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How do I fix dpkg errors after a failed upgrade?

So I was updating Ubuntu 11.10 and got a prompt that there was a new version of the vsftpd config. So I entered Z and started a new shell to copy my conf. But without thinking I press ctrl+c and I'm thrown out of the updater.

Following this I get an error:

dpkg: error: dpkg status database is locked by another process 

How can I get back or restart the updater?

marked as duplicate by Jorge Castro, Jjed, mikewhatever, jrg Apr 28 '12 at 1:11

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    After you do that, rerun the updater. – Jorge Castro Apr 27 '12 at 18:27
  • If I run: dpkg --configure -a | I get: dpkg: error: dpkg status database is locked by another process – Patrik Apr 27 '12 at 18:32
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    This lock persists across a system reboot? – irrational John Apr 27 '12 at 18:45
  • Haven't tried that. Didn't want to break more than I have. Will try it now. – Patrik Apr 27 '12 at 18:54
  • Seems to be working. I think I got back right where I left of. – Patrik Apr 27 '12 at 19:00