Offline files sync error “couldn’t access the file”

Published on 04/04/2012 by Wouter Makkinje

Filed under Microsoft Windows 7, Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2

Last modified 02/21/2015

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Scenario:

 

You have a domain controller running Windows Small Business Server 2003, and you have a domain joined Windows 7 Professional workstation. On this workstation is a user named Joe who uses a laptop and works remotely. Joe is the first at his company to have a Windows 7 computer that uses the Offline files feature. Joe cannot sync his files that are in his home network share. The following sync error appears: “The Process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process”

 


 Problem:

Every single file in the home share receives a sync error. When the user is disconnected from the network none of the files are available offline.


Solution:

This problem requires you to make changes to the registry of the server. Use caution when editing registry values!
Ensure that the files aren’t infact being locked by a document management software suite or a security software. Popular computers featuring this typ of software are Dell and HP lap tops.

Offline Files in Windows 7 require Oplock to improve performance. Since Windows 7 uses SMB2.0 and Server 2003 uses SMB1 this error will occur simply because of oplocks being disabled.

On the Windows Small Business 2003 Server:

  1. Open up Registry editor by hitting Windows+R key and typing regedit followed by enter.
  2. In the left hand side browse to the following key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\MRXSmb\Parameters.
  3. Create a DWORD value named OplocksDisabled and set it to (Not disabled).
  4. On the left hand side browse to the following key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanServer\Parameters.
  5. Change the following DWORD value EnableOplocks to 1 (Enabled).
Once this is done you will need to reboot the server for the changes to take affect. After the reboot is finished you should be able to sync Offline Files to a Vista / Windows 7 client.