How to Find out which Process is Locking a File or Folder on Windows 11 or 10?

When we often attempt an action (delete, rename, copy, etc.) on a file, we get a File in Use dialog box showing a prompt that “The action can’t be completed because the file is open in another program. “ In some cases, it will show the process or program name that is using the file. But, a lot of times, it doesn’t.

On Windows 11 or 10, you might sometimes want to move a file or folder to another location or delete that permanently. But you see a warning message saying that you can’t complete the action because another program is using the file when you are doing this. It happened for several reasons, like a file or folder used by another process or malware having altered the permission.

Before, we mentioned a few third-party Windows utilities, such as Wise Force Deleter, ForceDelete, and FileAssassin, that let you unlock the process and delete the desired files or folders from your PC.

Now, how to tell which process has a file open? If urgent, you need to identify the process of locking a file and then end the process to modify the target file. This risewindows article will guide you on how to find out which method is locking a file or folder in Windows 11 or 10. For this, we will use PowerToys.

How to Determine which Process is Locking a File or Folder in Windows 11 or 10?

Follow these steps To quickly find which process is locking a file or folder on Windows 11 or 10:-

Step 1. Firstly, download the latest version of PowerToys and install it on your computer.

Step 2. Now, launch the PowerToys application on your Windows machine.

Step 3. Then, select File Locksmith in the left sidebar, and on the right, ensure the Enable File Locksmith toggle switch is turned On.

Step 4. After that, locate the file or folder locked on your computer. Next, right-click on it and select What’s using this file option? On Windows 11 PC, you need to select “Show more options” to get this option in the classic context menu.

Step 5. Finally, click on the down caret arrow to expand it. Here, it will display the Process ID, Current User, and several locked Files.

If you want to unlock the file or folder, click the End task button.

Once you execute the above steps, you can move/delete the file or folder in Windows 11 or 10.

Download PowerToys

You can download the latest version of PowerToys at GitHub.

That’s it for the article.

I hope this post will be informative to you.

Good luck & keep reading, guys.

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