Opening feature class. General function failure

Last Published: April 25, 2020

Error Message

After adding a shapefile into ArcMap, the following message appears and the layer does not draw:

"Error opening feature class. General function failure"


AppLockMgr.exe is not registered. ArcMap and ArcCatalog need this helper application for working with shapefiles.

Solution or Workaround

Register AppLockMgr.exe.

The instructions below include making changes to essential parts of your operating system. It is recommended that you backup your operating system and files, including the registry, before proceeding. Consult with a qualified computer systems professional, if necessary.

Esri cannot guarantee results from incorrect modifications while following these instructions; therefore, use caution and proceed at your own risk.
  1. Close ArcMap and ArcCatalog.
  2. Open the Command Prompt window: Start > Programs > Command Prompt.
  3. Browse to the ArcGIS bin folder.
cd c:\arcgis\arcexe81\bin
In the case of ArcGIS 9, the bin folder is located under C:\Program Files\ArcGIS, so the syntax would be as follows:
cd c:\Progra~1\ArcGIS\Bin
  1. Type: regsvr32 applockmgr.dll
  2. Type: applockmgr.exe /regserver
  3. Close the Command Prompt window.
  4. Start ArcMap, and add the shapefile data.

Article ID:000005097

  • ArcMap

Receive notifications and find solutions for new or common issues

Get summarized answers and video solutions from our new AI chatbot.

Download the Esri Support App

Discover more on this topic

Get help from ArcGIS experts

Contact technical support

Download the Esri Support App

Go to download options