How to Repair “The process cannot access the file” Problem in BitTorrent

We understand that many people still use the BitTorrent client, and that is ok. There are better tools that are 100% free and do not hide the features behind a paywall, but at the same time, BitTorrent is quite mature because of its age.

It has come to our attention that some users of the popular platform have recently encountered a strange error message: “The process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process” This error message usually appears when a user tries to download peer-to-peer files.

What causes the “Process cannot access the file” message in BitTorrent?

  • Torrent is being uploaded to a cloud storage application: This problem may occur if you have uploaded the torrent to a place that is also managed by a cloud storage service, like OneDrive, DropBox, or Drive.
  • The file is currently being used by another application: Most often, this error occurs when the torrent client tries to write to a file being accessed by another process or application. In most cases, this problem is caused by the Finder, a file indexing program, or an ISO mount program.
  • Third-Party AV Interference: Another scenario that has been shown to cause this error is AV package interference that quarantines parts of the torrent files (either for legitimate reasons or because of a false positive).

How to solve the “Process cannot access the file” message in BitTorrent?


Uninstalling a third-party antivirus package

  1. First, run the RUN dialog box by pressing the Windows + R key combination.
  2. Now type “appwiz.cpl” in the empty dialog box and click OK. A “Programs and Features” menu will appear on the screen.
  3. Scroll through the list of programs and features and find the antivirus package installed on your system.
  4. Right-click on the antivirus package and select Uninstall from the pop-up menu.
  5. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the removal and then restart your computer.
  6. Now check if the problem has been resolved or not.

Users who encounter the BitTorrent “Process cannot access file” error due to a third-party antivirus package can uninstall it and check whether the problem has been resolved or not. After uninstalling, your computer will automatically be switched to the standard combination of Windows Defender and Windows Firewall security.

Download the file from the OneDrive / Dropbox / Drive folder again

  1. First launch BitTorrent and right-click on the torrent that is causing the error message.
  2. Now select Delete from the context menu, then click .torrent + Delete Data.
  3. Double-click the .torrent file again, and then select a location that is out of range of your cloud storage.
  4. This definitely solves the BitTorrent “Process cannot access the file” error.

The solution requires that you first delete the torrent from your cloud storage. Then upload it again to its usual location via Drive, OneDrive, or DropBox.

Terminate all application processes that interfere with BitTorrent

  1. First, press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc key combination to open the Task Manager window.
  2. Now scroll through the list of processes in the Task Manager window, find the entries that might belong to the interfering applications, right-click on them and select End Task.

Frequently Asked Questions

The process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process. To fix this error: press Ctrl + Alt + Del, then click Task Manager. Make sure you are in the "Processes" tab.

Why won't my torrent download? One reason could be that your torrent client is blocked by the Windows firewall or an anti-virus program. If so, you can adjust the permission settings for the torrent client in your Windows firewall or antivirus program. Check if you can download the torrent file.

This is a common problem that occurs when the torrent client tries to write to a file being accessed by another process or application. Close any applications that can open such a file, including Finder and Explorer windows. If the problem persists, restart your torrent client.