You may come across a situation where you are unable to rename a file on your Windows computer despite the file not being open anywhere. If you go on to rename it, you may see an error: File In Use, The action cannot be completed because the file is open in COM Surrogate.
The message will suggest you close the file and try again. If it helps, good for you. But it does not, then you could try one of these suggestions. But before you begin, do scan your computer with your antivirus software, as malware infection may throw up this message.
File in use, The action cannot be completed because the file is open in COM Surrogate
The dllhost.exe process goes by the name COM Surrogate, and the term itself is pretty generic – but it is used to host one or more operating system services. When COM Surrogate is unable to handle the code; you may receive this error.
To fix The action cannot be completed because the file is open in COM Surrogate error, follow these steps:
- Check the Task Manager
- Restart computer and try
- Perform a Clean Boot
- Remove recently installed 3rd-party program
- Disable Hardware Acceleration
- Disable Data Execution Prevention
To learn more about these steps, continue reading.
1] Check the Task Manager
At times, the application might not show open in the taskbar, but it might still be running elsewhere without the knowledge of the user. To isolate this possibility, please open the Task Manager and check the list of programs that are running. If your program is listed among them, right-click on it and select the option ‘End Task’ to close it.
Also, try this. Open Task Manager > Under the Details tab, locate dllhost.exe process, right-click on it, and select End task. Now see if you can do what you wanted to do.
2] Restart computer and try
Restart your Windows computer and try to carry out the desired operation on the file.
3] Perform a Clean Boot
Boot your computer in Clean Boot State and then try to manually troubleshoot the issue. You will have to find the offending process manually. Clean-boot troubleshooting is designed to isolate a performance problem.
4] Remove recently installed 3rd-party program
At times, a few third-party applications might be interfering, and that could cause this issue. In case your system was working fine earlier and is showing the problem after installing a 3rd party application any recently, try uninstalling that program and check if it works after that.
5] Disable Hardware Acceleration
Hardware Acceleration means using a computer’s hardware for performing a certain task and function faster than would be possible using the software. Disable hardware graphics acceleration and see if that helps you.
When you disable Hardware Acceleration smooth rendering of graphics may be affected adversely.
6] Disable Data Execution Prevention
Data Execution Prevention or DEP is a security feature that can help prevent damage to your computer. If a program tries executing code from memory in an incorrect way, DEP closes the program. Turn Off DEP for that individual Program or disable Data Execution Prevention globally and see if it helps. Mind you when you disable DEP globally, it will leave your computer less secure.
When DEP is enabled. Windows can detect attempts to run code from protected memory locations and help prevent attacks. When you disable DEP, your system will be left ‘that much unprotected’.
If something does not work for you, remember to reverse the changes made.
How do I fix Open in COM Surrogate?
To fix The action cannot be completed because the file is open in COM Surrogate issue on Windows 11/10 PC; you need to terminate the dllhost.exe process using Task Manager. Apart from that, you can restart your computer and check if it solves the issue. At times, third-party software can be responsible for this problem as well. In such a situation, you need to check if you have recently installed any third-party software or not. If yes, you may uninstall it to fix the problem.
What does it mean if a File is open in COM Surrogate?
If you get The action cannot be completed because the file is open in COM Surrogate error while renaming or copying a file on Windows 11/10, it implies that dllhost.exe service is not responding as it should be. In other words, the COM Surrogate service is unable to handle the code on your computer to perform a certain task.
Hope something helps!