Take Ownership

Ever tried deleting a file only to get an annoying error telling you that you’ve been denied access or reading something along these lines? Or maybe, have you ever, when trying to move or copy a folder or a file, encountered an error stating that the source file may be in use? These types of errors can say hi to anyone, and for the record, have said hi to the best of us. They may be annoying, in fact, they are annoying, but they don’t happen without a reason. The reason is: you do not have the ownership of the folder or file, and thus are unable to perform any action on them, or your operating system or a user is using them.

This might seem frustrating at first, but you can actually quite possibly figure out what situation exactly you’re in by taking a quick look at what you’re trying to access. If the error messages you’re getting read “You don’t currently have permission to access this folder” or “Access is Denied”, what you’re facing in all its probability is permission problem. This article hopes to address the permission problem and walk you through easy steps on how you can professionally gain access to the files and folders on Windows. And yes, the technique is simple and easy.

First of all, double check that the account your account has administrative privileges. In Windows, an administrative account can by default take ownership of a folder or file.

The Process

Move your cursor over to the file or folder and right click, and select “Properties” on the context menu.

Take Ownership

Switch the active tab to “Security in the “Properties” window and click “Advanced”.

Take Ownership

If you’re on windows 8, or 10, in “Advanced Security Settings”, click the text link that reads “Change” against the owner.

Take Ownership

If you’re a Windows 7 user, you can instead click the separate “Owner” tab on the Advanced Security window; next, click “Edit” in the left bottom corner and subsequently the “Other Users or Groups”

Take Ownership

From this point onward, the process is the same for Windows 7, 8 and 10.

When in the “Select User or Group” dialog box, in the text input field, type your user account, and click “Check Names”. If the input is a valid name, it’ll change into complete user name following the PC name. Click “OK” to complete the step.

Bear in mind that in case of a Microsoft account, first five letters of your email address denote your official account. The same five letters name the user folder.

Back into the Advanced Security Settings, you should now see your user as the owner. For a folder, make sure to check the check box following the “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects”, and click “OK” to complete the step.

Take Ownership

Back into the Advanced Security Settings, you should now see your user as the owner. For a folder, make sure to check the check box following the “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects”, and click “OK” to complete the step.

Take Ownership

Finally, in the “Security” tab of the Properties window, hit the “OK” button to finish the process.

Take Ownership

And that’s all folks! You now have total ownership of your folder or file.