Detecting source of external drive activity
Posted on 2009-04-24
How do I determine which process / application is accessing an external hard drive?
I attach my external hard drive via USB to my laptop (XP SP2).
My laptop was recently re-installed after the internal hard drive crashed.
(Currently no problems with any software).
Often it is idle for hours, but all of a sudden there's activity on the external drive.
I have nothing open or mounted from the external hard drive (I only use it to make backups at the end of the day - all files on the drive are ZIPed).
My AntiVirus application is also idle (no scans).
When I try to "Safely Remove Hardware" from the System Tray, it fails with this message:
"The device 'Generic volume' cannot be stopped right now..." (I've tried this several times in succession)
At this stage I haven't accessed the drive at all.
Even when I kill the "Explorer" process in Task Manager, and then restart the "Explorer" process, the external drive still shows activity and I'm not able to un-mount it.
I've run virus scans on the drive, and no virus was found.