backing up to a external hard drive

  Ted K 12:08 08 Feb 2007

I have an external hard drive to back up on to, a Freecom FHD-2. My OS is Xp Pro SP 2
and I use Norton Internet Security 2007,Spybot and AVG anti spyware and Sophos anti root kit scan. I used to have no problem doing a backup but now I get the following error msg;
"Cannot get exclusive access to hard disk drives. Please make sure that Windows Computer Management Consol or other software that locks the hard drives are not running"
I have turned off the Norton package and my screensaver, but I am at a loss as to what or how to turn off any other software locking the drives. Can anyone help? It used to be so easy to do a back up, but now I am not able to. I have not been able to do a backup for some months now and I dont know the answer to the question “Which applications have been installed since the backup programme was working OK” Can anyone help? What is this management consol and how do I turn it off?

  anniesboy68 12:31 08 Feb 2007

First of all open My computer and see if the external drive is listed. Management console .....Right click My Computer, go to, manage, click on disk management. That will get you to the disk management.

  Ted K 15:58 08 Feb 2007

I have followed your instruction and got to Computer Management which gives me ,1 System Tools, 2 Storage, or 3 Services and Applications, but Im not clear what I have to turn off, and looking in Storage I have found my Hard Drive (C) but all it tells me is that its healthy. Where do I go from here.

  anniesboy68 16:24 08 Feb 2007

Sorry cannot help any more, I only pointed you to the cptr management. Is your drive showing??

  Ted K 16:36 08 Feb 2007

Yes my external Freecom drive is shown OK. What other software could "lock" the hard drive? Anyone know? I need all the help I can get!

  Diemmess 16:40 08 Feb 2007

Like you the error message means little to me.

Two points-

1) It does seem to be a tad overkill to have so much anti malware running. You may be getting some over zealous protection.
Have you added or changed any of the four you named?

2) "Back up" can mean a host of things, from merely copying a few valuable files, to a complete disk image which requires special software.
Which are you trying to do?

  Ted K 17:34 08 Feb 2007

The backup I am trying to is a complete disk backup and the software which came with the external drive is Acronis, which has always worked very well.
Out of the anti malware I have on my system, which do you think I do not need, as most advice seems to be that no one can pick up all malware so its best to have a few.

  anniesboy68 19:46 08 Feb 2007

How is the drive connected, usb, or firewire?. It might be worth trying to disconnect, rebooting minus the drive, reconnect, and reboot. This sometimes clears a multitude of sins!!!

  Ted K 20:12 08 Feb 2007

The drive is connected via USB and I have removed the software and reinstalled it again to no avail. The computer can find the drive no problem. The drive software (Acronis) will start, ask what I want to do, and then I select do a total backup of drive C. It is then that the error msg comes up telling me " Can not get exclusive access" ect ect. I have turned off the screensaver and Norton Internet Security and as this has a firewall I do not have Windows firewall turned on. I just do not know what else is running, how to find out, or how to turn anything off!

  Diemmess 09:31 09 Feb 2007

Just my opinion, but you have Norton and AVG trying to do the same thing and Sophos as well.

"Horses for Courses" and there may be good reasons for your anxiety to stay clean, but I would choose one good AV and firewall, uninstall any others. (Spybot is harmless, a morale booster which does not interfere with the system).

  Bagsey 10:49 09 Feb 2007

Looking at your list of AV software it seems to me that you have 3 AV programs running. It is the general advice never to have more than one. So I would remove 2 of those and see if AV clashes are the cause of your problem.

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