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"Could not save (file name) because the file is already in use or left open."

Feb 1, 2009 8:16 AM

  Latest reply: c.pfaffenbichler, Jul 18, 2013 11:18 PM
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 16, 2011 8:55 AM   in reply to Shlomit Heymann

    I had an idea and it worked for me:

    From within folder (or on desktop)

    View> Show View Options> un-check "show icon preview"

     

    G4 Mac running OS X 10.4.11 and Photoshop CS2.

     

    I was using Leaf Capture software for photography. Saved as tiff (8 bit and 16 bit) and opened directly in Photoshop. No other programs were running. Saved directly to desktop. Photoshop would not allow me to resave after making edits "Could not save because file is already in use..." I would have to save under different name or file type. Also, trash would not empty after deleting these original files for same error.

     

    I've looked forever without finding a solution until I thought of this. If anyone else can't find an answer, try this.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 12, 2011 4:28 PM   in reply to (derek_Kimball)

    I came here for the same issue, in my case closing Preview worked. Oddly enough, I did not have to file open in preview, but closing that app worked for me.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 20, 2012 4:02 PM   in reply to Kid Red

    Same issue with the recent update to PS6 on Windows platform.

     

    I suspect this is related to Photoshop's background file saving, since the files in question are never in use by another application. I think Photoshop doesn't know it's doing a background save or doesn't release the file properly when it's done.

     

    I'm turning off background save.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 20, 2012 4:31 PM   in reply to BJN3

    Notice that this discussion is from before the release of Photoshop CS6.

     

    It has to do with external applications (possibly including the OS) having the file locked/busy.

    It has nothing to do with background save.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 20, 2012 8:08 PM   in reply to Chris Cox

    I reviewed your comments through the thread, and the most likely issue sounds like another Adobe CS6 application has its foot in the door in error. I'll see if I can figure out which one and complain that direction. Thanks for steering me in the right direction.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 20, 2012 8:41 PM   in reply to Chris Cox

    Snow leopard it seems to me that if the file name is selected in a finder window, then I can't save. I have a similar issue deleting files from a NAS in the finder. I have to select a second item to be able to go back and delete the first item that I previously had selected because I would get "cant delete, file in use".  They are both very similar errors with a modifying files in the finder if SL if selected.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 6:03 AM   in reply to Chris Cox

    This has been an issue since Photoshop 6.0 (Windows).

    Adobe had always responded with it is a Windows fault, not Adobe.

    Still occurs with CS3 but not as often.

    Also occurs with Adobe InDesign but very infrequently.

    NEVER occurs with non-Adobe apps.

    I use UnlockerAssistant to free up the file. Most of the time it is Windows Explorer that has it locked but every once in a while it is the application. My suspicion is that it has something to do with the thumbnails.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 6:09 AM   in reply to Tom Dig

    Adobe had always responded with it is a Windows fault, not Adobe.

    And has qualified Windows personnel ever contested that claim?

    (Not to worry, by the way, similar problems seem to happen on Macintosh ocassionally, too.)

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 6:20 AM   in reply to c.pfaffenbichler

    No, not occasionally, it happens all the time if you have the file selected in the Finder and are using column view with the preview on.

     

    I beleive Chris when he says that it's not directly a Photoshop issue, but I question why Photoshop (and occasionally InDesign when exporting a PDF) are so sensitive to this issue when no other app I use cares whether the Finder is displaying a preview or not. If Illustrator and InDesign can successfully save their documents when the Finder is showing a preview, why can't Photoshop?

     

    (This is just one more example of the many many supremely aggravating inconsistencies between Adobe apps, all of which belonging to the same "suite.")

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 7:18 AM   in reply to bpylant

    I've never had the problem before the last couple of days. Now suddenly, Photoshop CS6, and only Photoshop CS6, starts giving me a file save error I've never seen before. That may well be another Adobe application (Bridge, InDesign, and Illustrator would need to be ruled out in this case), but it's certainly not the OS magically changing a core file handling function. Especially not when the same error is seen on both platforms.

     

    I was able to workaround by saving the file to a new filename, but when I open that file and try to save it I got the same error. That file wasn't embedded or linked to another Adobe app. If it's indeed not Photoshop, Bridge is the prime suspect. We'll see.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 7:20 AM   in reply to Tom Dig

    I've been following this thread for a few years and posted here about the same issue.

     

    Note: Adobe has always blamed the host operating system (I use portions of the suite on a Mac and they blamed Apple)...

     

    Same with OSX, I have never experienced another app have this problem -- not commercial, not freeware, not shareware, not open source ports.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 7:25 AM   in reply to c.pfaffenbichler

    From my point of view (right or wrong):

    One application out of many causes a problem on more than one PC with same operating system, I would not blame the operating system.

    If ANY other application resulted in the same fault then maybe blame the system.

    In addition, I hear that the same issue occurs on Macs? This being true than how can blame Windows?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 12:05 PM   in reply to bpylant

    Photoshop just does a lot more error checking, and reports these problems to the user instead of letting them lose work.

     

    Also, we've had people track file access using various utilties, and found everything from Quark and InDesign holding files open to the OS/Finder/Explorer (probably trying to build thumbnails).

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 12:10 PM   in reply to Chris Cox

    Which is commendable, don't get me wrong, but none of the other apps lose files (or portions thereof) because the Finder is displaying a preview.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 12:18 PM   in reply to bpylant

    We've seen them lose files in the same situations where Photoshop puts up a warning.

    That's why we put up a warning -- because many years ago it was an even bigger problem, and we added code to make sure we warned the user if there was a problem.

     

    All Photoshop is doing is passing along an error from the OS - and there is a real error because some other application has the file open or in use.

     

    We've done a lot of investigation on user reports over the years - and every time we find an external application really does have the file open or in use, which means it isn't safe for Photoshop to write the file at that time (because both could be writing, or the other app could crash if we overwrite it, or the file could become lost).

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 1:14 PM   in reply to Chris Cox

    I actualy stopped looking for a solutiion years ago when I found the UnlockerAssistant application.

    The probem is not that Photoshop reports a warning preventing it from overwriting the file. The file is in fact locked by Photoshop and Windows Explorer (explorer.exe). I am unable to delete the file, rename the file or anything else.

    Photoshop does not release the file lock when the file is closed but does release it when Photoshop is closed.

    Explorer does not release until reboot but UnlockerAssistant can force unlock.

    Although not confirmed, I think it only occurs when the folder window is set to show thumbnails.

    I assume Windows calls a Photoshop application in order to display the thumbnail. If true then this is probably where the communication problem between Photoshop and the OS is occuring, resulting in a locked file.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 3:13 PM   in reply to Tom Dig

    Yeah, you just told us the problem: Photoshop is reporting an error because Windows Explorer has the file open and locked, and for some reason won't release it until reboot .

    No, Windows does not call any Photoshop code to display a thumbnail.

     
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  • Noel Carboni
    23,480 posts
    Dec 23, 2006
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 21, 2012 7:08 PM   in reply to Tom Dig

    Tom Dig wrote:


    Although not confirmed, I think it only occurs when the folder window is set to show thumbnails.

     

    Photoshop has nothing to do with this, except that it creates image files on your disk.  The problem is Explorer itself.

     

    There is a pretty good solution for it, too, with almost no downside.  I have documented it in my Configure the Windows 7 "To Work" Options book, and I can tell you from experience that it WILL solve your problems with conflicts.  Using a force-unlocker to get around the file system is only going to net you a corrupted file system and unstable Windows operation.

     

    To this day Windows Explorer by default scans files and generates old style hidden thumbnail cache files called Thumbs.db, and (this is important) this is ONLY done for compatibility with older applications, of which you probably use none.  Certainly Photoshop and other modern software don't use them.

     

    This thumbnail generation can be disabled via the Local Group Policy Editor.  The setting to be enabled is in the User Configuration - Administrative Templates - Windows Components - Windows Explorer section and is this:  Turn off the caching of thumbnails in hidden thumbs.db files.

     

    As an added bonus this makes your system more efficient as well.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 24, 2012 6:03 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    I disabled the thumbnail cache years ago.

    The Adobe reps always argue that it is a Windows fault. Get off your high horse. Open your eyes and see the light. I am tired of the “my OS is better than your OS”.

    A logical conclusion:

    The symptoms:

    • A file remains locked after the file and/or application is closed.

    • This ONLY occurs with ONE application.

    • This occurs on multiple OS’s

    • Possible linked to thumbnails

    Conclusion: Don’t’ blame the OS.

     

    FYI: An application does seem to have something to do with viewing thumbnails. If not, why then when app is uninstalled, can’t see thumbnails?

     
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  • Noel Carboni
    23,480 posts
    Dec 23, 2006
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 24, 2012 9:16 AM   in reply to Tom Dig

    Tom, did you disable the Thumbs.db creation exactly as I stated above.  Because if you didn't, you haven't dealt with that particular problem.  There are about 2 dozen other related operations and configuration entries having to do with thumbnails.

     

    And no, Adobe does NOT augment Windows Explorer with a codec with which to view thumbnails.  They used to - years ago - but stopped, as they were unable to engineer something that complex and make it work right.  In fact, Windows Explorer does NOT display PSD thumbnails (don't know if you've noticed that little detail).

     

    I wonder, though, whether you may be seeing a different issue...  Photoshop makes its "current directory" the place you open files from.  If you open a file, then Photoshop's essentially "sitting on" that directory, and if you were to try to remove it Windows will prevent it, on the assumption that if a running Windows application is using a directory (its current directory) that you probably should be prevented from deleting it or renaming it.

     

    You can easily see this in action for yourself, having nothing to do with Photoshop...   Create a test folder somewhere, open a CMD window, do a CD to that test folder, then (leaving the CMD window open) go to Explorer and try to delete that folder.  Windows will prevent  you from doing so.  It's the exact same thing.

     

    Lastly, you should know that there are those of us using Windows 7 who never have file/folder conflicts.  I never see any problems, and I actually DO have a 3rd party codec that makes thumbnails available to Explorer for PSDs, raw files, etc.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 8, 2013 9:28 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    In Windows 8, access the Local Group Policy Editor using [Windows]+R, type gpedit.msc and click OK. The setting "Turn off the caching of thumbnails in hidden thumbs.db files needs to be set to "Enabled". That setting is under User Configuration \ Administrative Templates \ Windows Components \ File Explorer.

     
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  • Noel Carboni
    23,480 posts
    Dec 23, 2006
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 8, 2013 6:41 PM   in reply to BJN3

    Thanks.  Yes, they renamed Windows Explorer to File Explorer in Windows 8.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 22, 2013 1:08 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Hello,

      

    The problem for the Photoshop CS6 users appeared with "the new feature" Save in Background. I had the same problem with the message that Photoshop won't let me save the files because is used by another application and that's right ADOBE it's your stupid application SAVE IN BACKGROUND! I deactivated and now I can save my files... fix your bugs and then say it's out fault! (I'm pissed off because I'm confrunting with this problem for almost 2 months until I deactived YOUR FEATURE and it's frustrating to save every time with diferent name the same file).

     

    For the record I use windows 7 and windows 8 and I didn't encounter this problem until I updated from cs5.5 to cs6.

     
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  • Noel Carboni
    23,480 posts
    Dec 23, 2006
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 22, 2013 4:37 PM   in reply to Istudor Sorin

    Do you have a theory about why it doesn't fail for everyone, Istudor?  I run Photoshop CS6 on both Windows 7 and 8 as well and have never seen the problem.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 22, 2013 8:58 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    I tried to replicate the problem by doing the following. I opened win explorer in Windows 7. I highlighted a preview of a psd then opened the psd in photoshop cs6. I made some changes to the psd, then saved it with no problems while the preview psd was highlighted. I then created a test file in Indesign cs6, and placed that same psd into the Indesign document. I then went back to the psd in photoshop, made some changes, and again saved it with no problems. Finally, I created a Illustrator cs6 document, and again placed that same psd into it, while both photoshop and indesign were open and while the file was highlighted in win explorer. Again I made some changes in photoshop and the psd saved with no problems. Also there were no problems saving either the Indesign or Illustrator documents, and the photoshop updates also flowed nicely into those documents. So, whatever the problem is, I could not replicate it under the above described situation. My view? I subscribe to Creative Cloud, and always keep everything updated, as well as keeping windows 7 updated automatically. Rigorous updating avoids most if not all problems. By the way, I also had background save turned on in photoshop during this test.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 18, 2013 9:08 AM   in reply to Shlomit Heymann

    I had the same problem, I disabled the "save in background feature" which totally remove the problem in a blink of an eye.

    This feels to to me that that background process is the bad guy here. It sais the file has been changed since you last opened or saved it.

    Changed, but not by me or any other outside program, changed by the Photoshop save in background feature.

    Can anyone confirm/reproduce this?

    I didn't have time to read this huge the whole thread so if this been discussed before, i apologize!

    I really would like the Autosave feature to work though, hope this hint helps someone.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 26, 2013 1:56 PM   in reply to IzeB

    IzeB wrote:

     

    I had the same problem, I disabled the "save in background feature" which totally remove the problem in a blink of an eye.

    This feels to to me that that background process is the bad guy here. It sais the file has been changed since you last opened or saved it.

    Changed, but not by me or any other outside program, changed by the Photoshop save in background feature.

    Can anyone confirm/reproduce this?

    I didn't have time to read this huge the whole thread so if this been discussed before, i apologize!

    I really would like the Autosave feature to work though, hope this hint helps someone.

    I can confirm this. Using Win7 and Photoshop CS6. Never had the problem before today. Turning off the Save in Background stops the error message.

     

    It started after I copied several site folders to a new drive. Using Photoshop as always but now when saving I get the error "Could not save "E:\...\filename.pds" because the file is already in use or was left open by another application."

     

    It now occurs with a given PSD file on the orig C: drive and the new E: drive. With background save activated, the only way to save to the same filename is by choosing save while closing Photoshop. Very frustrating since the autosave function is important to me.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 18, 2013 11:54 AM   in reply to Shlomit Heymann

    Although i see Chris is very passionate about blaming other applications, I found the error to in fact be within PhotoShop. Along with others, I was able to solve this issue by turning off "Save in Background" and changing "Image Previews" to "Never Save".

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 18, 2013 11:18 PM   in reply to christina.caldwell

    Could it be that you misunderstand what is happening and it is actually the OS that messes up when Photosshop is saving files?

    Or are you fairly certain you understand the issue better than an actual programmer with decades of experience like Mr.Cox?

     
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