“Almost everyone has had the unpleasant experience of using a computer that a friend or family member forgot to log out of.
Learn how to fix The Someone Else Is Still Using This PC Error in Windows 10″.
I recently encountered a strange issue and received several inquiries from Windows users. According to a user, “when attempting to shut down my PC, I keep receiving the notification, “Someone Else Is Still Using This PC.
This error occurs when another person is already signed in to a computer with a different Windows user account. However, sometimes the condition may appear out of the blue with no apparent cause.
If you get someone Else Is Still Using This PC Error in Windows 10/11, here are some techniques to resolve the issue.
What Are The Causes Of ‘Someone Else Is Still Using This PC’ Error
A warning message ‘Someone else is still using this PC’ may be displayed if you shut down or restart your computer while it appears that another user is still using it. This message appears when more than one user account has been set up on a Windows computer.
Moreover, this message seems suspicious as no other user is present on the computer in this case. Several factors can cause the error message “Someone else is still using this PC.” These factors include:
1. Change In An Option For Signing In
A modification to the Sign-in options menu has been primarily responsible for this issue. Consequently, the machine is now required to use the sign-in information to automatically set up the device and reopen the program as a result of this change.
2. Still Connected To The Previous User
A prior user of this computer failed to log off. Consequently, there were several factors, including an interruption caused by the system or the user’s choice.
3. Installing Windows Updates Now In The Background
When you are experiencing this issue and using Windows 10, your OS may have made a mistake. Accordingly, this is because it connects to a different user when installing one or more upgrades in the background.
How To Fix The Someone Else Is Still Using This PC Error In Windows
- Modify the Sign-in settings
- Disconnect previously logged-in users
- Install all pending Windows 10 updates
- Disable Third-Party Antivirus
- Run Some SFC and DISM System Scans
- Scan your computer for viruses
- Securing the sign-in process
- Check the Event Viewer for failed login attempts
- Fix user account problems by running System Restore
1. Modify The Sign-In Settings
Typically, this error occurs after the Sign-in options have been changed. As a consequence, this is one of the leading reasons for the error ‘Someone else is still using this PC.’
The Privacy settings must be adjusted in order to resolve this error.
- Navigate to the Settings app menu.
- Select the Accounts option.
- Then select the Sign-in options from the left menu.
- Also, you can open it by pressing Win + R to access the Run dialog box and enter ms-settings: sign-in options to open the Sign-in options directly.
- Drop down the menu and scroll to the Privacy option.
- In the Privacy section, disable the Use my sign-in info to automatically finish setting up my device after an update or restart option.
- You should reboot your computer to verify that the error has been resolved.
2. Disconnect Previously Logged-in Users
When the “Someone else is still using this pc” error in windows occurs, it may also be due to an incomplete log-off of the previous user.
You may be able to rectify the issue by disconnecting the user who is preventing the shutdown or restart in Task Manager.
- Open Task Manager by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Enter on your keyboard.
- From the above menu, click on the Users tab.
- Right-click on the user you no longer wish to connect to and select Disconnect.
3. Install All Pending Windows 10 Updates
A known Windows 10 bug may be causing this issue. You may experience this problem if you restart your PC during a background Windows update. When that occurs, the operating system may incorrectly detect a second user on the computer.
- Go to the Settings option.
- Select Windows Update from the list above.
- Check to see whether any Windows updates screens are currently being downloaded. Complete the process by following the instructions on the screen.
- Follow the previous step that caused the ‘Someone else is still using this PC’ error after installing the Windows update.
4. Disable Third-Party Antivirus
The most common cause of the ‘Someone else is using this PC’ error is a third-party antivirus application, which can interfere with the operating system.
Some users reported that they could resolve the issue by uninstalling their antivirus software. Changing to a better security program may prevent future problems, or Windows Defender is a viable option.
- Go to Settings.
- Select Apps from the menu.
- In the Apps and Features section, locate antivirus software by dragging the slider down.
- Click on the antivirus software icon you want to remove.
- Press the Uninstall button.
- As soon as the antivirus is uninstalled, restart the computer and see if the issue is resolved. If not, continue with the following method.
5. Run Some SFC and DISM System Scans
A system bug may also be causing the “Someone else is still using this PC” error in Windows. The correct way to identify and resolve such cases is to run a system scan using the integrated troubleshooting utilities provided by Windows.
The SFC procedure replaces faulty files with healthy counterparts, while DISM resolves corruption issues in the Windows component store files, enabling the SFC process to function correctly.
Steps To Run SFC Scan
Follow the steps below to run the SFC scan:
- Select PowerShell (Admin) by pressing Win+X on the keyboard.
- When the command prompt pops up, type sfc /scannow a and press the enter key.
- Check if the issue has been resolved after the process is complete.
Steps To Run DISM Scan
To run the DISM command on your computer, follow the steps below:
- To open the Run window, press Win + R on your keyboard.
- Type “cmd” and press the Ctrl + Shift + Enter keys on your keyboard to launch the Administrative Command Prompt.
- Click Yes if you are prompted to allow the Command Prompt to make changes to your device.
- Type the following two commands into the Command Prompt and press Enter when you reach one of them:
|Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanupDism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth|
- Restart your computer after the commands have completed running.
6. Scan Your Computer For Viruses
If you see a warning message while shutting down your system, your system may be infected with viruses or malware.
Essentially, this is because there is only one user account. In this situation, you need to run an antivirus and antimalware scan.
- Open Settings on your PC.
- Select the Update and Security option.
- Choose Windows Security from the left.
- Click on Virus & Thread Protection.
- A new window will open then you need to select the Quick Scan button to start the virus scan process.
7. Securing the sign-in process
The Windows operating system provides a secure sign-in feature that enables users to gain access to their desktop by clicking Ctrl + Alt + Delete on their lock screen to increase user security.
- To access the User Accounts panel, open the Run dialog box (Windows + R) by typing “netplwiz” in the search box.
- In the above menu, click on the “Advanced” tab.
- Check the box for “Secure sign-in,” after which all attempts to sign in will require the user to use the Ctrl + Alt + Delete combination to proceed.
- When you want to unlock your PC, instead of pressing Ctrl + Alt + Delete, press the volume down button and power buttons simultaneously.
8. Check The Event Viewer For Failed Login Attempts
Using Windows Event Viewer, you can monitor all of the activity occurring on your computer, including background processes and everything happening on your computer.
The audit capabilities of this software will allow you to keep track of all successful and failed login attempts you make.
- Find the “Event Viewer” application in the search bar and run it as an administrator.
- Event Viewer provides a quick overview of all errors in your window pane. The error does not need to be addressed as long as it is not labeled as “critical.” If there are any errors related to the user’s login, please check the error pane.
- The sidebar’s Windows Logs -> Security section will provide a list of recent security-related events if no useful login instances are displayed.
- Consider the “Logon” task category. There will be an event ID, such as 4624, which pertains to all successful and unsuccessful attempts to access Windows.
- Whenever the logon event displays an “audit failure” in the details pane, this may be an indication that your device is experiencing problems with user authentication.
- Under the “Details” tab, confirm that the failed login is associated with a different user account. You can see the local user account under “TargetUserName.”
- Take a look at your PC’s local user account and consider removing it if it is error-prone.
Alternatively, you may follow the steps discussed earlier to resolve the issue if the failed login is due to a third-party antivirus or an uncompleted update or operation.
9. Fix User Account Problems By Running System Restore
In the event that you are unsure what is causing the user authentication problems on your device, and if the Event Viewer audit (see above) does not provide sufficient information regarding how the problem is caused, then you may want to consider performing a System Restore in order to determine what is causing the issue.
- Open the Settings menu on your PC.
- Choose the Update and Security option.
- Click on the Recovery option on the left side.
- Under Reset this PC, click on the Get started button to run a system restore.