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A temporary file. This may be written as "TEMP file" or "temp file", case is not significant other than that TEMP is a system variable that indicates the folder in which temporary files should be generated.

Temporary files are generated by applications and should be deleted automatically by the application that created them when they are no longer required. Unfortunately this frequently does not happen so temporary files can tend to build up over time. Temporary files can be deleted if they are no longer in use.

Temporary files are commonly denoted by the file extension ".tmp" (or less commonly ".$$$") but this is not always the case. They are typically created in a directory designated as a temporary directory (meaning that the files in the directory are temporary files not that the directory itself is temporary), but some applications may create temporary files elsewhere.