Why can’t I delete a file or folder?

A common error that occurs in many of our systems is while trying to delete a file or folder. Even when there seem to be no issue with the file or folder, still the object does not delete. There can be a number of reasons behind the issue and you certainly need to know them before you do anything else to delete the file and folders.

Common issues:

There seem to be some common issues that won’t let you delete a file or a folder. Sometime file and folder property issues don’t let you delete the file. The creator of the file or folder would have set distinct ownership that would certainly prevent any other user to delete it. The owner of the file or folder would set you as a moderator and you can only delete it when he allows you to do so.

There are instances where you are using a specific file or folder and then try to delete it. This is not possible as a currently open file or folder cannot be deleted in any way. The privileges of the file or folder are with the application that is using them. You cannot delete them until you have the supreme control over them. Try deleting the file or folder once you are done with all the relevant jobs and the file is no more in use of any other application.

File in use error:

The most common of the errors that display while the file is being deleted is that the file is in use. There might be a program that would be using the specific object for any process so you need to stop its use before you delete the file. Look out for the program using the specific object and close both the program as well as the object just to make sure that no instance of the program is running. You would even come up with situation where you would close both the program and the file but the problem would still persist. In such a situation, you need to restart your computer because there might be an instance of the program with the file or folder running in the background.

Task manager is an excellent utility that would help you manage all your processes. It would also let you know of the program if that is running in the background as well. There might be another person on the network shared resources that might be using the file or folder. You are supposed to wait for the access to release until you can delete the object.

Files deleted, root folder exists:

This is another issue that is quite common in the computers. All the files within a folder delete but there seems to be an error with the folder deletion. You need to exit all programs and then try and delete the folder. If this doesn’t seem to work, you can try deleting the folder after restarting the machine. Any other application might have been using the folder resulting into the issue but you can always try the restart method to get rid of the problem.

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