Have you ever experienced trying to access a file or installing an application on a Windows PC, and suddenly a message saying “Access Denied” error pops up. This is a common notification telling the user, that there are restrictions that this account on the PC has. Sometimes, these restrictions can interrupt whatever job or project, you are doing on the PC. However, there are some steps you can follow to fix the access denied error. This applies for Windows 10,8,7. Continue reading to know the methods on how to resolve the issue on Windows.
Add Proprietorship to Your AccountOne reason why your access to a file is denied, is because you have limited privilege on your user account. This means that there are restrictions to what you can have access to. To remove these restrictions, you can add administrator privileges to your account. Here are the steps to take proprietorship of the account.
Step1 Open the Properties WindowSearch for the file that you don’t have access to. Right click and select the “Properties” option.
Step2 Select the Advanced optionOn the Properties window, select the “Security” tab, and click the “Advanced” button.
Step3 Select the Change buttonBesides the “Owner” segment, is the “Change” button, click it to get to the next window.
Step4 Enter Your User Account NameOn the next window, under the “Enter the object names to select” box, type in your Account Username and click the “Check Names” button and “OK” after.
Step5 Tick the Replace Owner boxAfter clicking “OK” from the previous window, the “Owner” segment will now have an additional option below it. Click the checkbox of the “Replace owner on sub containers and objects” option and click “Apply” and “OK.”
Place Your Account under the Administrator ListFor some folders, especially in the Systems folder, Administrator level privileges are required to access them. Because if you try to open the file without the right authority, the folder access denied notification will just get in your way. Follow the steps below to add your Account to the list of Administrators on the PC.
Step1 Open the Computer Management windowOn the search bar, type in “Computer Management” and press the “Enter” key.
Step2 Go to the Users FolderOn the Computer Management window, click the “Local Users and Groups” category and click the “Users” folder. Next, double-click on your account on the left box of the window.
Step3 Click the Member Of tabFrom the User Properties window that will appear, select the “Member Of” tab and click the “Add” button.
Step4 Add the Administrator optionOn the next window, under the “Enter the object names to select” box, type “Administrator” and click “Check Names” and the “OK” button after.
Step5 Apply Administrator PrivilegesUnder the “Member Of” tab, the Administrator option will be added. Select the Administrator option and click the Apply button and then the “OK” button and restart your PC.
Use the Built in Administrator AccountWindows 10 and 8 have a built in “Administrator” account to use. However, it is hidden because of security reasons. To use this account, follow the steps below.
Step1 Run the Command Prompt as AdministratorOn the Search bar, type “CMD” and right click on the Command Prompt icon and select Run as Administrator.
Step2 Enter the Command LineOn the Command Prompt, type in the command line “net user administrator /active:yes” and press “Enter” to activate the account.
Step3 Use the Unlocked AccountYou can now use the Administrator account by logging out from your account and switching to the new one.
Step4 Lock the Account againAfter using the account, go back to the Command Prompt and re-enter the same command line, this time replace the “yes” with “no.”
Review the Account PermissionsIf the “access is denied” notification appears, it would be better to check the Permissions that your account is granted. This will ensure that the problem is not caused by a basic thing like getting system permissions to perform certain tasks. Follow the steps below to see and add permissions to your account.
Step1 Open the Properties of the File FolderRight click on the folder that denies you access, select the “Properties” from the list of options on the menu.
Step2 Click the Security tabOn the Properties window, under the “Security” tab, click the “Edit” button.
Step3 Check the Full Control optionClick your username and on the “Permissions for SYSTEM” box, click the “Full control” check box under the “Allow” section.
Reset Account Permissions Using Command PromptCommand Prompt is a tool that works by entering command lines for specific functions. This is also one way to resolve the “Windows access is denied” error. Command Prompt can be intimidating at first because of its appearance. However, if you follow the steps below, there won’t be a problem.
Step1 Launch the Command Prompt as an AdministratorOn the Search bar, type in “Command Prompt” and right click on the icon and select “Run as Administrator.”
Step2 Enter the Command LineOn the Command Prompt, type the command lines “cd /users/(Account Username)” and press “Enter.” Next enter “icacls Pictures /reset /t /q” and hit the “Enter” key.
Step3 Restart the PCAfter typing in all the commands, restart the PC to apply all the changes to the system.
Switch Account from Standard User to AdministratorOne of the reasons for the access denied error to a file is because the User account you are using is only a Standard User account. If that is the case, then try switching your account to an Administrator by following the steps below.
Step1 Open User Account WindowTo launch the User Account window, press the “Windows key and R key” at the same time. On the “Run” box, type “control userpasswords2” and press “Enter” key.
Step2 Click the Properties optionOn the User Account window, tick the checkbox for “Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer” and select your User name and click “Properties.”
Step3 Select Administrator optionOn the Properties window, select the “Group Membership” tab and switch from Standard user to Administrator and click “OK.”
Step4 Restart the SystemOnce finished, reboot the system to apply all the changes.
Revise the Registry SettingsRegistry settings can hold the key to fixing the access issue on your PC. When access restrictions are being a pain, you can try by editing a few things on the Registry. Just be sure the follow the instructions carefully because one wrong setting can cause a bigger error on the system. Here are the steps to edit the registry.
Step1 Run the Regedit WindowLaunch the Registry from the Run box by pressing the “Windows + R” keys together and type “regedit” and press “Enter.”
Step2 Create a New RegistryHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanWorkstation\Parameters is the file path to follow. On the right pane of the Parameters folder, right click on a black space and select “New,” and click DWORD (32-bit) Value. Rename Dword to “AllowInsecureGuestAuth.”
Step3 Edit the Value of the newly created RegistryOpen the new registry by double clicking on it and under the “Value Data” enter the number 1 and click “OK.”
Step4 Reset the SystemRestart the PC and wait for it to boot.
Disable User ControlUser Accounts have an option that sets restrictions to what a User account can do to the system. For example, when trying to install an application, the system might say access is denied because the user don’t have permission to do so. What needs to be done, is to disable the User account control to proceed without being interrupted by the notification. Here are the steps to disable User Controls.
Step1 Launch the User Account windowOn the search bar, type in “User Accounts” and click the top result.
Step2 Disable the ControlSlide the pointer to the lowest point or the “Never Notify” level and click “OK.”
Turn off Antivirus ProgramMost antivirus programs, intercepts programs that is considered as harmful to the system. That is why when you try to install a 3rd party tool to the system, it denies access to the tool. Here are the steps to disable Windows Defender.
Step1 Enter Windows SettingsLaunch the Settings window from the Search bar by typing “settings” and press “Enter.”
Step2 Open the Update and Security SectionFrom the Setting window, select the “Update and Security” option
Step3 Click Virus and Threat ProtectionClick the “Windows Security” option and “Open Windows Defender” option. Select Virus and Threat protection and disable the “Real Time Protection” option.
Extra Tips to Access Google DriveOne instance where the access is denied message appears is when using Google Drive. To resolve this issue, you can try to stop all the process of Google Drive and uninstall it from the system. Here are the steps to do this.
Step1 Launch the Task ManagerTo open the Launch Manager, press the “Ctrl + Alt + Del” keys simultaneously and select Task Manager.
Step2 End Google Drive ProcessOn the Task Manager, locate all the process of Google Drive and click the “End task” button.
Step3 Uninstalll Google DriveClose the “Task Manager” and uninstall the program from the system.
Step4 Open the Google FolderPress the “Windows and R” keys simultaneously again and type %localappdata%\Google and press “Enter.”
Step5 Rename the Drive FolderOn the Google folder, search for the Google Drive folder and change it to “Drive.old.”
Step6 Reinstall Google DriveReinstall Google Drive to the System again and see if the issue is fixed.
Being denied access to the system can become troublesome. However, with the right knowledge, you can fix this problem. In this article, we have discussed different ways to fix the access denied error in different situations with detailed steps. By following the instructions carefully, there won’t be any problem, and you will be able to fix the denied access issue in no time. By the way, if you have any problem or suggestion, please let us know by leaving a comment below. Thank you!