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Controlling Access to Your Data (part 3) - Ownership Permissions

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3/26/2011 3:05:18 PM

3. Ownership Permissions

The owner of a file or a folder is the highest permission holder. Regardless of whether the permissions on the file or folder allow the owner to open the file or folder, the owner can always reset the permissions via the file or folder’s Properties dialog box. The default owner of a file or a folder is the person who created the resource.

You can assign or take ownership if you have the required permissions or privileges. Individuals with the required permissions include the owner and anyone with an administrator account.

If you are an administrator or the current owner of a file, you can assign ownership of a file or a folder to another user or group by completing these steps:

Figure 5. Assigning ownership permission


  1. In Windows Explorer, right-click the file or folder you want to work with and then select Properties.

  2. In the Properties dialog box, select the Security tab and then click Advanced. This opens the “Advanced Security Settings for” dialog box.

  3. On the Owner tab, click Edit. This opens an editable view of the Owner tab in a new dialog box (see Figure 5).

  4. Click “Other users or groups” to display the Select User or Group dialog box.

  5. Type the name of a user or a group account. Click Check Names and then do one of the following:

    • If a single match is found for each entry, the dialog box is automatically updated as appropriate and the entry is underlined.

    • If multiple matches are found, you’ll see an additional dialog box that allows you to select the name you want to use, and then click OK.

    • If no matches are found, you’ve probably entered an incorrect name. Modify the name in the Name Not Found dialog box and then click Check Names again.

  6. In the “Change owner to” listbox, select the new owner. If you’re taking ownership of a folder, you can take ownership of all subfolders and files within the folder by selecting the “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects” checkbox.

  7. Click OK twice to save your settings.

If you are an administrator, you can take ownership of a file or a folder by completing the following steps:

  1. In Windows Explorer, right-click the file or folder you want to work with and then select Properties.

  2. In the Properties dialog box, select the Security tab and then click Advanced. This opens the “Advanced Security Settings for” dialog box.

  3. On the Owner tab, click Edit. This opens an editable view of the Owner tab in a new dialog box.

  4. In the “Change owner to” listbox, select the new owner. If you’re taking ownership of a folder, you can take ownership of all subfolders and files within the folder by selecting the “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects” checkbox.

  5. Click OK twice to save your settings.

NOTE

If you encounter a file or folder that doesn’t allow you to take ownership, the takeown command-line utility can often get the job done. To use it, open an elevated, administrator Command Prompt by clicking Start→All Programs→Accessories, then right-clicking on Command Prompt and selecting Run as Administrator. Next, use the cd command to change to the directory that contains the file or folder, and enter:

takeown /f filename

where filename is the name of the file you want to take ownership of. This will assign ownership to the currently logged-on user. takeown has a number of other options. Enter takeown /? to list them.

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