Unlock a file that has been locked for editing


The file is locked by an user for editing. The SharePoint Administrator is unable to unlock the document in SharePoint Online.
Is there any option to unlock using Power Shell ?

5 Replies
best response confirmed by Juan Carlos González Martín (MVP)

Hello @Sajith G H,


See this post for more information: Cannot Release Lock on SharePoint Online File


In many cases the lock will timeout and in other cases a user may have the file locked via the "Upload Center".


I hope this helps.



This is an old post, but I just had this happen and wanted it here to maybe help other people.  Make sure the document isn't a .doc.  If that happens it will lock with just one person opening it every single time and will cause this error.

@Pam Parker  Does SharePoint have the same problem with .docx files.  I.e. lock them every time they are opened? We don't have check-in/out enabled.  The document is locked by me but I closed everything last night and it's still locked this morning.  This is happening on several files across the document library.

@louise1575  I've found it just to be with .doc files.  If your file is a .docx, you might temporarily turn off autosave (toggle it off in Word.  Upper left hand corner).  Close the file and see if that helps.  We've had autosave be the issue too sometimes.  

@Norman Young So how do we decrease the timeout period? I have seen cases where locks have persisted for days.