How to find in whose logged into an Active Directory workstation + How to see whose using a shared Access Database

Posted: 07/12/2011

Every tried to update an Access database on a shared network drive and not been able to because someone has it open and it’s locked? It’s not always the easiest to find that person without the assistance of a sys admin which may not be around or have the time at that moment to help. There are a few options that you can try yourself (which may or may not work depending on services running on the remote workstation and/or your security permissions). For note, I use a program called “LDB View” (LDBView.exe) to see who has a shared Access database open. This program is old school, it’s been around since the mid 90’s and still works (our databases are still in Access 2003 format, I don’t know if this will work with .accdb databases). Anyway, it will give you just the name of the workstation that has the database open. You may still be able to download the LDBView.exe from Microsoft at (I’ve been using my copy for over a decade now) http://support.microsoft.com/kb/176670.

Method #1 to find the logged in user:

Use “nbtstat” from the command line. nbtstat –A 127.0.0.1

This method will only work if NetBIOS is enabled on the remote computer and the Messenger service is running. What does this mean for you? Likely, if it’s an XP machine, it could work. If it’s Vista/Windows 7, the messenger service will probably be stopped by default and it won’t return any information.

Method #2 to find the logged in user (this is the better, more reliable option but requires the download of a stand alone executable):

Download “PsLoggedOn” from http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb897545. This is a sysinternals utility provided via Microsoft. It is a standalone command line executable, the first time you use it you’ll accept the terms and then after that it’s good to go. The command line usage is like “psloggedon your-machine-name”. I suspect that this won’t work if you don’t have some sort of permissions to the remote workstation, I have not tried it that scenario.