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Argh! This is so annoying. You would've thought that Windows would have gotten this right by now.

I've got a 2TB USB3 external (obviously) HD that I want to eject, since when I mounted it last time it complained about an unclean dismount (don't remember what the exact message was).

So I closed all the application that I was using to access that drive and then proceeded to eject the drive, at which point I get a:

Problem Ejecting USB Mass Storage Device                                   |_X_|

  /|\  This device is currently in use.  Close any programs or windows that
 /_'_\ might be using the device, and then try again.

                                                                     [   OK   ]


I used Process Explorer and I get a bunch of processes which I closed or killed (like, wtf is Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service? I didn't start that. PresentationFontCache.exe? NO. avgidsagent.exe? Eff off!)

Now I just have System, services, and lsass processes running which are windows processes, so should be able to handle this problem, but it doesn't! Grrrr.

Any idea what to do with this crap? I can't just shut these down. And I'm tired of potentially playing Russian Roulette with my data. Why hasn't this been fixed in windows by now? This is so annoying!!

Running Windows 7 HP SP1

Here are the processes: img1 img2 img3

share|improve this question
Might be your anti-virus, or might just be Windows itself updating the NTFS journal on the drive. USB Safely Remove/Zentimo (non-free) have a force eject option (not recommended), but you may as well use Process Explorer to terminate the open handles. You can also try the command-line RemoveDrive utility. If all else fails and write caching is disabled for the drive so it's optimised for quick removal, you can disconnect without safely removing first. Otherwise for complete safety shut down and then disconnect the drive (which of course is a real PITA). – Karan Jul 6 '13 at 4:04
Not AV. Already stated that it was shutdown (avgidsagent.exe), and if it was the journal, then Windows should deal with this through an eject, as that's what its for. I'll take a look at these other utilities, but I've looked at some before and they just seem try to terminate processes. Maybe something new has come out on the market? Not looking to turn off cache or do a shutdown, that's just stupid :(. Winblows should have this corrected by now, as this has always been an issue. – Adrian Jul 6 '13 at 10:33

I too have had trouble ejecting drives, but usually when I'm doing it from the task bar. Sometimes I have to go to the start button -> devices and printers -> click the drive and click eject at the top. It works 9/10 for me from there, so maybe give that a try.

share|improve this answer
Yeah, I had done it from the system tray. When I did it as you described (Ohhhhhh I so need to bang my head or better yet, a M$ reps or programmer's or designer's head so hard!!), it spun up the drive, gave me that window I stated above, then I heard a da-dun (disconnect) and then a dun-da (connect) and then I get !Do you want to scan and fix Expansion Drive (E)?. Yes, windows, if you had a neck, I would so strangle it!!!! – Adrian Jul 6 '13 at 1:46
I'm not sure if I should check this as an answer as it (Windows) still screwed up. Hrm... – Adrian Jul 6 '13 at 1:50
Check tasklist /svc in CMD to see what services are tied to those svchosts and other process. – Grant Jul 6 '13 at 2:02
@Adrian The problem of USB disconnecting then connecting is well known and may have several causes. Google "usb disconnect reconnect" – Jan Doggen Jul 6 '13 at 14:31

I use a trick that may or may not be safe: Start > [Shut Down Menu>] > Sleep. Then when the PC goes to sleep, yoink!

share|improve this answer
I have long wondered if this is safe, as the drive still shows as locked if you wake up the system without disconnecting it. – RockPaperLizard Jul 20 at 21:50

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