Ownership and Permissions

Not sure if this has been addressed fully on this forum but Ive been trying to delete previous windows files on various drives and running into a lot of problems. Now before somebody tells me to google this and search on it as there are many threads on this throughout, I have tried everything. I have tried taking ownership and changing the permissions. But even after I do all that, when i try to delete the program files folder or the windows folder, I am still getting access denied and that I still need permission from the username this I have already established as myself. I have also disabled UAC so thats not an issue either with trying to delete the folder. If I am missing something or if somebody has any other ideas, please let me know. This has been bothering me for a while now. I tried doing this a couple months ago and tried every suggestion online then and gave up but now I really want to find the way.


Extraordinary Member
Taking ownership does not work with system files/folders. Could you list the names of those you are trying to delete? There may also be a problem, if you are attempting to delete anything from a previous OS, they may be locked in permissions from there.


New Member
have you not thought about formatting the drive(s) instead of deleting folders!!


New Member
just had a thought ive personally never tried this but you could install linux on one of the other drives and install some kind of dual boot software and when u boot linux i would imagine you could do pretty much anything with any file then. just a thought hope it was of any help

cuzimbrown said:
I have tried taking ownership and changing the permissions
Did you try disk cleanup:

Windows.old Folder - Delete - Windows 7 Forums

1. Open Disk Cleanup.

2. Select the Windows 7 C: drive and click on OK. (See screenshot below)

3. Click on the Clean up system files button. (See screenshot below)

4. If prompted by UAC, then click on Yes.

5. Repeat step 2 above.

6. Check the Previous Windows installations box, and click on OK. (See screenshot below)

7. Click on Delete Files. (See screenshot below)

8. When Disk Cleanup finishes, the C:\Windows.old folder will be deleted.

ive tried the disk cleanup. its on another drive than my main boot drive. its not in a windows.old file. i dont wanna format it becuz i have a lot of other files on the drive. its a TB drive and dont have enough space to back it all up elsewhere. the files i want to delete are the program files dir, program files x86 dir, and windows. Any other ideas?


New Member
you not up for trying linux


Extraordinary Member
See if it can be done by taking the Global Administrator role:

There are a couple of ways:
Open a command prompt (Run as Administrator).
Type the following command and enter.
net user administrator /active
Log out and see if you have a new alternative login, as well as your existing one. If not, do it the long way.

Shut down the computer for a cold boot. Tap the "F8" key as you are booting.
Select "Safe Mode with networking" from the boot menu.
Log into windows 7 with your personal account that holds the administrator access.
Open a command window.
At the command prompt type the following net user administrator /active
Log out and log back in as administrator.

Another way
Go to Start
Type Control UserPasswords2.
Click Advanced.
Click Advanced again.
Select Users.
Select Administrator and untick the the box “Administrator is disabled
Now log out and login as Administrator.
The action leaves you a little more vulnerable to outside attack. Not a big issue if you are confident with your anti virus control etc.

If that doesn't work, If you dare, you can try using the command prompt?
Open a command window (type cmd in the start)
Change to the hard disk with the programs you wish to delete by typing the letter (D: ?)
Type Dir, to see what you have.
To remove a directory, say, program files, RMDIR program Files.
or individual files DEL windows\cuzimbrown\drivers\myfirst.exe

wow. thank you so much. that was it. The global administrator worked.

do you guys recommend that i always use the global admin account?


Extraordinary Member
Thats up to you. It is hyped that it leaves your computer more vulnerable to attack from outside. One point is that it overrides (Microsft only) security. If you have your own third party protection, , including a firewall, you are protected, as much as it is possible, from the evils and ingenuity of hackers. As you can read on the web, even if you use a local "usr" account, fully protected, you can still find yourself with spyware, viruses, key loggers. It is really a matter of where you hunt on the net, and how careful you are in any of those locations.

Fwiw and IMO, I have run as Administrator since the early XP days. From reading, I cannot see that I have been attacked any more than the more cautious users.

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