Reinstall Windows dealing with NTFS permissions
October 21, 2009 2:58 PM   Subscribe

I'm a few weeks away from rebuilding my PC with Windows 7 and need help understanding how to deal with NTFS permissions.

I'm a few weeks away from rebuilding my PC with Windows 7. I'm currently using the release candidate of Windows 7 with the following drive configuration:

C:\ - Windows and applications (some data)
D:\ - data drive (including "D:\My Documents\")
Q:\ - external backup drive (Drobo)

All drives are formatted with NTFS and backups of selected directories to Q:\ are done with rsync. I've noticed that some directories on Q:\ are not accessible by the Guest account, meaning that permissions are not consistent on that drive. The machine isn't on a domain.

My plan is to wipe C:\ and reinstall Windows, and leave D:\ and Q:\ alone. My questions are:

- How do I reinstall and prevent ugly situations with NTFS file permissions (i.e., permission denied)?
- Is there a best practices guide for syncing to my backup drive to ease future accessibility from another computer?

Many thanks!
posted by chrisch to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
After install you'll see the partition for D. Take ownership of it and make the local administrator have access to all the files. Make your user account have access to all the files. You probably will need to do the same for Q.

Now redirect My Documents to the folder on D.
posted by damn dirty ape at 4:56 PM on October 21, 2009

Personally, I would copy D to another drive and do a standard install. Wipe the disk and only make one partition. Now copy D back to My Documents on C:. Now you only have C and Q.
posted by damn dirty ape at 4:57 PM on October 21, 2009

Ultimately, unless the files are encrypted you won't have any issues where you run into a brick wall.

If you encounter any issues, simply take ownership of the file and grant yourself rights -- google turned up this:

Also, with rsync, I believe the -a (archive, perfect copy) or -p (permissions intact) switch will help alleviate your backup issues. I'm not on my windows box right now, so you may want to doublecheck the exact verbage on those.
posted by unvivid at 5:45 PM on October 21, 2009

Also, after a little more research--


Do not pass permissions, so this will essentially strip all permissions.

Depends on how secure you need your info to be, but permissionless would provide the smoothest transition if security is not an issue.
posted by unvivid at 6:00 PM on October 21, 2009

I wasn't aware that you can simply "Take Ownership" on any NTFS folder regardless of the permissions assigned. Thank you for your responses!
posted by chrisch at 7:23 AM on October 23, 2009

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