Server 2008 - lock and unlock files / filders as users access the close them

We have a client with Server 2008 installed and running a couple of applications that don't support file locking.  So one user can be using a certain file and the system will allow another to access it.  The problem is that the editing is not in real time so the commit only happens when the user closes that file.  When two or more people are editing the file at the same time, when the first one exits his changes are saved.  Now when the next exits his commit replaces all the changes the original editor made saving only the new edits that user had made and so on.

My question:  Is there a way to lock a folder (not just a single file) so that while one user is in it then another is denied access until the first user closes that folder?  i.e. Only allow one user at a time to access any given folder(s)
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Trent SmithCommented:
What type of files are you having issues with?
Sounded like the problem could be that it's not the applications doesn't support file locking but as you said that the editing is not in real-time.  That to me sounded as if when you open the application it create a temporary cache/file copy in the user's machine (like when you open a text file, notepad for example) then it writes back when closed or when the user chose to update the info.

I don't know of any tool that can lock a file or folder the way you want.  The lock flag should have been integrated in the application programming.

PBTechPartnersAuthor Commented:
cookies80 - Both are legacy accounting systems that I wouldn't be given the ability to edit at least not until an extensive 3 to 6 month internal "battle" was waged and won.

Wayne88 - caching is exactly what's happening and I couldn't agree more with the application doing the file locking but I stand a better chance of winning the lottery than getting the application modified.
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Trent SmithCommented:
The reason I was asking was to see if it was something like a legacy program.  I have no idea how you can lock those down without causing more issues for yourself.  Can you put the database into a single user mode instead of a multi user mode?
PBTechPartners, out curiosity - how was your customer using this accounting software before 2008?  Is the problem with Windows 2008 or was it always a problem?
PBTechPartnersAuthor Commented:
Thanks cookies80  -  I wish it was a typical db such as Oracles where I could control access from the backend end but it's not.

Wayne88 - it's always been a problem.   A nice "Who is in the xyz - log out I need to use it now" can be heard echoing thru the halls quite often.
Sorry PBTechPartners, I am out of ideas.  It's time for them to upgrade their accounting software :)
Trent SmithCommented:
PBTechPartners Sorry to say but I don't have an other ideas on how to solve this.    I agree it looks like it is time to upgrade some accounting software.

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Windows Server 2008

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