Beginner Builder series 75% done! will probably never be finished. :(

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Unlocker: it's like the anti-Microsoft.

So you're crusing along, fluidly flying from one task to another, but then suddenly "Cannot delete folder, in use by another process." Wha? Bah! Unlocker to the rescue!

Unlocker basically unlocks. It sits running in your tray, waiting to spring into action. When you attempt to delete a file, move a file, or eject a drive and it fails because it is in use by some process, Unlocker springs into action. It pops up a window showing all of the processes that are currently using whatever is trying to be deleted/moved/ejected. Then you can click through the processes and click "unlock", or just hit "unlock all," and wham, now the folder/file/drive can be deleted/moved/ejected.

Sometimes windows gives you an error when nothing is wrong, at least according to Unlocker. In this case, a window pops up that says "No handles found" and you have the choice of deleting, moving, or renaming whatever is supposedly messed up.

The last thing I like would be the shell context. Unlocker installs an option in the explorer context menu, so that something doesn't have to be wrong for you to unlock something. Just right click your desired file/folder, and click Unlocker, and you have all of the functionality mentionedd above, but you don't ahve to try to delete/move/rename something to see if it is being used.

Probably my favorite thing about Unlocker is that it actually saves Explorer. I've noticed that alot of times, if something is being used and there are no obvious program that could be using it, explorer.exe can sometimes be using it, I dunno I have to end it, delete/move/rename the file, and start it again. Unlocker saves it.

There is a program, though, that runs all the time, called "Unlocker Assistant." At the moment, it's consuming 1.8mb of RAM for me. You don't necessarily have to add Unlocker to startup, but if you don't, you'll have to manually navigate to the file/folder and unlock it rather than have a window pop-up when there is an error.

Also, Unlocker is portable (at least I believe.) I mean, I don't know if the Unlocker Assistant is portable, but I am fairly sure that you can just drag anything (folders, files, drives, etc) onto Unlocker.exe, and it will perform just like normal. I don't understand why it would write to the registry, but I'm fairly confident that it's portable.

Let me put it this way: on my personal PC, I try to keep the programs installed to a bare minimum, and Unlocker is one of those programs.

Visit Unlocker website for Download

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