# Copy files in use available from over a network

How can I copy files that are in use, and that are available over a network?

I am trying to copy some data files, but it always says that it cannot be copied because the file is in use.

I am using Windows XP, can someone please suggest a way to copy the in-use files over a network?

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In order to do that you would need access to the server the files are stored on, and then do what is known as a shadow copy. HoboCopy is a good tool for doing shadow copies.

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i did try it but i get this error "There was a COM failure" –  LiveEn Mar 17 '11 at 10:19
VSS snapshots cannot be created over the network. –  grawity Mar 17 '11 at 16:36
is there any other way to make a copy? –  LiveEn Mar 21 '11 at 13:26
Not without access to the actual physical server (or it's console through RDP) and an Administrative account. –  Majenko Mar 21 '11 at 13:31

You could try a combination of hobocopy and psexec. Something like this:

psexec \remotemachine -u username \path\to\hobocopy \path\to\src \path\to\dest

Which would run hobocopy on the remote machine, where it would be able to make shadow copies. Note that \path\to\src and \path\to\dest and \path\to\hobocopy are on the remote machine, although you could make the destination path something like \\localmachine\share\path\to\dest to do a network copy back over to your own machine. Seems like it would be easier just to copy it locally and then go retrieve the file as a separate step.

You'll need to make sure hobocopy is available on the remote machine, too, including installing the C runtime there if necessary.

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Also, the home of hobocopy (I wrote it) is here: candera.github.com/hobocopy. –  Craig Andera Mar 25 '11 at 10:55