Previous file versions from a previous OS
May 23, 2011 1:11 PM   Subscribe

Windows 7 has been installed over Windows XP and I need access to some files from the old OS, but there are some serious permission issues.

I'm helping someone who has reinstalled Windows 7 over Windows XP after their computer crashed. There is a particular program that keeps all of its information off the C: drive and isn't backed up into the Windows.old folder. However, after reinstalling the software he can see previous versions of the data (pre-crash) available in the Previous Versions tab for the folder. However, even with administrator access he doesn't have permission to do anything with the files - he can't even take control. Is there some way to get at these files or is it a lost cause?

Also, I'm aware of the insane levels of "don't do that" was involved in getting here. I just need to know if there is a way to get at those files.
posted by charred husk to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
I don't have a Windows 7 install in front of me to double-check this, but try going to the folder's Security tab and look for Advanced. Under there should be an Owner tab with options to set a new owner, or take ownership, something along those lines. Perform that action first, setting the owner to whatever the logged-in administrator account is. Then, re-try setting any folder specific permissions (such as read/write for administrator) as a separate but secondary step. It should allow you to set the permissions after the ownership change.
posted by odinsdream at 1:15 PM on May 23, 2011

Ah, sorry, by not take control I meant not take ownership.
posted by charred husk at 1:19 PM on May 23, 2011

Are you getting an error message? You can try a similar operation with xcacls via the command-line.
posted by odinsdream at 4:28 PM on May 23, 2011

Try doing this in safe mode under the Administrator account, just to rule out any other security mechanisms that might be in play. (You may need to enable the Administrator account beforehand)
posted by samsara at 5:24 AM on May 25, 2011

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