How can I monitor which processes are accessing my hard drive?

Manuel Guillermo López Buenfil February 4, 2012

Sometimes, I detect a lot of activity on my hard drive, but I don’t know which process is using it. How can I detect which process is using my hard drive?

  1. Anonymous
    February 4, 2012 at 9:27 am

    open Windows services (go to run and type services.msc). choose a service then right click and select properties.


    February 4, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Hello, there are a few services/processes that costantly have activity in your harddrive.  It can be caused by running tasks setup by you or the system.  Some examples are automatic backups, antivirus, etc.  It could also be cause by viruses and malware.  One of the best tools for this would be process lasso.  There are two versions, free and pro.  It works in both x86 and x64.  Here is the link:

    Systernal tools are pretty good and free.  These tools were bought by Microsoft a few years back.  You can download the tools one by one or the whole suite.  Visit following link and check under File and Disk utilities.  There are several tools that can be used for what you need.

    File And Disk utilities:

    Process utilities:

    System Information Utilities:

    Keep in mind that you can keep track of all of this with task manager in windows 7.  It is just  a matter of selecting your filters for it.  Here is something you could try:

    -- click on ctrl + alt + delete at same time (ctrl + shift + esc)
    -- click on start task manager
    -- click on Performance Tab
    -- click on Resource Monitor
    -- on menu, click on Disk tab
    -- Under Process with Disk activity you should see the active processes for your harddrive
    -- click on Total (B/sec) column to sort by activity.  You can select from highest to lowest.  Highest is usually the process more active in your harddrive.
    -- click on down arrow where is says disk activity and it should expand.  It should show you all the disk activity

    Let me know if this helps.

    • Manuel Guillermo López Buenfi
      February 4, 2012 at 4:03 pm

       I must give you credit for providing the simplest solution. I use task manager a lot, but didn't know that it had that function! thanks a lot!

      • Tina
        February 4, 2012 at 6:10 pm

        Thank you for the feedback, Manuel!

      • FIDELIS
        February 5, 2012 at 1:25 pm

        Hello, I am glad it helped

  3. Karkala Nayak
    February 4, 2012 at 5:23 am

    Hello Manuel Guillermo López Buenfil,

    You can use Process Monitor which can be downloaded from the Microsoft website. here is the link.. 


    you can use Process Explorer which is also available for download from the Microsoft website..

    Hope it helped..

    Your stranger,

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