Tame Moody Files With Unlocker

Everyone has had those times when you’re trying to delete (or rename, or move) a simple file or folder from your computer, and spectacularly failing at doing so. If you’re on Windows Vista / 7, you might end up with a dialog like this –

Screenshot 73

This error message is somewhat informative (though all dialogs on Vista / 7 aren’t so enlightening!). It tells you which program is currently using the file that you’re trying to remove, and that you need to close it to progress.

However, Windows XP users aren’t so fortunate. Here’s the error message that you guys get –

error deleting file [Source : Bleeping Computer]

Needless to say, it creates more problems rather than solving the one you’re already facing.

“Another person or program using my files!? Have I been hacked or what? :O” You’re driven to panic, and you call your technician guy, who charges a ridiculous amount to get rid of that file and to assure that you’re indeed safe.

Well, take my advice and don’t run for your technician the next time. Download and install a tiny utility called Unlocker instead. It’s completely free. Once it’s installed, right click on that file / folder and select Unlocker.

Screenshot 74

Unlocker will look for the program (process) that’s locked down your file, and show it to you.Screenshot 76

As you can see in the screenshot above, you can kill the process, or simply unlock the file from the process. If a file is being accessed by more than one processes at a time, use the Unlock All button. Once the file is free from the process, do whatever you want from the options provided – delete, rename, move, or copy.

Unlocker is a simple, yet very effective tool while dealing with locked files. If you’re looking to remove rogue programs that simply won’t budge, have a look at Revo Uninstaller – which is like Unlocker for installed applications.


Rating : 4.5 / 5

Security Concerns

Unlocker comes bundled with a harmless eBay shortcut along with it. Installing this shortcut is completely optional, and you can opt out during the installation, if you want to. However, a few security products like Microsoft’s Security Essentials and McAfee flag this eBay item as ‘severe’ malware. So if your antivirus warns you while you’re installing Unlocker, simply allow it to remove the eBay icon. Unlocker will continue to work without any problems, and you won’t receive any more alerts. Still, I’d definitely like the security companies to remove this bogus alert through an update.