There are two ways to manually delete index.dat files, safe mode or using the Windows task manager.

Windows Task Manager

  1. Search for index.dat files
  2. Make a note of the filepaths to the index.dat files
  3. Start Windows Task Manager (Ctrl + Alt + Del)
  4. Kill explorer.exe and iexplorer.exe
  5. Go to menu " File
  6. Click "Run..."
  7. Type "cmd" + press enter
  8. Navigate to index.dat files
  9. Use "del" to delete them ( del index.dat + press enter)
  10. Repeat the above steps (8-9) for each index.dat file
  11. Restart explorer.exe in command prompt (cmd)
  12. Exit command prompt and windows task manager

Safe mode

  1. Restart your computer in safe mode
    How to: Hold down the key F8 during computer startup
    Select safe mode
  2. Browse to your index.dat files
  3. Delete index.dat files
  4. Restart computer