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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Fix “You need permission to perform this action” error

Note that UAC (User Account Control) does not usually affect this problem, so don’t go out and automatically disable UAC. If you disable UAC, you can’t do things like share printers, etc, so it’s best to live with it.
There are some things you can do, however, to help out with the “You do not have permission to perform this action” problem though. If it’s a particular file or folder you are trying to delete, you can simply give yourself full control permissions over the file. 
But before we go into that, try one other method that might be a bit faster. Go to StartPrograms,Accessories, and right-click on the command prompt and choose Run as Administrator.

Now at the command prompt type the following command:
net user administrator /active:yes
Press Enter and restart your computer. Now try to perform the task again that gave you the “You do not have permission” error. If that does not work, then follow the steps below to change the file permissions.
To change the security permissions for a file, right-click on the file and go to Properties. Then click on the Security tab.

Now click on the Advanced button at the bottom and click on the Owner tab.

Click on the Edit button, click Other users and groups and type in your user account name and click Check Names

Click OK and on the Owner tab make sure to check the “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects” box. Now select your user account from the list on the Security tab and click Edit. Click Allow next to Full Controland click OK.


When I click on 'security tab', it brings me to the properties of the drive, but there is no security tab. A similar question has been asked here and here, but for both of those questions, they have access to the security tab, which I don't. Also, it says underneath the drive that it that it has 196 MB free of 196MB. I don't remember exactly how much storage it has, but it has at least 20 gigs, and probably 50-100. It also has some files that I'd rather not lose.
When I run the command promt as an administrator, I can change directories from C: to A:, but when I try to list the contents of A: I get this:
 Volume in drive A is EFI
 Volume Serial Number is 3F3C-1AF6

 directory of A:\

File Not Found

Have I lost all the files and the space on my drive? How can I get access to it again?


It seems you have two problems here. One is a simple matter of user error. The other, I'm afraid, is going to be a bit trickier.
  1. You're mounting the wrong partition. The "EFI" partition you are mounting is just a partition to hold the bootloader for systems that use UEFI. This partition will not contain any of your data and generally should not be messed with.
  2. Your data partition is not formatted. Notice how the two partitions on Disk 0 have "NTFS" listed for their File System, but the partitions for Disk 1 don't have anything. Having nothing listed for File System is normal for an EFI System Partition, Recovery Partitions, and some other special-use partitions. However, it is not normal for any partition that contains an operating system, programs, and/or user data.
While I can't say exactly what happened to your drive, I can tell you that you won't be able to read it by any normal means while Windows is not detecting a file system on the data partition. You will probably need some advanced data recovery tools to get anything off of the drive, if it's possible at all.
One thing you should not do, until you've gotten all retrievable data copied to another drive, is format the drive. Formatting the drive will make later data recovery much more difficult, if not impossible by common means.

If you're having problems formatting that said hard drive and it says "windows unable to complete the format"

Go to desktop. Then start button and go to where it says "computer." Right click "computer" and click "manage."
Then go to disk management from the options. 
Then select the hard drive from the window and I think its the 3rd window.

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