0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION Windows Error [FIXED]


Imagine this scenario: you’re working diligently on an important document when suddenly, your computer freezes. After a moment of panic, you notice an error message on the screen – 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION. Frustration sets in as you realize that this error is preventing you from accessing the file you need. You try various methods to fix it, but nothing seems to work.

Don’t worry, you’re not alone. The 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION is a common Windows error that can disrupt your work and leave you scratching your head. But fear not, as we’re here to help you troubleshoot and resolve this issue.

In this article, we’ll delve into the causes of the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error, provide you with step-by-step troubleshooting tips, and even share some preventative measures to minimize the chances of encountering this error in the future. So let’s dive in and get your files unlocked!

Key Takeaways:

  • The 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION Windows Error can be frustrating, but it’s a common issue.
  • In this article, we’ll explore the causes and provide troubleshooting steps.
  • Preventive measures can help minimize the chances of encountering this error in the future.
  • If you’re unable to resolve the issue, seek professional help.
  • Optimizing your Windows performance can improve your overall computing experience.

What Causes the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION Error?

The 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error can occur due to various factors. One common cause is when another process or application has a lock on the file that you’re trying to access. This can happen if a program is actively using the file or if it is open in an editor or another application. In some cases, antivirus software or disk encryption tools may also cause this error. It’s important to identify the underlying cause of the lock violation to effectively resolve the issue.

To better understand the causes of the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error, let’s take a look at some possible scenarios:

  1. Locked file: When you try to access a file that is currently in use by another program, such as when it’s being edited or opened in another application, the file can be locked. This lock prevents other processes from accessing the file and can result in the ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error.
  2. Antivirus software: Some antivirus programs have real-time scanning features that may lock certain files to prevent malicious activity. While this is a security measure, it can also lead to lock violation errors.
  3. Disk encryption: If you have enabled disk encryption on your computer, such as BitLocker, it may cause lock violation errors when trying to access encrypted files or folders. The encryption process may lock these files to protect their integrity.

By understanding these potential causes, you can take the necessary steps to resolve the lock violation error and regain access to your files.

“Understanding the causes of the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error is crucial for resolving the issue and preventing its recurrence.”


The ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error can manifest in various ways, indicating a problem with file access. Some common symptoms include:

  • System freezes or crashes when trying to open or modify a file
  • Error messages indicating that a file is already in use or locked
  • Inability to save changes to a file
  • Slow or unresponsive file operations

Experiencing these symptoms can be frustrating, but by understanding the underlying causes, you can take appropriate actions to resolve the issue and prevent future occurrences of the error.

Troubleshooting Steps to Fix the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION Error

To resolve the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error on your Windows system, follow the troubleshooting steps below:

  1. Close any programs that may have a lock on the file you’re trying to access. This will release the locked resources and allow other processes to access the file.

  2. Restart your computer. Sometimes, a simple restart can help in releasing locked resources and resolving the lock violation issue.

  3. Temporarily disable any antivirus software or disk encryption tools that may be causing conflicts with file operations. These programs can sometimes interfere with file access and trigger the error.

  4. Check for available Windows updates and install them. Updates often include bug fixes and patches for known issues, which can help in resolving the lock violation error.

  5. Run a full system scan with your antivirus software to check for any malware or security threats. Malicious programs can sometimes cause file lock conflicts and trigger the error.

  6. Use the built-in Windows Disk Check utility to check your hard drive for any errors. This can help in identifying and resolving any underlying disk issues that may be causing the lock violation error.

  7. If the error continues to persist, it may be necessary to seek professional assistance. Consult with a qualified technician who specializes in Windows error troubleshooting, or contact Microsoft support for further guidance.

By following these troubleshooting steps, you should be able to troubleshoot and resolve the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error on your Windows system.

Additional Notes:

The 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error occurs when a process is unable to access a file due to another process locking a portion of it. This error can disrupt file operations and cause frustration. By following the troubleshooting steps above, you can effectively troubleshoot and resolve this error on your Windows system.

Troubleshooting StepsDescription
Close ProgramsClose any programs that may be locking the file you’re trying to access.
Restart Your ComputerA simple restart can release locked resources and resolve the lock violation error.
Disable Antivirus SoftwareTemporarily disable antivirus software or disk encryption tools that may be causing conflicts.
Check for Windows UpdatesInstall available Windows updates, as they often include bug fixes for known issues.
Run System ScanPerform a full system scan with your antivirus software to check for malware or security threats.
Check Hard DriveUse the Windows Disk Check utility to identify and resolve any hard drive errors.
Seek Professional HelpIf the error persists, consult a qualified technician or contact Microsoft support for further assistance.

Preventing Future Lock Violation Errors

While it’s not always possible to completely prevent lock violation errors, you can take some steps to minimize the chances of encountering them in the future. Here are some tips to help prevent future lock violation errors:

  1. Avoid having multiple programs or applications that access the same file simultaneously.
  2. Close applications properly when you’re done using them, instead of abruptly ending the process.
  3. Keep your operating system and software up to date with the latest patches and updates.
  4. Regularly scan your system for malware and other security threats using reliable antivirus software.
  5. Take care when using file-sharing or collaboration tools to ensure that files are not locked when others need to access them.
  6. Consider using file locking mechanisms or tools that allow for concurrent access to shared files without causing lock violation errors.

By following these preventive measures, you can minimize the chances of encountering lock violation errors and ensure a smoother file management experience.

Seeking Professional Help

If you have followed all the troubleshooting steps and still can’t resolve the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error, it may be time to seek professional help. You can contact Microsoft support for assistance or consult with a qualified technician who specializes in Windows error troubleshooting. They will be able to provide more advanced solutions based on your specific system and configuration.

Reasons to seek professional help:Benefits of contacting Microsoft support:
– Extensive knowledge and experience in troubleshooting Windows errors– Access to reliable technical support
– Ability to identify complex underlying issues– Assistance from experts familiar with Windows
– Access to advanced diagnostic tools and resources– Guidance in resolving lock violation errors
– Personalized solutions tailored to your specific system– Time-saving solutions to minimize downtime
– Peace of mind knowing your issue will be resolved– Expert advice on preventing future lock violation errors

When consulting a technician, make sure to provide them with detailed information about the error, the troubleshooting steps you’ve already taken, and any relevant system configurations. This will help them quickly identify the root cause of the issue and provide you with the most effective solutions.

Remember, seeking professional help doesn’t indicate a lack of expertise on your part. Windows errors can sometimes require specialized knowledge and diagnostic tools to resolve. By reaching out to professionals, you can ensure a faster and more efficient resolution to the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error, allowing you to continue using your computer without disruptions.

Tips to Optimize Windows Performance

In addition to fixing the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error, there are other steps you can take to optimize your Windows performance and enhance the overall speed and efficiency of your PC.

Here are some tips to help you optimize your Windows performance:

  1. Clean up your hard drive: Remove unnecessary files and programs that can slow down your system.
  2. Run regular disk cleanup and defragmentation: This improves file access speed and ensures your files are organized for better performance.
  3. Keep your device drivers up to date: Check for updates from the manufacturer’s website regularly to ensure compatibility and address performance issues.
  4. Disable unnecessary startup programs: This can significantly improve boot time and overall system responsiveness.
  5. Increase your PC’s RAM: If your computer is running low on memory, adding more RAM can improve multitasking capabilities and enhance performance.
  6. Consider upgrading to a solid-state drive (SSD): An SSD provides faster read/write speeds compared to traditional hard drives, resulting in improved performance and quicker data access.
  7. Regularly check for and install Windows updates: Updates often include performance enhancements and bug fixes that can optimize your system.

By implementing these tips and optimizing your Windows performance, you can achieve a faster and more efficient computing experience.


In conclusion, the 0x00000021 ERROR_LOCK_VIOLATION error is a common Windows issue that can cause difficulties in accessing files. However, by following the troubleshooting steps provided in this article, you can successfully resolve this error and fix the lock violation issue on your system.

It is also crucial to implement preventive measures to minimize the chances of encountering this error in the future. By avoiding concurrent access to files, properly closing applications, and keeping your operating system up to date, you can significantly reduce the occurrence of lock violation errors.

If you find yourself unable to resolve the error using the troubleshooting steps, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. Whether it’s reaching out to Microsoft support or consulting with a qualified technician, they can provide you with advanced solutions tailored to your specific system and configuration.

Furthermore, optimizing your Windows performance is not only essential for resolving the lock violation error but also for enhancing your overall computing experience. By regularly cleaning up your hard drive, keeping device drivers up to date, and installing Windows updates, you can enjoy improved system speed, efficiency, and multitasking capabilities.

Nilesh Kamble is Certified in Microsoft & GCP, having 13+ Years of Experience in IT Industry. As a Senior IT Employee, having vast experience on Windows Server, Windows Client, Powershell, Cloud Technologies. Passionate about Laptop, Mobiles & Other emerging Technologies.