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Solved: XP Annoyance: can't delete files "in use"

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by WButchar, Sep 28, 2008.

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  1. WButchar

    WButchar Thread Starter

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    This XP annoyance has bugged me for a long time.

    When I'm cleaning up my filing system, I may consider deleting some folders, but first move out of them certain files I may still want to keep. However, when I try to delete the no-longer-needed folders, XP constantly comes up with a message telling me I cannot delete the folders because it may be being used by another program and to first shut that program down.

    Well, it is NOT being used by another program because ALL the programs that could remotely have anything to do with that folder- minus the OS, anti-virus, etc., are OFF!!

    Even if I shut down EVERYTHING except for the OS, that same idiotic error message still comes up and refuses to allow me to delete the folder UNTIL I reboot the system. So, I have to write down each and every folder I plan to delete and then delete them after rebooting the system. And STILL the occasional time the error message comes up telling me it's being used by another program.

    WHICH other Program????

    I'd like to know what idiot at Microsoft came up with this glitch? Personally, If I wrote the software for this OS, I would at least mention which program was using the file I was attempting to delete and have the option for this program to be shut off. BUT!!!...Somehow the people at Microsoft manage to once again lose grasp of the obvious.

    So, now that I've once again given my opinion re: the inner workings of MS, is there anyone out there that has had this problem and has figured out a solution other than rebooting the system?

    Be much appreciated.

    THankX!
     
  2. WButchar

    WButchar Thread Starter

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    Incidentally, for some strange reason, the folders all become "read only", which means they cannot be accidentally deleted. However, neither can one change them from being a "read only" file.

    Was this some kind of misguided attempt at added security or something??? Not impressed.
     
  3. nessyguin

    nessyguin

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    There are loads of possibilities . The ones I've come across most often are poorly written programs that latch themselves on to a Windows service (usually very easily dealt with by using Unlocker) and malware/virus remnants from either a botched removal or active malware/virus . The fact that the attributes have changed to read-only suggests the latter . It's a very rare occurence for me to defend M$ but it's unfair to blame the OS for problems introduced by the user (unless they really do have a Glitch dept. ) .

    Unlocker is available free here ... http://ccollomb.free.fr/unlocker/ .... though I suspect a visit to the malware forum will be your next port of call .
     
  4. WButchar

    WButchar Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the reply. Actually, the glitch I mentioned seems to be very common. Both of the computers I deal with at work have the same glitch as well as several computers at my old job. It's definitely a problem with XP. You can try it yourself.

    All you do is make a folder and store several files in it such as jpegs, tiffs, docs, etc. Make another folder. Then "cut and paste" (NOT "move") the files from the one folder to the other. Now try and delete the previous empty folder. Almost every time it will not allow you to delete it. "Moving" the files from the first folder to the 2nd will allow you to delete the 1st folder afterwards, but not "cutting and pasting" them until you reboot the system or (this is just a guess) after you dump the clipboard, of which I've never done and do not know how to do. (Any ideas how to dump the clipboard???)

    Check the properties of the folder and the "read only" box will be checked off. Uncheck that box. Close properties, then view properties again. The "read only" box is checked off again.

    Magic?...

    This neat trick seems to work on every pc I've tried.
     
  5. EAFiedler

    EAFiedler Moderator

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    Hi WButchar

    Clear the clipboard by copying something else, select a word or a letter and copy it.
    The clipboard's contents will be replaced with the most recent copy action.
     
  6. WButchar

    WButchar Thread Starter

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    Would still like to know how to dump the clipboard if you or anyone knows how, but I did download Unlocker and it works fine. Weird thing is that it showed me I had a few other folders locked. It did unlock each one.

    My next question is: Where do people find programs like this? Seems like every now and then I come across some strange activity on my pc and, sure enough, there usually is some obscure program out there that works as an easy fix. Be nice if MS would start including these in its OS. Mind you, I imagine there will always be some new glitch to deal with.

    For the sake of rambling on,... in the 90's I had discovered a rare but lethal glitch in CorelDRAW 7 (perhaps a hidden virus? no idea.) By doing a few proceedures in a specific order, one of the page layout options would turn to gibberish.

    Out of curiosity, I clicked on it. Bad mistake! My pc froze to the point that unplugging it did not help. Had to wipe out everything and do a complete reinstall. Thought it was a problem with my pc, so I decided to do the exact same steps again.

    Yup! Same gibberish showed up and I just had to click on it again. Not a good idea!

    None of us had ever heard of such a thing before or since. I'm guessing it may have been some type of virus that somehow got thru. Don't know why the anti-virus didn't pick it up. Haven't seen anything like it in any other version of CorelDRAW.

    Anyway, thanks again for the info on "Unlock". Saves me a great deal of frustration and I plan on installing it on the pc's at work.
     
  7. WButchar

    WButchar Thread Starter

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    THanks for the clipboard info! :)
     
  8. nessyguin

    nessyguin

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    Usually on fora such as TSG :)
     
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