How to check for open files on Windows Server 2012

Issue: you need the fastest and easiest method to check for users that have files open on Windows Server 2012
1) Launch the search box by hitting Winkey+Q
2) type ‘management’, and select the search result “computer management”
3) Expand Shared Folders > Open Files

You can now see a list of all files open by end users


5 thoughts on “How to check for open files on Windows Server 2012

  1. Kyle

    We are having an issue with Server 2012 R2 where files are still showing ‘Open’ long after the user closes them. I have been pulling my hair out!
    Disabling caching of Thumbs.db
    Disabled any sort of caching on the file share.

    Any ideas?

    1. Chris Harris Post author

      You will only see open folders if the users have mapped drives to shares/folders and don’t have any actual files open. Or users have browsed to folders via shares or mapped drives but don’t have actual files open. I included a screenshot of the open files node in computer management incase it’s helpful.

  2. Kriss Tariske

    Hello, is there any software to alert me to OPEN FILES?

    I dicovered a tech in desktop support was somehow connected to my server, and want to be alerted if it happens again. I suppose i could just leave the open file sessions window open and hit refresh, any other way?

    1. Chris Harris Post author

      Hi Kriss, you could use share/file permissions to prevent the tech from connecting, but I’m assuming that you need them to be able to connect you just don’t want them accidentally leaving files open. I’m not sure of a way other than leaving the computer management window open. You can use NTFS auditing of files being opened but again, it sounds like this person is allowed to open the files you just want them closing when they are done, that’s tough to accomplish other than manually checking. Let me know what solution you come up with!


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