This could also be called “How to use Unlocker”
Unlocker is a free Windows utility that lets you know what programs are getting in the way of deleting a file. For more info, read on..
The “file in use” error comes in many forms -
There has been a sharing violation.
The source or destination file may be in use.
The file is in use by another program or user.
Save yourself the time of trying to figure out what program is using the file you’re trying to delete by downloading and installing Unlocker (freeware!)
- If you installed Unlocker with the default settings, the next time you try to delete a file that’s in use, you’ll get a pop-up message similar to the one below
- If only one item is returned, select it and click Unlock (if multiple items are returned, click Unlock All)
- If unlock doesn’t work, right-click on the problem file/folder and choose Unlocker
- Depending on the file or folder, you’ll be presented with different options. It’s always a good idea to exercise caution when using a program like this – so go easy on Killing Processes and make sure that the file you’re deleting is one that should be deleted. Windows can be very unforgiving.
- When all else fails, Unlocker will offer to delete the file as soon as your PC reboots.
For more info, see the Unlocker FAQ section.