You eventually have to mention the father of all file unlocking software programs Unlocker if you write about file unlockers in Windows. Unlocker is without doubt one of the best tools for dealing with files that cannot be moved, deleted, copied or renamed.
This happens quite often when files are still in use while you try to do so. Sometimes, it is obvious that a file is locked, for instance if you play it in a media player while trying to move it. At other times, it may be used by a "hidden" process which makes it quite frustrating.
There are alternatives on the other hand and LockHunter is one of them. Lockhunter is available for 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows.
It integrates itself in the right-click context menu of Windows Explorer just like Unlocker does. Like Unlocker, LockHunter becomes only active when you right-click an item and selects the "What is locking this file / folder" option from the menu.
LockHunter will then start and display the path of the file and folder plus the processes that are locking the file.
Each process is listed by name and file path with the option to display additional information by clicking on the plus sign in the front.
The three buttons at the bottom of the interface provide you with the means to unlock the selected file or folder, delete it right away or to close or delete the process that is locking the file or folder on the computer system.
Options to unlock, close or delete the selected process become also available after right-clicking on a listed process or file in the main window of the application. The main difference to Unlocker are the 64-bit support of the file unlocker and the amount of information that are displayed in the LockHunter interface.
The program has been updated regularly ever since we reviewed it for the first time here on Ghacks. The developer has added new features to the program, including options to delete files on the next start of the operating system which can be handy if a file is locked in a way that it cannot be deleted while Windows is running.
Lockhunter is an excellent program to unlock files and folders on a Windows system so that you can run file operations on them. If you run into issues regularly, you may want to give this a try as it provides you with all the tools necessary to deal with locked files and folders on your PC.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.