Files stuck in Read Only format
September 7, 2016 9:35 PM   Subscribe

All of my files are locked in read-only status and nothing I do can fix the problem. More details inside.

First I'll say that I'm using Windows 10, and I've seen that this has been a problem often associated with upgrading to Windows 10, but I upgraded a long time ago, and this problem just occurred and seemed to have nothing to do with it.

Here's the problem: I was working on my laptop, editing a file in PowerPoint 2016 and using a PowerPoint add-on I just installed called iSpring 7. I saved the presentation as a powerpoint show, closed the program, and opened the show. After watching the show, I re-opened the original presentation. But, it was read-only; when I tried to save a new version that I could edit, the folder itself was also read-only. In fact, everything on my computer suddenly was read only. Even worse: the files were saved in Dropbox, the Dropbox folders on my laptop and my desktop are synced, and now everything on my Desktop, and my backup harddrives, is marked as read only. And for both computers, nothing I do removes the read only status:

I select the folder's Properties, un-check "Read Only", make sure it includes all subfolders and files, and click Apply... but when I look at the Properties again, it's Read Only again. I've investigated online and tried the solutions I've found -- making sure that I have full administrator privileges, that I have full control over all folders and files, even disabling certain apps, but nothing changes the results. I've searched for viruses (Vipre is my anti-virus software) and found nothing. I even tried uninstalling the iSpring software, but that seemed to have no effect.

So, I'm basically stuck here unable to edit any old files, because they are read only, or create new files, because the folders are all read only. If you can help, please do! I'm stuck!!!
posted by Saxon Kane to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
Reboot. And log in again.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:34 PM on September 7, 2016

If that doesn't do it, an extra thing to check after rebooting & logging in again:
Right click start button, and select "Command Prompt (Admin)". click yes to the uac prompt.
Enter takeown /F C:\Users\saxonkane\downloads\myimportantprentation.ppt
(the thing in italics should be the real file path of your powerpoint)

Check if you can edit your file now.
posted by neda at 12:33 AM on September 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

Do you use Office 365? This happened to me once. Signing out, rebooting and signing in to the Office 365 service again sorted it.
posted by dowcrag at 2:16 AM on September 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

I have also had this experience with Office 365, when I was without internet, so I couldn't fix it
posted by hydropsyche at 4:34 AM on September 8, 2016

upload to google docs/drive. try to edit there or download them after and try again. libreoffice (for windows) might be able to help. if that doesn't work, i would try on a mac or linux box (do you have a friend with one?) and see if that fixes it.
posted by lescour at 4:51 PM on September 8, 2016

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