Could not initialize Photoshop because the file is locked

Discussion in 'Photoshop Tutorials' started by Robert Premuz, Jul 21, 2004.

  1. On MS Windows XP Professional (SP1) when a limited user tries to start
    Adobe Photoshop CS v.8.0 he gets the following error message:
    "Could not initialize Photoshop because the file is locked.
    Use the 'Properties' command in the Windows Explorer to unlock the file."

    It seems that the cause of the problem is the location for Photoshop
    scratch file (a kind of temporary file. In Photoshop CS you can set the
    volumes (i.e. partitions) for scratch files in the following way:
    Edit -> Preferences -> Plug-Ins & Scratch Disks
    You can define up to four scratch volumes.

    Here is how the problem happened in my case:
    The Photoshop CS v.8.0 was installed by an administrator on the system
    partition, i.e. on the partition where the Windows folder is located
    (also the "Documents and Settings" and "Program Files" folders) -- by
    default this is the C: partition.
    When the Photoshop was first started by a limited user account (who
    was not member of the local administrators group) he got the following
    "You currently have Adobe Photoshop's primary Scratch and Windows'
    primary paging file on the same volume, which can result in reduced
    performance. It is recommended that you set Adobe Photoshop's primary
    Scratch volume to be on a different volume, preferably on a different
    physical drive."

    Following that recommendation the user set the Photoshop first scratch
    volume to D:\ (this was the second hard disk on his PC). But after
    closing Photoshop he was unable to start it again because of the
    error, "Could not initialize Photoshop because the file is locked ..."

    The problem is that the Photoshop is unable to create the scratch file
    on the D: partition as in Windows XP limited users don't have right by
    default to create files on the root of a partition (D:\).

    On the other hand if the first scratch volume is set to "Startup",
    then Photoshop opens the scratch file on the partition where it was
    installed, which is here the system partition. More precisely, in that
    case Photoshop opens the scratch file in the temporary folder pointed
    by the TEMP and TMP Windows environment variables. By default, these
    variables have the value, "%USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Temp" where
    %USERPROFILE% is another Windows environment variable that points to
    the user profile folder, e.g. "C:\Documents and %Settings\user_name".

    Conclusion: if you want to have the Photoshop scratch file on a
    partition which is not the system partition, you also have to have
    right to write files to the root of that partition.

    If you are not allowed to have that right, then as a workaround you
    can restore the Photoshop default user preferences by renaming or
    deleting the "Adobe Photoshop CS Prefs.psp" file in your user profile
    folder -- more precisely in the folder,
    %USERPROFILE%\Application Data\Adobe\Photoshop\8.0\Adobe Photoshop CS Settings\
    (you can copy the path and open it in the Windows Explorer).

    In my opinion this is a bug in Photoshop. When user changes the
    scratch drives, Photoshop should check if it is able to open a file on
    the corresponding location before allowing the change. Also, if it is
    unable to open the scratch file afterwards, it should try to open the
    file at another location.
    According to some previous articles in the news groups, this bug also
    existed in some previous versions of Photoshop and it is strange that
    it hasn't been corrected yet.

    -- rpr. /Robert Premuz/
    Robert Premuz, Jul 21, 2004
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  2. Robert Premuz


    Nov 22, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Try it

    I have tried million manual solutions but nothing helped,use a small tool available at to unlock it and render it useable
    jeename, Nov 22, 2010
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