Find lastWriteTime and LastAccessTime for all subfolders

With my recent promotion I’ve inherited updating older scripts (like my recent question about logging) to make them better so to speak.

I have a script that will check the LastWriteTime and LastAccessTime of a single folder and all contents.

$foldername=Read-Host "Please enter a folder Name"
$LWT = dir -Recurse "path\$foldername" | 
    ?{$_.GetType() -ne [System.IO.DirectoryInfo]} | 
    sort -prop LastWriteTime | 
    Select -last 1 LastWriteTime 

$LAT = dir -Recurse "path\$foldername" | 
    ?{$_.GetType() -ne [System.IO.DirectoryInfo]} | 
    sort -prop LastAccessTime | 
    Select -last 1 LastAccessTime

write-host "($LWT) ----- ($LAT)"

I need to see if i can change this to look at all the folders in the project directory, to save me and my co-worker a few hours of entering a single folder at a time with this current script.

Problem I’ve ran into is an error saying it can’t find a file name in one of the folders, digging into this it’s not that it can’t find it, the file name is too long. Unfortunately i don’t have that error available to share.

Here’s what I’ve tried so far -

#$foldername=Read-Host "Please enter a folder Name"
$Desktop = [Environment]::GetFolderPath("Desktop")
$path = "folder path" 
$skip = "path to root folders in the directory that gave errors"

Try {
Get-ChildItem -Path $path -Exclude $skip -Recurse -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue |
    ?{$_.GetType() -ne [System.IO.DirectoryInfo]} | 
    sort -prop LastWriteTime,LastAccessTime | 
    Select -last 1 LastWriteTime,LastAccessTime | 
    Select-Object LastWriteTime,LastAccessTime | 
    Export-Csv "$Desktop\Folder_Access_list.csv"
Catch {
Finally {
    Out-File "C:\Folder Archive\folder_use_errors.txt"

I’ve had that script running for an hour now in a test folder with 7 folders, each of the 7 folders has 3 or 4 sub folders, and those folders have a few subs, and then each of those has 10-15 documents. Total size of all of this is just under a gig of data. I’ve had the single folder script run on a couple gigs of data with hundreds more files/folders and complete in a few minutes, give or take. This leads me to believe my script isn’t working right.

The actual project folder i’ll be using this on has about 4 TB of data, almost 600 root folders, and countless thousands of sub folders. I plan to let it run all weekend next weekend, if i can get it to work.


Yeah, overly long filenames remain a problem in .NET, some 20 years after long filenames became normalized in Windows. There’s not a ton you can do about it if it’s just the filename. If it’s the entire file path, you can try mapping a PSDrive to the containing folder to reduce the path size.