Unlocker is a free tool that allows you to unlock a file that you can't delete, rename, or move because it is opened in another program. The unlock tool adds a menu point to Windows Explorer, which makes it quite convenient for getting rid of persistent files.

Free unlock tool - Unlocker

When I tested Unlocker with an opened Word file, the tool had no problem unlocking the file. However, Windows 7 Explorer still complained that the file was opened in another program. Nevertheless, Unlocker's delete function was able to remove the file. Note that files that you delete with Unlocker will not be moved to the Windows Recycle Bin.

Unlocker can also move, rename, and copy locked files. Also useful is that the free unlock tool can display all locked files in a folder and its subfolders. You can then select multiple locked files and delete them in one go.

Make sure that you download the correct version for your operating system. The 32-bit edition of Unlocker doesn't work on Windows 64-bit.

Notice that McAfee's Site Advisor reported that the publisher's website (Cedrick Collomb) attempted to make unauthorized changes to their test computer by exploiting a browser security vulnerability. This is why I linked to another download site. Maybe their site was hacked or McAfee falsely interpreted the behavior of their website.

Also note that several antivirus tools identify the 64-bit version Unlocker as malware. This is expected with a tool that messes with Windows handles. It is interesting to note that the 32-bit version doesn't trigger alarms. Unlocker has been available for quite some time and you can find it on all major download sites; thus, I didn't worry about using it on my PC.

I tested Unlocker 1.9.0.

Unlocker

1 Comment
  1. Renjith 13 years ago

    This was the main tool to delete a file while troubleshooting a malware problem. But many times unlocked has failed to unlock and delete files when its a rootkit or trojan infections. Microsoft process explorer was capable of finding the process handles and remove. Even hidden process. But a bit complicated tool. As its options and features are more advanced than unlocker.
    Have a look at this tool if you ever experience such situation.
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896653.aspx

    I have a created a short tutorial on the process explorer.
    see if it helps http://bit.ly/cI4FAu

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