Windows 10: Will not delete file

  1.    10 Oct 2016 #1

    Will not delete file

    I go into Explorer to delete a file and it tells "Action can't be completed because the file is open in Windows Explorer"

    But don't you have to open it in Explorer in order to select it to delete it ?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,551
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       10 Oct 2016 #2

    Each file is marked as 'open' when a process accesses it. It should be closed when the process completes. Sometimes a process can end abruptly and not get a chance to clear the flag. The file is left as 'open' when nothing is actually using it. The easiest way to close all such files is to restart the PC. Do that then try deleting it again.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  3.    10 Oct 2016 #3

    Understood. Co-incidently I had a similar thing again just now when a file did not finish copying. Now if I copy something else the first one stays in the copy window stuck on "Canceling". I guess there's no other way to get rid of it. No end task or similar?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,551
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       10 Oct 2016 #4

    James1093 said: View Post
    I guess there's no other way to get rid of it. No end task or similar?
    There's always Task Manager. That can end almost any process (though some you should leave well alone :) ). In this case it's quite safe to restart Windows Explorer. If you have File Explorer open it will be listed as 'Windows Explorer' on the Processes tab under Apps (if you don't have the tabs, click 'more details'). Select Windows Explorer and click the Restart button in the bottom right.

    Edit: though if you're getting problems like this it may be that a restart is overdue. If you have 'fast shutdown' turned on (it is by default) then just shutting down may not reset everything.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  5.    11 Oct 2016 #5

    Thank you Bree. All noted.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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