After clean install of Windows 10, how do I cleanly take ownership of my old Users folder?

Hi,

The scenario:

  • After major problems with Windows 10, the OS became corrupted and I was finally forced to do a clean install from a bootable USB that I created using the Media Creation Tool.
  • Under my previous Windows installation, I had relocated my user-folder to a separate HDD to conserve space.
  • I also made a backup of my personal files (created by the "Back up and Restore (Windows 7)" tool which comes with Windows 10 (found in Control panel) before making the clean install. However, Backup skipped several files because it does not backup files which reside on the same disk as where the backup is saved.
  • I performed the clean install by creating a local user account which I named identically to my old setup (so my user folder got named identically), and I then connected this local user account to my MS account. Windows displays itself as "Activated" in Control Panel / System and Security / System.

I would like to:

  • Again relocate my users folder to my HDD (my SSD is too small to accommodate it)
  • Re-claim ownership of my old user-folder on the HDD
  • Link OneDrive & Dropbox to the already existing Onedrive/Dropbox-folders within my old User-folder

I understand that it is possible to take ownership of my old user-folder, but I'm not good with Windows permissions and SID's and I'm uncertain how to do this cleanly so that I won't cause some unexpected trouble down the road. I would like the User-folder in the same state as if I had performed an in-place upgrade preserving my personal files.

Many thanks in advance!

Hi,

Thank you for posting your query in Microsoft Community.

You may follow the steps provided below and check if it helps to resolve the issue.

Method 1: Folder permission

  1. In File Explorer, right click on the documents folder.
  2. Click Properties.
  3. Click the Security tab.
  4. Click on Edit to change the permissions.
  5. Click the box to allow Home Users full control.
  6. Click OK and make sure the change is applied to all subfolders and files.

That should fix the problem if not try 2 method.

Method 2: Try taking ownership of the folder (and by "the" folder, I mean any one having an issue). If they are all in one folder, use that one. If it's all of them, start with C:\Users\(your username) and work from there.

To take ownership:

  • Right-click the folder and go to Properties
  • In Properties, go to Security (tab) > Advanced (button at the bottom) > Owner (tab)
  • In the Owner tab, the current owner will be listed. Yours will likely say it's unknown but regardless, if it doesn't say your current username (and if the username is the same, just do it anyway), click Edit (button).
  • Under "Change owner to:" select your current account, check the box next to "Replace owner on sub containers and objects" and click OK. Depending on all that's under the folder, this may take a long time.

After you are the current owner, you should be able to change permissions as you need.

Hope this helps in resolving the issue. If the issue persists, do get back to us. We will be happy to assist you

Thank you.

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Thanks,

I read this article to better understand permissions. Then I did something close to what you suggested in Method 1. I gave my new account Full control permissions of the new Users\<MyUserName>\ directory. I then removed the unknown user SID (left over from the old Windows installation). I also took ownership exactly as you suggested in Method 2.


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Last updated August 8, 2020 Views 2,741 Applies to: