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Accessing NTFS Drive after Windows 7 Install

Last response: in Windows 7
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November 25, 2009 1:26:42 PM

Hello All,

I am running Win XP SP3 and I plan to upgrade to Windows 7. I currently have two hard disks as one is the system hard disk and the second drive is my data disk (E: Drive). If I upgrade to Windows 7, will I still be able to read the data on the E: drive? If Windows 7 can read the data, would it make sense to back up any files on the system hard disk to the E: drive so I could copy the files back to C: drive after Windows 7 install? All drives are currently NTFS.

Thanks, Bill
a c 215 $ Windows 7
November 25, 2009 2:35:40 PM

Windows 7 can read any drive formatted as NTFS, no matter what operating system is was formatted under.
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a c 209 $ Windows 7
November 25, 2009 8:03:50 PM

Since you're upgrading from XP, you'll have to do a full install. This will create new accounts for you, and while Windows 7 will have no problems reading the disk itself, the security on any personal folders on the disks may block you from accessing them.

The way to solve this is either to:

a) Before you upgrade, change the security on your folders and their files and subfolders to allow "Full Control" access by "Everyone", or

b) After you upgrade, sign on to an administrative account, open up the security properties dialog box for the folders you want to access, take ownership of the folders and their files and subfolders, and then change their security to allow "Full Control" access by whatever accounts you need. The "take ownership" part is important - you won't be able to change the security unless you are the owner (even if you're an Administrator).
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November 25, 2009 9:48:18 PM

sminlal,

Thanks for the feedback. For option A, can you give me more of a step by step on how to do it? Would right click on the drive>properties>sharing and then.....?
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a c 209 $ Windows 7
November 25, 2009 11:30:02 PM

You'll need to do these steps for every folder tree you need to access. Start at the root (highest level directory) of each folder tree. For a non-OS disk, you can start at the root folder for the disk, but for an OS disk you shouldn't do that because you might change the protections on the OS files and folders and that's not a good thing to do.

1) Right-click on a folder and select "properties"

2) Click the "Security" tab

3) Click "Advanced"

4) Click "Change Permissions..."

5) Click "Add..."

6) Enter "Everyone" into the "Enter the object names to select" box, then click "OK".

7) In the "Permissions" list, click the checkbox beside "Full Control" in the "Allow" column so that a checkmark appears in it.

8) Make sure the "Apply to" drop-down list above the permissions pane says "This folder, subfolders and files", then click "OK".

9) Click "OK" on each of the dialogs until they're all closed.
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November 27, 2009 10:52:06 AM

Thanks again. I am running Windows XP Pro but I don't see the security tab when I right click. Perhaps I have not enabled security? I only have two User accounts on this PC - One is the main account and the second is the guest account.
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November 27, 2009 10:55:16 AM

That was easy. Just figured it out:

First, your hard drive must be formatted NTFS for this tab to show up.

Second, if you're running XP Pro, you must open Windows Explorer, go to Tools, Folder Options, View and uncheck Use Simple File Sharing.


So to answer my own question, I am using simple file sharing. Do I still need to worry about permissions on the drive if I upgrade to 7?
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a c 209 $ Windows 7
November 27, 2009 3:18:59 PM

If your drive is formatted as FAT then there is NO security on it whatsoever and you won't have any problems accessing it from Windows 7.
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November 27, 2009 5:51:05 PM

Understood but the drive is NTFS. Just no security enabled so I am think I am ok, no?
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a b $ Windows 7
November 27, 2009 8:46:38 PM

To copy files and settings from your system drive (XP) use the Windows 7 Easy Transfer Wizard.
To use the W7 Easy Transfer Wizard:
Browse to the DVD drive on your computer and click migsetup.exe in the Support\Migwiz directory.
When you are finished installing W7 and your programs run the Wizard file to restore them back into W7.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 27, 2009 9:10:10 PM

bpatters55 NTFS has permissions by default, and if the user accounts on creation were set to private then you will not have access unless you are 1) an admin and 2) take ownership of the folder
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a c 209 $ Windows 7
November 27, 2009 9:23:09 PM

Ah, yes - the gurus at Microsoft have dumbed down the user interface when you use "Simple File Sharing'. And I think I might recall that the security UI isn't available on XP Home edition, only Pro.

You'll still have to worry about permissions for files in personal directories. It may be easiest to just use the Easy Transfer Wizard as Jonmor suggested.
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November 28, 2009 5:20:27 AM

bpatters55 said:
Understood but the drive is NTFS. Just no security enabled so I am think I am ok, no?


Much helpful advice in this thread. I would only add one piece of advice, and that is to take your data disk off-line while you do the install (remove power cable). Many a tired professional has had an 'oh ***' moment by not doing this one simple step...
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a c 209 $ Windows 7
November 28, 2009 3:35:29 PM

croc said:
Many a tired professional has had an 'oh ***' moment by not doing this one simple step...
Sound advice! The difference between a pro and a smart pro is that the smart pro knows that sooner or later he's going to make a mistake, so he tries to arrange things so that it's harder to screw up.
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November 28, 2009 4:32:57 PM

Good points. Thanks to all.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 3, 2009 2:04:56 PM

Bpatters55,

It is always advisable to perform a backup regardless of separate partitions. Please note that when migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7 you will not have an "in place upgrade" option. You will however have the option to select "custom" install when prompted. The Windows 7 install process will then copy all of your data in "My Documents" over to a Windows.old folder within Windows 7 itself. All applications and documents stored in other locations will have to be reinstalled / transferred manually.
For more information on the Windows 7 Upgrade, please go here: http://bit.ly/3DvynK
For additional assistance with the migration of Windows XP to Windows 7, please go here: http://tinyurl.com/mhbep4

Jessica
Microsoft Windows Client Team
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December 3, 2009 6:40:54 PM

Wow! Thanks. Did not know the Microsoft folks lurked out hallowed halls here at T's Forum.
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April 17, 2010 5:36:23 PM

Well,

I didn't have the opportunity to do all the things you have all suggested. I had a nice xp laptop whose motherboard died. I bought an equally nice win 7 laptop thinking I could convert the licenses on most of my software and access my data. That's been partially successful but going to take some time to do completely. Not only that, but I find that my documents and photos aren't easily accessible from win 7. I have almost three terabytes on external hard drives with hundreds of folders. I sure wish I'd have been able to get a new copy of win xp. Life would have been so much easier. My business, books I'm in the process of writing, photos spanning more than 50 years, etc., are all on those drives.

I found someone who has xp, but won't be able to use her computer as a host to fix the problems for another week.yet. Why did Microsoft make things so tough on us. If some of the folks from microsoft are out there, please help. I could sure use an easy fix to the situation.

Thanks,

Bob Christopulos :hello: 
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January 19, 2013 6:51:05 PM

sminlal said:
You'll need to do these steps for every folder tree you need to access. Start at the root (highest level directory) of each folder tree. For a non-OS disk, you can start at the root folder for the disk, but for an OS disk you shouldn't do that because you might change the protections on the OS files and folders and that's not a good thing to do.

1) Right-click on a folder and select "properties"

2) Click the "Security" tab

3) Click "Advanced"

4) Click "Change Permissions..."

5) Click "Add..."

6) Enter "Everyone" into the "Enter the object names to select" box, then click "OK".

7) In the "Permissions" list, click the checkbox beside "Full Control" in the "Allow" column so that a checkmark appears in it.

8) Make sure the "Apply to" drop-down list above the permissions pane says "This folder, subfolders and files", then click "OK".

9) Click "OK" on each of the dialogs until they're all closed.


omgggggggggggggggggg you help me outttttttttttttttttttttt thanksssssssssssss a ton :lol:  :kaola: 
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