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I recently deleted most of the mp3 files - all transferred by me, I haven't bought any of them from the Microsoft music store - I had in my Lumia 920 via Windows Explorer by browsing to [Phone name] -> Phone -> Music, and then selecting most folders and then deleted them. However, I was left with what seems ALL of the Artist and Album metafiles in the hidden folders Artist and Album under the Music folder. All of them show up as 0 byte files in Windows Explorer.

The problem is that they also show up in the Music app in the phone, and since all the files have been deleted I simply get an Error code 80070003 when trying to do anything with them. This is obvious, since they are deleted. But the main issue is that I have no way at all to know which Artists / Albums exist in my phone!

I cannot delete the files in Windows Explorer, because on multiple computers I get the same error message: Artist could not be deleted. The device has either stopped responding or has been disconnected - However, the phone is still connected and it has not stopped responding! I can continue browsing the files as normal, and I can delete other files, which means the error message is not correct.

There are currently 38 "ghost" artists and 32 "ghost" albums that show up in the Music app, but cannot be deleted in any way: Long-pressing an artist in the Music app does not show any "Delete/Remove" option, I cannot delete them in Windows Explorer, and I also cannot even see them with the Files app from Microsoft. And long-pressing an Album does nothing.

I have never used Sync in the Music app, but I also tried turning it on and off. I don't have an Xbox Music account, so the sync of course cannot login.

Is there any way to remove these leftover Artist / Album files?

Update: After manually deleting all non-existing songs from the Songs list, the artists and albums no longer appear in the Music app. However, they still do exist in my phone as 0 byte files as before. But at least the main issue is resolved (non-exinsting Artists / Albums no longer show up in the phone).

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    You may want to post your solution as an answer. – RareNCool Nov 23 '15 at 19:41
  • I was thinking to, but it doesn't fully solve the problem. Perhaps someone has a way to also delete the 0 byte files, in case they will return to haunt after some update to the Music app or the phone. – Juha Untinen Nov 24 '15 at 6:56
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Prevention

This problem only occurs if you delete the songs via Windows Explorer i.e via a PC.

If you want to delete a song in Windows phone delete the song from the Xbox music player as it will delete the artist and albums files and also remove the song from Music player list. You can also use Files app by Microsoft.

Solution

You can delete the 0 byte files by connecting your phone to Linux.

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