Win7 on new HD but old HD (Vista) files no access

Here is my quandary which was self made:

500GB HD was my original HD. Vista 64. Files. Games. The works.

I decided to use a new 'Win7 Upgrade'. The upgrade failed twice but the Vista 64 recovery worked.

The third time I tried to upgrade (after reading some Microsoft forums on this issue), the process wholly failed and I could not recover back to Vista 64.

Drive is now stuck in limbo between Vista & Win7. Recovery back to Vista failed. I used a recovery disk to try to fix things, like many forums suggested, but it didn't work.

Wife bought me a new 2TB HD but I was frustrated with my 500GB HD (Old HD) failed upgrade, so I took the easy way out. I used a new 'Win7 Full' disc on that 2TB HD and hooked up my 500GB HD as the 2nd drive. Yes, I have a Win7 Upgrade + Win7 Full versions, long story, but at this stage, I really don't care if I waste a product key. I just want my pc running smoothly.

Issue: I am not allowed to access files on the Old HD (borked upgrade HD). I think it is an administrator issue.

When I look at the Old HD directory, I see:
&INPLACE.~TR
$UPGRADE.~OS
$WINDOWS.~BT
$WINDOWS.~LS
$WINDOWS.~Q


Primary Solution: I get the Win 7 Upprade to work on the Old HD and I don't have to move files or change drivers etc.

Secondary Solution: I keep my New HD as my Win 7 boot drive and I find out how to access my files on the Old HD. This is where I am now, but it is not optimal b/c I have to remember all my drivers and setting.

I've been trying to fix my own mess for the past 3-wks (yes that long), but I'm coming up goose eggs. Time to get some help.

Other Info: I have not messed with anything else besides what you see above. The only driver I loaded was Nvidia drivers for my SLI configuration (which I think I borked also... but that's another story).
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More about win7 vista files access
  1. If you're not able to upgrade, then there's no way to get to Windows 7 short of completely re-installing the OS and all your applications. The best you'll be able to do is to copy your data files from the old drive.

    You should be able to find your data files in the "Documents" or "Users" folder on the old drive. The big issue is probably that your new Windows 7 system won't have permissions to access them. To solve this you need sign onto an administrative account on your new system, right-click on the folders, go into the security settings, and (a) take ownership of the folders and all subfolders and files, then (b) grant your account "full control" access to the folders and all subfolders and files.
  2. Thanks sminlal. That was the ticket.

    I actually tried to do that last week, but I realized I was in the wrong directory. My files were in the &INPLACE.~TR directory.

    Thanks again!!!
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