


    If that had ‘program’ at the start of it, it would be a legitimate path to a file in my MIRC app folder.

    I’ve no idea what has caused this, but I’m going to try simply moving that file out of the C: root directory, and see if the start-up message goes away.

    Did you solve your problem? I’d be intersted to hear – could you post here again, or email me?

  2. Elliot says:

    Hmm… I think it went away on its own. It may be a temporary problem. or I may have forgotten what I did. If I happen to remember, I’ll let you know.

  3. CyberChimp says:

    For the record (in case anyone else stumbles across our postings), I simply deleted the file. The ‘error’ message stopped popping up at start up, and there seem to have been no ill effects. Thanks for posting, and replying. :)

  4. Adam says:

    CyberPimp & Elliot – I have also been getting that error on startup occasionally. I’m running WinXP Pro. And this might help CyberPimp – I opened the the file (which I renamed to Program1) in Notepad. Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt To get a file type !MyCurrentNick file.mp3
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt MP3list made by eli-‘s mp3 addon
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt ———————————————————————————
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt This list was last updated on 07/04/2004
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt ———————————————————————————
    Were the first lines. Following that is an mp3 list of mp3s on my machine that the mIRC addon generated. These are the final two lines:
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt ———————————————————————–
    Files\mIRC\mp3list.txt Total: 587 Filez (2.55gb)

    I think this is what CyberPimp was experiencing – something to do with an mIRC addon. I hope this helps and if you have any more information please feel free to email me at [email protected]

  5. Ryan says:

    I got the same error after uninstalling a MS utility to scan and remove a virus outbreak. The file was in the root drive and did not have an extention. The file contained information related to the utility.

  6. brian says:

    The same error shgowed up on my alternate machine. It runs win 2000. I received it after I uninstalled all of the media players when I was having trouble with sound. I uninstalled Realplayer,winamp,microsoft media player,and a few other programs that I did not recognize. I also removed an MIRC program after the re-boot. The c:\program file had no extention & was jibberish in notepad. the error is nwo goine at startup after I renamed the file manually. computers are fun aren’t they????

  7. Liz says:

    I am having the same problem on an XP Tablet PC opperating system. Will try the deletion solution. If anyone has more information please contact me at the above email address.

  8. Herman says:

    I found it too suddenly. I have the feeling it started after I installed ICQ. I have Mirc installed for long time and never experienced the problem before. But every time

  9. Herman says:

    Oops. I think I found it now. Sorry I didnt finish the previous comment. It is indeed Mirc. I installed a script “Whois Watcher” in Mirc to show flybye’s in a channel. It seems the log is creating a file called program in the root. Check your mrc files

  10. FRANK says:


  11. Andy says:

    While trying to install some software from a DVD, I kept getting an Installshield 1608 error. I tried everything that Installshield recommended and still got the error. Took things a step further and created another user account on my machine to see if it’d install from there. Well, I got this C:\Program dialog box that you guys are talking about. Had Windows rename it Program1, switched back to my original user account, and sure enough, the program installed! It took me literally six hours to get that thing to work. Go ahead and rename it, it could save you some time down the road!

  12. Dave says:

    You should definitely rename it. Many applications will not run properly if this file is present. This is because of the way windows searches for service executables.

    The file is guaranteed not needed for any software. Think of it this way, any software which intentionally puts that file there will break all sorts of other software.

    On the other hand, there are plenty of mistakes well meaning users can do to get it there, due to the space in c:\Program Files…

  13. TallFurryMan says:

    I’ll feed the thread : I have the same, and the only install I did was OpenVPN. Install-uninstall-reinstall. I assume this comes from an InstallShield problem. But I was very surprised with this box nonetheless.

  14. TallFurryMan says:

    Oh, I think I know. Any of you have ZoneAlarm ? I think that’s the popup owner. Anyway…

  15. terry says:

    I have winXP pro and it runs yttruko.exe, called by program1??? No idea what it does but with a name like that has to be bad! So I deleted it. Anyone know what the … it is?

  16. Anonymous says:

    File Name Warning
    There is a file or folder on your computer called “C:\Program”
    which could cause certain applications to not function correctly.
    Renaming it to “C:\Program1” would solve this problem. Would
    you like to rename it now?
    [ ] Don’t perform this check at startup [Rename] [Ignore]

    If the box is checked, this registry key is created:
    “RogueProgramName”=”no” (data = anything else switches the warning back on)
    This is poor coding in Microsoft’s part since services tend to load before this warning is shown. Additionally it should scan the root directory for all folders with spaces in and then for all executable files in root with names of the first part of the folder name with a space in eg: C:\foo.exe will execute instead of C:\foo bar\…

  17. In my computer (Windows XP Home) t here is a folder name called: C:\Program\321Studios

    The folder was created by “DVD Copy Plus” program.
    So when the program is removed using the utility “Add or Remove Programs” from the Control Panel and then the computer is Turn Off and Back On again, the message below will appear on your screen.
    File Name Warning

    There is a file or folder on your computer called “C:\Program”
    This could cause certain applications to not function correctly.
    Renaming it to “C:\Program1″ would solve this problem.
    Would you like to rename it now?

    [] Don’t perform this check at startup [Rename] [Ignore]

    Therefore, I just deleted the folder. The message did not appear again.
    I believe it is a software problem because it does not delete in the first place when it is removed.

  18. SW says:

    I work in IT support in Sweden, and too stumbled upon this post while helping a customer (in fact, she is still on the phone) I renamed the file to PROGRAM1 as suggested. Should work. Thanks!

  19. Kel says:

    Look for a file under the root of c that is call program with no extention. This causes windows to get confused about where your program files resides.

  20. Kel says:

    Then Delete that file log out then log back in.

  21. Anthony says:

    I have the same problem, only cannot find the file named “program.” It isn’t in the c drive location or anywhere

  22. Charlie says:


    I’m having the same program. I searched the entire drive for anything called “program” and saw nothing out of the ordinary. I’m wondering if this is a virus.

    I had to uninstall Norton AV around the same time, it became completed corrupt, getting fatal memory write errors. I’m also getting application errors from a program called “Program” – even though I can’t find any files called program.

    Anyone have any ideas?

  23. William says:

    This message under discussion: “there is a file or folder on your computer called C:\PROGRAM” is a legitimate message. If there is not a folder, look for a FILE. Files with this name get created when trying to create a folder or file within “C:\Program Files” (like when installing a new program) but whoever or whatever doing the creating forgot to include quotation marks. If there is some content to the C:\Program file, that might be a clue to which program has the buggy installer. Send the author an email.

  24. Greg Wright says:

    I have found why it happened to me. I just installed an application on my local work laptop, which wasn’t working correctly on one of my servers. It’s the OpManager server monitoring software from adventnet. I restart my server the other day and this same message appeared. I thought it odd and maybe a virus, but just clicked ignore. It went away and didn’t come back.

    Well, came in this morning and had the same problem on my local machine. I then started to look for reasons and solutions on the internet and came across this blog, thankfully. Here’s what I’ve determined.

    I went to the DOS prompt and changed to the root (C:\) and found a file there called Program. Hmmm, I know really well what’s all on my machine and I know I didn’t put that there. I type the command Type c:\Program to view the contents of the file in the DOS window and found SET and other DOS PATH commands that refer to this OpManager application.

    I’m still not sure what it’s for. I have a gut feeling it’s not a virus because it’s only after having installed this app that the message started to appear. I’m going to rename the file so I conform with the advice here in the blog and the message. I’ll yet figure out what it’s for and why the program put it there, anyways, I’m confident I know why *I* have it on my machine.

    Hope this helps anyone else.

    Greg L. Wright
    DBA, Alianza GCS

  25. Robin says:

    For those who can’t see the file, check your folder options settings under – windows explorer\tools\folder options\view\hidden file and folders. Might be a hidden file.

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