Files unreadable after decrypt-encrypt

I just wrote some document with multiple files (LaTeX). Then I encrypted the folder the document was in by
right click => Properties => Advanced... => Encrypt contents to secure data
and then select "apply to subfolders etc.".

Then I wanted to open a file within that folder but it was totally scrabled. Therefore I unchecked the "Encrypt contents" checkmark again and expected everything to be readable again. But no! The file contents are still just mumbojumbo. What can I do to read my files again?

I am running Windows 7 Ultimate x64.

Thanks for your help!


Extraordinary Member
Premium Supporter
I don't know this, but if you have encrypted it, you need to decrypt it, in order to read it. Merely unchecking "encrypt", won't help, that would rob your privacy, wouldn't it, as anyone could do it.

From what I've read, the password for decrypt tends to be the same as for encrypt.

Whatever you do, don't shoot the messenger! :confused:

thanks for your answer. There is no "password" for Windows file encryption. It is ment to protect your data from other users or people who extract your harddrive and try to read the data on it. When you login with your account you can open the encrypted file as if it wasn't encrypted. The decryption is done automatically by Windows - at least it should be, thats my problem.

I have used that feature before on another PC without problems. The key is stored in the encryption cerificate.


Extraordinary Member
Premium Supporter
Sorry, I went a bit astray. It should work, are you sure you don't have any mix of users or passwords into Windows? No one else has messed with the computer? You can check the certificate issue by writing "certmgr.msc" in start menu, without quotation marks, press Enter, double click Personal, click Certificates, double click what you see in the right window.

This is not a cure, it's only an analysis to see who has the rights.

IT COULD also be as simple as to right click the files / folders in Explorer and choose "run as administrator". But I doubt that solution in this case. And if you ever try this, do NOT apply it to a whole disk, there are some risks involved.

Let's hope someone with more knowledge steps in the arena. Best of all. :)

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