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XP SP2 Install Error: Atapi.sys is in Use by Another Program or Application

Several programs can cause this inability to backup atapi.sys when trying to install SP2. This tutorial explains the error and how to correct it.


Multiple people are reporting that they are getting “atapi.sys” errors during the installation of XP SP2.

This error is caused by programs that create virtual hard drives on your system such as Daemon Tools and Alcohol.

If you see this error, cancel the installation and disable these programs. For me, turning off Alcohol was enough. Other users have reported that they had to completely uninstall these types of programs before installing SP2.

David Kirk
David Kirk
David Kirk is one of the original founders of tech-recipes and is currently serving as editor-in-chief. Not only has he been crafting tutorials for over ten years, but in his other life he also enjoys taking care of critically ill patients as an ICU physician.
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