fix quickbooks the file exists error

User Query: Why is this, I unable to close QuickBooks, locked up just after this message popped up (The file you specified cannot be opened. Make sure that it is not being used by another program or a read only file. The windows error was “The File Exists”).

QuickBooks desktop company file may not open at certain times. An error related to the company file or the network connection can be a cause for the QuickBooks Error The File Exists. However, in most instances, it is just QuickBooks reading the files wrong. In this article, you will learn more about resolving this error.

Update QuickBooks

Most QuickBooks users who failed or unable to open company file, contact us, we’re able to resolve QuickBooks the windows error was the file exists error simply by installing the latest updates for QuickBooks on their system. Updates released by QuickBooks often contain patches that fix errors caused by previous updates.

Read This: QuickBooks Failed After Update – How to Save Company File?

To update QuickBooks and install all the latest updates, follow the steps provided below:

quickbooks file exists warning message
The File Exists
  1. Go to Help and Select Update QuickBooks.
  2. Click on Update Now.
  3. Select Reset all to delete all the previously downloaded update files, ensuring that no conflict arises while installing the software.
  4. When ready, click on Get Updates.
  5. Restart QuickBooks when you’re ready to install the updates.

You’ve successfully updated your accounting software. Now, you need to check for the error. Launch QuickBooks and open the company file with which you were getting the error.

Read This: QuickBooks POS Unable to Load or Open – What to Do?

Run as Administrator

Due to a lack of admin privileges, QuickBooks may be unable to launch all program files properly, leading to the QuickBooks the file exists error. In such cases, simply providing the accounting software with specific rights can resolve the error.

To do so, follow the steps provided below:

  1. Go to the Start menu and type in ‘QuickBooks’.
  2. Right click on the QuickBooks icon.
  3. Select Run as the Administrator.

This should provide QuickBooks with enough admin rights to make changes to important program files. Further, certain previously blocked ports will now be accessible to the software. We also recommend that you mark all the updates before downloading them. Missing out on an important update can lead to unknown errors.

User Account Control Settings

Even after giving admin authority to QuickBooks, windows can block it from accessing all program files and dependencies. Therefore, you should provide full control to QuickBooks. To do so and resolve QuickBooks Error The File Exists, follow the steps provided below:

  1. Right click on the QuickBooks application file.
  2. Click on Properties.
  3. From the Security tab, select Edit.
  4. Click on Add. Mark Everyone and hit Ok.
  5. From the provided options, select Full Control and click on Apply.
  6. Repeat the same steps and select Users rather than Everyone.
  7. Go to the Control Panel and click on UAC.
  8. Click on Change User Account Control.
  9. Click on Turn off UAC and hit Ok.

Now you need to configure the firewall settings. With correct firewall settings, QuickBooks will be able to properly connect to any company files stored on a server. To create firewall rules, follow the steps provided below:

  1. In the Start menu, type in ‘Windows Firewall’ and hit Enter.
  2. Click on Advanced Settings
  3. Select Inbound Rules, then New.
  4. Enter the Port for which you want to set the rule.
  5. Select QuickBooks as the program for which you’re setting up QuickBooks.
  6. Select TCP.
  7. Select Allow the Connection and hit Next.
  8. After marking all the profiles, select Next.
  9. Input a name and description for the rule. This will help you in later identifying the custom rule.
  10. Click on Finish.
  11. Repeat the steps to create Outbound Rules for QuickBooks accounting software.

In the process to resolve QuickBooks Error ‘The File Exists’, you may encounter some network issues. However, simply creating inbound and outbound rules should resolve such network errors. Yet, if your internet connection isn’t working properly, then you may get an error. Also, contact your internet service provider if you cannot connect to the internet.

Repair QuickBooks When Windows Error The File Exists Occurs

Last option with users is to simply repair program files related to QuickBooks. You can do this via the control panel or the setup for QuickBooks Desktop. We recommend that you rely on the option through the control panel. To repair program files related to QuickBooks and resolve QuickBooks Error ‘The File Exists’, follow the steps provided below:

  1. Go to the Control Panel.
  2. Select Programs and Features.
  3. Select Uninstall a Program.
  4. Select QuickBooks and choose Repair.
  5. Follow on-screen instructions.
  6. Click on Finish.

Restart your system. This should resolve the error if the company file isn’t damaged. After repairing the software, you can launch it and open your company file. You’ll find all your accounting data intact, but you’ll have to reset your preferences and recreate the templates.

To know more or to get QuickBooks Error ‘The File Exists’ resolved, you can get in touch with our experts at LIVE CHAT.

Read This: Opening and Closing an Existing Company File in QuickBooks.


Q. I’ve repaired the software by following the steps given in this article. However, I’m still getting the error. What should I do?

A. You can get in touch with our experts, and they can resolve the error for you.

Q. What data will I lose if I reinstall QuickBooks?

A. You won’t lose any of your accounting data. However, after reinstalling QuickBooks, you’ll have to reset your preferences and recreate custom templates and lists.

Q. My software locked up after error, QuickBooks the windows error was the file exists, what to do?

A. It’s best if you contact our QuickBooks Desktop Support team, who can go over the details with you and ensure that you get the proper answer. Our QuickBooks experts are equipped with the tools necessary to get you back up and running.

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