How to delete Document Library folders that are “locked” or “checked out”…

I got a help desk case where the customer was trying to delete a folder from a document library. But every time she tried it, she got the error message below. I tried to delete it and got the same result. It didn’t matter if it was through the browser interface, the Explorer interface, or SharePoint Designer. No go…


I found the answer in the blog entry below:

Apparently it’s an issue of there still being documents in the library that have not yet had a major version published. To the person trying to delete the folder, it looks empty.  What you need to do is go into the Library Settings and take ownership of the files. You can then delete the entries, and after that the folder can be deleted.

Library Tools > Library > Library Settings > Permissions and Management > Manage files which have no checked in version:





Hopefully that will save you a bit of time if you run into the same situation…

7 responses to “How to delete Document Library folders that are “locked” or “checked out”…

  1. Thanks very much! This was so helpful!

  2. It did not work, getting same error and the files in explorer creating automatically.

  3. Thanks so much.

  4. Pingback: How To Delete Locked Folders | Khmer Bank

  5. Very clear explanation and solution!

  6. Excellent! Thanks. This worked perfectly.

  7. Thank you, I have just been banging my head on this for far longer than was needed!

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