Why I am unable to delete some files in Windows 7?

By Khurram.Shahid ·
Hi, I cannot delete certain files in Windows 7. They are mostly in ".mp4" & ".mkv" format. These files cannot be renamed also. I recieve the below message when I try to delete these files:


What is causing this problem & how to fix it? Looking forward to your response. Thanks :)

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A system Process is using the file

by wsir45 In reply to Why I am unable to delete ...

I believe maybe a system process is using the file.

Download iobit unlocker. It is absolutely free from Install, and right click the file you want to delete, hit unlock and you are done. Let me know how it goes.

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A system Process is using the file

by drabzz In reply to Why I am unable to delete ...

To fix this:

1. Save any work you have open and close any applications you may have running.
2. Now open Task Manager, Processes tab, and right-click on the entry for Explorer.
3. Select End Process Tree. All windows and the desktop will close, and you will be left with only the Task Manager open.
4. Select File, New Task (Run) and enter Explorer, then hit OK. Your Windows Desktop will now reload.

You should now be able to navigate to the file or folder and delete it.

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The System Process is Indexing

by miguelone In reply to Why I am unable to delete ...

dollars to donuts. It could be something else, but chances are, if it was something obvious like some suggested, you probably would have called the Geek Squad, instead of looking here. If it was something obscure, well I guess a lot of the other answers would be more helpfukl. Windows by default makes an index if your files, which it is updating all of the time, especially if you are in the process of moving and renaming. For reasons unknown to me it will lock the file while it sucks whatever info it needs and move on to trap some other hapless file.
Come back a little later, make sure it is nmot open in another window, and it should delete/move/rename/whatever.
If it is REEEAAALLY geting on your nerves, and you don't need to find files fast using the little "search" box in the upper right hand corner of explorer, just Google "stop indexing windows 7", and someone smarter than me will step you through it

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And the actual answer is.........

by JimHjr73 In reply to Why I am unable to delete ...

Windows Explorer is locking the thumbs.db file. To fix it is simple and nowhere near as complicated as the other answers.

Press Alt + F, from Windows 7 Explorer
* Select Tools
* Select Folder Options
* Select the View tab
* Check the box that says "Always show icons, never thumbnails"

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Can not delete file. Error is "Could not find this item".

by PhillipMatlou In reply to Why I am unable to delete ...

This seems to be a common bug to all windows 7 users. Please take note that this problem also happened with XP. (Like other users I did not bother with MS Vista).

After some research by a friend, we found that this solution worked the best:

RD /S /Q

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