Take ownership of Files and Folders in Windows 7

Right from the Server editions Windows has special feature called as Take Ownership ( More here ) which allows Administrators to take control over files and folders when required. Windows 7 is very advanced when compared to earlier editions of Windows, in fact with so many features for admins there is lot one can do. The same feature of Take Ownership can be enabled in Windows 7 and here is the detailed steps on how and yes you need to be admin to do it.

  • Right click on any folder or file of which you want to take ownership of.
  • Go to Properties and select Security tab and then click on Advance Tab.
Change ownership Windows 7
Change ownership Windows 7
  • What you would see is an advance security area of that particular object. This is the right place if you want to find out about Auditing, permissions etc.
  • Now select the Owner Tab. This tab lists down the owner(s) of the file or folder.  The popup box should say “You can take or assign ownership of this object…..” i.e. You can change the ownership from the current user to any of the listed users below. Very useful when you need to change ownership of not just take it.
  • Now click on the edit button and then select the user or group to which you want to assign the permission. Once done save it and you would see the ownership change once you visit the file properties again.
  • This is also useful when users get any protection errors while deleting files and folders even if they are the owner. You can re-assign the ownership by removing and adding the user once again and the problem will be solved.
  • You are done.

These few steps you should follow it correct and be aware what you are doing as changing the ownership can make the files completely out of reach of anybody.

Now if you find these steps little difficult to follow, go and download this small registry hack which will add a small context menu labeled as “Take Ownership”. Then when you want to take over any file or folder just right-click and select this one. The files and folders will be all yours. However you will not be able to assign to any particular user or group using this.


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