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many files get "error 5: Access is denied"

spthomas - December 7, 2009 - 12:24pm
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I have started getting a lot of errors when I sync my thumbdrive to the harddrive. I did this for quite a while with no errors. The errors are mostly in this fomat:

"Failed to Copy File to (error 5: Access Denied)"
"Failed to open File (error 5: Access Denied)"

And a few other failures that don't involve Toucan.tmp but seem related.

The files aren't readonly, and they're not OS files. They're just files created or updated by a variety of applications (word, excel, some modeling tools, etc).

I'm trying to do a Sync Equalise with "retain timestamps" and "retain attributes" turned on.

It hasn't always done this, but it's consistent across two different computers, syncing different files using a different syn Job, in the last few weeks.

I just upgraded from Toucan version 2.1.0 to 2.2.1, with no difference.

Neither path is in the Programs or Windows directory.

I am using it on one Windows XP machine and on a separate Windows 7 machine, with the same results.
This seems to revolve around the Toucan.tmp files.

( categories: )

OK here

Welcome to PortableApps!

I haven't seen any of the errors you describe, but they are usually due to files being in-use (locked) by other applications.

For instance, you can't back up the entire FirefoxPortable profile directory if FirefoxPortable is currently running. Same with ThunderbirdPortable.

Some programs might not appear to be running, but have a system-tray component that remains active, and will therefore be "in use".

Check to make sure you aren't running into those kinds of issues.

Edit: Oh, forgot to mention that UAC might have something to do with problems on Vista and 7 machines.

neutron1132 (at) usa (dot) com

Error 5: Unable to Open

Hmmm... It appears it's all one file type, an application specific file called .erwin that is used by a modeling tool. I checked and the application is not open, not in the system tray, and not running as a process (using Task List). I also rebooted the PC and checked it right away after restarting. It still caused the errors.

Could there be something about this file type that Toucan doesn't like?

Read only?

Are these files marked read-only?

I played with Toucan using the settings you mentioned, Sync, Equalise, Retain Timestamps, Retain Attributes.

It seems: if the source files were read-only, and the destination files were missing, then the copy process worked, but the next step (resetting the timestamp from "now" to what it used to be) fails because the file is read-only, and the final step (retain attributes) fails because the file is read-only.

I'm sure there's plenty more variations that I didn't try that might also fail, so I can't say for sure, but are the source or destination files marked read-only?

If they are, try unmarking them and then running the same job to see what happens.

neutron1132 (at) usa (dot) com

You're right, unsetting the

You're right, unsetting the read-only attribute gets rid of those pesky errors. Seems like the solution would be for Toucan to ignore or override file access restrictions.


It sure seems like if you're copying the file, retaining the read-only flag, and then try to do something that runs afoul of the read-only flag, then the steps are either out of order or the process could be manipulated to drop and then reset the flag.

neutron1132 (at) usa (dot) com

Me too

I've also encountered these errors, so you are not alone. In fact I get the "failed to open" with *all* files. UAC can't be since I'm running XP and the files were not in use.

More details in my post regarding the issues I've encounted running 2.2.1.

Backup vs Sync

I'd like to apologize to both of you... I failed to correctly read and understand the issue.

I thought the question was about backup but it is about sync.

I'm presently not using Toucan for sync procedures.

neutron1132 (at) usa (dot) com

Same here, but here are some important points

  1. Each error is displayed twice ("1) Failed to copy X to Y. 2) Failed to copy X"). Please display it just once.
  2. Toucan can back up itself while in use. But please internally exclude Toucan.tmp by default. No one should ever need to back it up. Actually, without exluding it, it actually copies itself around into random folders causing them to be excluded...


to say I will try and get a pre-release of the next release out as soon as I can, thanks everyone for reporting the issue, sorry for the delay in getting it fixed.

Please don't forget my specific suggestions

Points 1) and 2).