I ignored the warning that permissions may not allow me to make changes because I thought I had all the correct boxes checked. Now I cannot see my C-drive because I don't have permission. I can no longer get into the permissions folder or anything else to make changes. Can the files that control this be deleted without destroying the whole registry?
You should be able to log in as administrator and change them back.
Edit: Or try using system restore to the point before this happened.
Neither of these options work. For some reason, when I changed the permissions, it changed the access to the C drive for even the administrator. Everything that I should be able to change has a blue and gold shield in front of it indicating that it is blocked. When I tried runas in safe mode, it said that it wasn't possible in safe mode. I tried it in regular mode and it's locked out again. My last hope is to try a repair with the Windows 7 installation disc. If that doesn't work, I'm out of ideas. Boy I sure didn't want to have to do a reinstall.
6. In Notepad click File, Save As, and then type: reset.cmd
7. In Notepad click Save as type, and then select All Files (*.*).
8. Save the reset.cmdfile to your desktop, and close Notepad.
9. Double-click the reset.cmdfile to reset the Windows Update permissions.
Note This step may take several minutes, so please be patient. When the permissions have been reset, you will be prompted with "Finished, press any key to continue."
10. Press any key to complete the installation.
Check if you have the right permissions to all the folders for all users.
For more information you may check the article given below. The article given is for Windows XP updates, but still holds good for Windows Vista as well as Windows 7.
The problem seems to be that the upper level has been locked out, so that at the lower level where the owner/administrator's name appears the control is higher than at the upper level. Everything about the C-drive has been locked by the administrator, but only things already under the user/administrator is available to them (i.e. me). I can't seem to do anything, including using the installation disc, to bypass the lockout. If I just knew what file to delete or replace then I might be able to get to it the hard drive from a DOS environment and change or replace it. Have any idea what the permissions file is called?
Can you run System Restore to restore your system to a point before the permissions were altered?
No, even if I try to start from the Installation Disc. It seems that even though I am an administrator the settings for the group 'Everyone' includes the administrator, so once the 'Everyone' group had its rights limited then so did the administrator. I must have found at least a dozen ways to get to the correct place to set the permissions, but am always defeated because C has been locked out. It's a little puzzling though, I don't see anywhere that limits reading or 'seeing' the drive, so I don't know why it is completely restricted from viewing. Each user can still see all of their personal folders, even though they are on the locked out C drive, so I'm stumped. I took the drive out and am putting it in another computer as a secondary so that I can copy everything. It would be nice to know if I could delete or replace the file responsible for permissions while I have it in the other computer.
Success! I was able to transfer ownership of the locked drive to the other computer that it was installed in. My first attempts looked like before, so I was concerned that it wouldn't work. Once I gained control, I applied new permissions and sharing. The funny thing was that I got error messages for a long list of files (they appeared one at a time) and I just kept hitting OK. After the messages went away I was able to see the drive again. Accually, there are two segments to the drive (including root directory), so I was seeing two drive letters and not just one. Anyway it worked, so I hope this helps someone else who has a problem with permissions.
As a follow up, I just wanted to let everyone know that the locked drive was 64-bit Windows 7 and the fixing drive was 32-bit Windows 7. I doubt that had anything to do with being able to fix the problem, but you never know.
There were a whole lot of MSI files on the top level of the locked drive after it was fixed and put back into the original system, which I deleted without any side-effects. Also, I had to unlock some other files on the drive that controlled program startups. I don't know if this was due to trying to fix the problem originally when it first happened, or if it was a side-effect of the correction process. Either way, I'm back to running normally again.