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How to Fix: “The process cannot access the file” Error on SharePoint 2010

Most the developers I know have a stand-alone deployment of SharePoint in their own laptops, it gives them the capabilities of SharePoint without having to go with a full-blown SharePoint 3-tier farm. However most of the times they try to upgrade from SharePoint 2007 (aka. MOSS) to SharePoint 2010, they are confronted with the following and annoying error message:

“The process cannot access the file '<Path\FileName>' because it is being used by another process.”

 

The Issue:

Just so you know, when SharePoint configuration says "files are locked", what it really means is "a few rows in the SharePoint configuration database are locked for updates." These are not really real files in the sense of our windows explorer files. And that sort of behavior is as expected and per design by SharePoint. The Timer service is supposed to have this power to lock/update/release resources in the SQL Server; Unfortunately, a few times the locks are not released properly or quickly enough for the upgrade to continue Smile

The Fix:

In the start Menu of your SharePoint server, call the “services.msc” shortcut, this will lead you to the Services interface running in the local machine.

services-msc

Once there, find the “SharePoint 2010 Timer” and double click-it so you can see the “SharePoint 2010 Timer Properties”

sharepoint-2010-timer-service 

IMPORTANT: In the properties select “Manual”or “Disabled”. You need to perform this step in order to force the service to release the hold on the files.

sharepoint-2010-timer-service-properties

Then restart your machine. When the server is back online again,  call the “SharePoint 2010 Products Configuration”, this will realign the Sharepoint Timer Service and will fix your new upgraded server.

sharepoint-2010-configuration-fix

I know it sounds weird this solution to “restart and everything will be OK”, but that’s how it worked for me and some friends a couple of times already.

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