Taking Ownership of a File or Folder

Sometimes it is necessary to Take Ownership of a folder or a file that you cannot access or delete. If you are receiving an Access Denied message (refer to Image below) and have Administrative privileges then you may need to Take Ownership of the File or Folder in question.

Windows XP Home is restricted in showing the Security tab for the Folder/File Properties page. Windows XP Home users will be required to start their computer in Safe Mode in order to use the Security tab. Windows XP Home user can refer to Starting Your Computer in Safe Mode – The Easy Way blog article for easy reference.

Windows XP Professional users will need to enable the Security tab to be shown in the Folder/Folder Properties page. Refer to Enabling the Security Tab in Folder/File Properties blog entry to enable the Security tab.

Taking Ownership of a Folder

  1. Right-click the folder you want to Take Ownership and select Properties.
  2. Click the Security tab then the Advance button. Refer to Image below.

  3. Click on the Owner tab, select your Username, or the Administrators group, or the Administrator account. Place a checkmark for Replace owner on subcontainers and objects. Click the Apply button.

  4. A prompt will ask you to replace all permissions for the contents of the folder/directory. Click Yes.

  5. Click OK to close the Advance Security Settings. You may want to configure the security settings for the Folder and its contents.
  6. Click OK to close the Folder Properties page.

Taking Ownership of a File

  1. Right-click the file you want to Take Ownership and select Properties.
  2. Click the Security tab then the Advance button. Refer to Image below.

  3. Click on the Owner tab, select your Username, or the Administrators group, or the Administrator account. Click the Apply button.

  4. Click OK to close the Advance Security Settings. You may want to configure the security settings for the File.
  5. Click OK to close the File Properties page.

Version 1.4
Edited: May 2, 2012

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