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Windows 7: Problem with locked EXE files

07 Jul 2010   #1
Metalmurphy

Windows 7
 
 
Problem with locked EXE files

I've been having this weird problem with W7 64Bits. Sometimes EXE files get locked by the system. For example I delete an entire folder and it tells me that the folder can't be removed. I enter the folder and all the files except the EXE files are gone. I try to delete them manually and it doesn't work.

If I do a quick reboot and delete the files right away it works, but after a while I start getting the problem again.

Sometimes game updaters and such also say they can't patch some EXE files.



Any idea why this is happening?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2010   #2
not so gray matter

W7 Ult. x64 | OS X
 
 

This could be due to permissions, or it could be that a program is using those resources when you're attempting to delete them.

Using the program Unlocker, you can tell if a file/folder is in use by another program.
Download Unlocker 1.9.0 Free - Get rid of error message like Error deleting file or folder, cannot delete folder: it's being used by another person or program - Softpedia

If your permissions are hinky, you can simply right click on the file/folder go to properties and permissions/ownership and take ownership of the file/folder. Also, you may need to be on an administrator account.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2010   #3
Metalmurphy

Windows 7
 
 

Well, the fact that it's so random when It happens makes me think it's not really a program using the files, unless ofc, I've been infected by a really smart virus that is using them. I must say I'm an above average PC user and I can identify viruses easily, unless this is like something I've never seen before I don't think i've been infected.

I'll give it a shot to that unlocker tool next time I run into the problem.


*edit* And funnily enough, it just happened again with that same file



Firefox reservs both the unlocker1.9.0.part and unlocker1.9.0.exe files as soon as the download starts, and after the download finished, when it tried to delete the reserved .exe to replace it with the actual file it wasn't able to.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2010   #4
Metalmurphy

Windows 7
 
 

Ok, unlocker was no help. It showed that no process was using it.

I'm now trying to delete a EXE file. I delete it, it disappears, I refresh the folder and there it is again. And because of that I can't delete the folder.

*edit* And now it's gone... It seems that the file just stays locked for a long time (about 1 minute).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jul 2010   #5
motc7

 
 

Try this.

  • Boot to safe mode. Safe mode only, do not select safe mode with networking.
  • Find that .exe file and delete it.
  • If it will not straight delete, change the name of the file to something else with a different file extension, such as .txt. Then try to delete.
  • If it deletes, restart computer into normal mode and carry on!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jul 2010   #6
Metalmurphy

Windows 7
 
 

Well like I said, if I reboot and delete the file it works, but soon after I start having the same problem again. And since it's a recurring problem it's affecting lots of programs. For example, right now I want to play Team Fortress 2 but I can't because Steam can't update itself.



I need to find a way to fix this problem instead of just working around it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jul 2010   #7
motc7

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Metalmurphy View Post
Well like I said, if I reboot and delete the file it works, but soon after I start having the same problem again. And since it's a recurring problem it's affecting lots of programs. For example, right now I want to play Team Fortress 2 but I can't because Steam can't update itself.



I need to find a way to fix this problem instead of just working around it.
You say you delete the file, but have you deleted it when you are in safe mode yet?

Also, have you tried the Windows Uninstaller yet? I know that Microsoft no longer supports it as of June 26, 2010 but still does wonders.

|MG| Windows Installer CleanUp Utility 7.2 Download


Here's something else to try as well.

http://majorgeeks.com/Revo_Uninstaller_d5706.html
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jul 2010   #8
Metalmurphy

Windows 7
 
 

What is the uninstaller supposed to do? Remember my problem isn't just about deleting files, it's that they get locked. So they can't be patched/renamed/etc.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jul 2010   #9
motc7

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Metalmurphy View Post
What is the uninstaller supposed to do? Remember my problem isn't just about deleting files, it's that they get locked. So they can't be patched/renamed/etc.
o.k. Sorry, just re-read.


Goto Windows Explorer, and then goto the following directory.

C:\Users\yourusername

I want you to right click that folder and goto properties. Then goto the Security Tab. Take a screenshot and post it here.


Make sure you get a pic of all the usernames that have access to those folders, and specifically, highlight your username and take the screenshot. I'm thinking this is a permissions issue.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jul 2010   #10
Metalmurphy

Windows 7
 
 

Here it is.


There's a "Special Permissions" that isn't listed there, to which there was no check mark on either Allow or Deny.


I should also add that I noticed that some (or maybe all but I didn't wait long enough) files DO disappear after a LONG time. For exemple, I was just trying to update steam, and it gave me that error you see above. I went to the steam folder and steam.exe was there. Without me doing anything it wasn't there anymore after about 10 minutes. So maybe the EXE files DO get unlocked/deleted after a REALLY long time?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Problem with locked EXE files




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