Larry, the circumstances that you describe in 1) below should not happen.
NTUSER.DAT is the user part of the registry (everything under the key
HKEY_CURRENT_USER). If this is happening it's because some process that you
started (or that started automatically) while you were logged on as Larry
locked a portion of the registry and never released the lock. Naughty software.
If you really want to troubleshoot this, there is a way to do it. You need a
utility program called oh.exe from the Windows server resource kit. When you
first run oh, it will set a system flag that tells the OS to track every open
resource handle on the system. After you reboot you can then run oh.exe again
from the admin account and see what process has locked the file "\documents and
settings\larry\ntuser.dat". Most likely its one that is not too important,
like a taskbar tray notification process or an application startup helper
process like qttask.exe for Quick Time.
Quoting "Rohr, Rob" <[log in to unmask]>:
> Possible reason for >>1)
> For recovery purposes, every time a user successfully logs on to Windows, a
> copy of the registry is stored in the "Last known good". This way, if you
> replace your video drivers with a pile of pudding, you can revert to "Last
> known good" on boot and start up with the old drivers, avoiding a messy
> I don't know this for sure, but it is possible that, rather than make a
> separate copy of the registry, it would save a pointer, and put a lock on the
> last known good. If true, the reason you were able to delete the profile is
> not because of the reboot, but rather the successful logon, moving the
> pointer and lock to the NTUSER.DAT of the Administrator user.
> Without the precise error message for the second case, I don't have any quick
> Rob Rohr mailto:[log in to unmask]
> UVM - School of Business Administration
> 230 Kalkin Hall : (802) 656-0714
> Find My Office: http://www.bsad.uvm.edu/map/?find=rohr
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Technology Discussion at UVM [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf
> Of Larry Kost
> Sent: Monday, February 21, 2005 10:23 AM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: ??
> Two questions which I think might be related. Both are on systems running
> Windows XP with SP2.
> 1) I log on as "Larry" then log off. I log on as Administrator and try to
> move or delete the profile for "Larry" and get the message that NTUSER.DAT
> is in use by another user. If I re-boot, the problem goes away.
> 2) I have a PC used by the instructors in a classroom. Occasionally when
> someone tries to log on they get a message that their profile can't be used
> (the profile is there). I don't recall the exact message as every time I
> go over and try it things work okay but others are still having this
> problem. Once again, re-booting fixes it. Then for a while all seems okay.
> A solution (explanation) would be great but if not, a suggestion on where
> to look. I did go to the Microsoft Web site but not knowing the exact
> message made it a bit hard to search.
> Larry Kost