User Permissions issue for files

Discussion in 'Windows XP / Older OS' started by acrerand, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. acrerand

    acrerand MDL Novice

    Jun 29, 2011
    Hello everyone,

    I am having a problem with not having the correct permissions to be able to copy or modify files off my external hard drive to another location. I keep all my music, pictures, documents etc on my external HD so I can use them on any computer I want, but I will soon be getting a new computer and will want to copy all of these files onto the actual computer instead of them living on my external HD. The problem is I don't have the sufficient permissions.

    I found the source of the problem, and it lies in the fact that when I had tried to run Windows 7 Beta on my computer, it changed all the user permissions of the files on the external HD to be solely belonging to my user account inside that OS and no one else. Not realizing that before I have gotten rid of Windows 7 and reverted back to XP, a good amount of my files still have permissions assigned to the Windows 7 User.

    Within XP, these files are stuck read-only, and give an access denied error when trying to change the read only attribute. I have been able to take ownership of my external HD from XP, but this left the permissions of the files on the drive unchanged.

    When I open the properties of the folder which contains the majority of these stuck read-only files, I am able to go to the Security tab and add "Everyone" and give that full control of the folder, and set it to apply to this folder, subfolders and contents. Doing so does not change the permissions of the individual files though.

    The interesting thing I found is that going to an individual file that is marked read only and unchangeable, Opening up the Properties and going to the Security tab reveals only the user from Windows 7 in the list, and nothing else (such as Everyone or myself in XP) When adding "Everyone" to the list and giving them full control, and also removing the old user, it gives me permission to modify the file as I wanted to do.

    The problem is that there are 5000+ music files I have to do this to and do not have the time to change the permissions of each specific file obviously haha.

    Is there any way I can batch edit the files to add myself to the Users list and remove the old one?

    Your help is greatly appreciated! I hope I wasn't too confusing.

    Thank you,


    MS XP Pro SP3
    Automatic Updates on
  2. stream

    stream MDL Member

    Nov 5, 2010
    #2 stream, Jun 29, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2011
  3. acrerand

    acrerand MDL Novice

    Jun 29, 2011
    Thanks Stream!

    I read through everything carefully, and decided to practice this on my Music folder. When changing the permissions of the folder, I noticed a checkbox saying "Replace permission entries on all child objects with entries shown here that apply to child objects" and decided to try it out. It worked!

    Thanks for your reply.

  4. stayboogy

    stayboogy MDL Addicted

    May 1, 2011
    #4 stayboogy, Jun 29, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2011
    also, instead of ever giving "everyone" full control (this is not suggested at all), you should first right click the drive you want to gain full control on, then go to security, and instead of taking ownership of the whole drive--reason being that system and administrator still have permissions to change the 'owner' and the owner will continue to change at various times no matter what, you should just click "add" and type your username, then ok, then just choose full control, then ok.

    you may still have to do this for certain folders, but you should make sure that you go to "advanced" section and make sure that you have this full control over "this folder, subfolders, and files," and if you don't make it so that you do. there are certain folders you will have to add yourself to this way as well, such as "system volume information." again, taking ownership does not always grant you full control forever, because system and administrator still have this permission--to change owners and permissions (and it is not advisable to ever deny them this permission or any others either) so you should just add yourself, easiest and most effective way, period.

    i've never figured why anyone having 'advanced' pc knowledge would ever suggest taking ownership as being the end all to permission problems. they apparently never tried to take ownership of "system volume information" and then found out that when they restarted their machine they were no longer the owner but 'system' was again the owner. this also would happen when taking ownership of the partition windows is installed to, only it would be 'administrators' becoming the owner on restart. taking ownership does not give you continued ownership or full control, especially in XP.
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  5. evlad

    evlad MDL Member

    May 23, 2011
    #5 evlad, Jul 3, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2011
    One more tip:

    from windows explorer: tools->folder options->view: remove thick from USE SIMPLE FILE SHARING
    re open windows explorer, select wanted folder, then one right mouse click chose properties. you will see tab security. In this tab you can play with permissions ... carefully :cool:

    tip: for owner choose "user" class , "user" class for full access. If you allow "everyone" class maybe your system be exposed to risk ...
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