11 Ways to Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors on Windows

By Vernon Roderick, Last updated: July 13, 2022

Using File Explorer and managing our files has always been in our everyday life as a Windows user. One moment we’re searching on the browser, the next moment we’re checking our folders. In short, accessing folders is our very routine. However, sometimes things don’t end well for us. This is especially true when you encounter the access denied folder errors on Windows.

Most likely, you are going to be locked out of your precious folder. This means you won’t be seeing your files for a while, which in turn may end up bad on your side. It can either affect your studies, job, or whatever you may need the folder for.

Either way, it would be best to know how to solve the access denied folder errors on Windows as soon as possible, and that’s what we’ll be talking about today. Without further ado, let’s head to our first option.

Part 1. The Easiest Way to Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors on WindowsPart 2. 10 More Recommended Ways to Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors on WindowsPart 3. Conclusion

Part 1. The Easiest Way to Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors on Windows

Although there are many ways to bypass the access denied folder errors on Windows, the easiest solution is by using third-party software to completely ignore the error. For that reason, we recommend the use of the FoneDog Data Recovery tool.

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There are many things you can do with the FoneDog Data Recovery. You can even recover files that were deleted from the Recycle Bin. To fix the access denied folder errors on Windows, follow the steps below:

  1. Launch the FoneDog Data Recovery tool after you download and install the software.

You will be taken to a window with a list of File Types and Drives.

  1. Choose which File Types you want to recover. As well as the Drive from where the folder you want to access is located.

The next window will take you to a selection of files.

  1. On the left panel, navigate to the access denied folder.

Upon clicking the folder in question, you will get a list of files on the right side.

  1. Select files.
  2. Click on the Recover.
  3. Wait for the recovery process to finish.

However, if the folder that you’re using the tool for has no problem whatsoever, then there’s no guarantee that the features would work. So to compensate, we’ll discuss more solutions to bypass the access denied folder errors on Windows.
How to Recover Data from Folder

Part 2. 10 More Recommended Ways to Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors on Windows

Way 1: Take Ownership of Directory

Access denied folder errors on Windows typically show up when you don’t have the permission to access a directory. Although you can give yourself privileges, it would be easier if you take ownership of that directory at once.

This will allow you to open the folder, regardless of whether you really are its owner or not. So to fix the problem, all you have to do is assign the ownership of the folder into your account, and here’s how you can do it:

  1. Launch a session of File Explorer.
  2. Navigate to the folder that you want to access.
  3. Right-click on that folder then select Properties.
  4. On the popup window, you’ll get, click on the Security.
  5. Click on the Advanced.
  6. In the Owner field, you’ll see the name of the owner. Click on the Change button beside it.
  7. Select Advanced.
  8. In the Select User or Group field, click Find Now.
  9. Among the search results, you’ll see a list of names. Find and select the name of your user account then click on OK.
  10. On the Select User or Group field, click on OK.
  11. Click on the Apply.
  12. Keep on clicking OK until the task is complete.

At this point, certain permissions should already be added on your account for that specific folder. However, in some cases, this won’t be enough.

Way 2: Add Permissions

Although taking ownership can give you permission to use the folder, it would still not guarantee that you’ll bypass the access denied folder errors on Windows. Simply put, if you want to be accurate, you will have to add the permissions manually yourself.

You should be able to do this if you follow these instructions:

  1. Open File Explorer.
  2. Go to the folder that you want to access.
  3. Right-click on the folder and select Properties.
  4. Go to the Security.
  5. Under the Group or user names section, click the Edit.
  6. Select the User Account to add permissions on.
  7. At the bottom of the window and under the Allow column, check the boxes of permissions you want to grant.

With this, once you pinpoint the problem, you can easily solve it by choosing to grant the account-specific permissions.

Way 3: Reset Your Permissions

Despite the importance of having permissions for a folder, there is also a chance that this would backfire and result to access denied folder errors on Windows. In short, if you add permissions recklessly, this will somehow cause you problems.

To fix the problem, Windows offers a way to reset your permissions easily, and you can do this by following these steps:

  1. Open an instance of File Explorer.
  2. Navigate to the parent of the folder that you want to reset the permissions on. The parent folder is the biggest folder where your folder is located.
  3. Right-click on the parent folder and select Properties.
  4. Go to the Security.
  5. Click on the Edit.
  6. Select the User Account you are currently using.
  7. Click on Remove.
  8. Now click the Add button beside the Remove.
  9. On the Search field, type in the name of the user you just removed.
  10. Once the user pops up, select it and click on OK.

Permissions are only a tiny part of the access denied folder errors on Windows. Sometimes, what you need are privileges.
Reset Your Permissions Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors

Way 4: Enable Built-in Administrator Account

The Administrator of a system is often the one with the most privileges. With that said, you can assume that accessing folders would be a piece of cake for them. By using this account, you will have access anywhere without exceptions.

Alas, using the account can be very difficult. Fortunately, you can gain a part of the privileges by simply enabling the Administrator, and here’s how you can do this:

  1. Go to the Start menu by clicking on the icon at the bottom-left corner of your screen.
  2. Type in “cmd” at the Search bar.
  3. Once the cmd option pops up, right-click on it then select Run as administrator.
  4. On the Command Prompt, type in “net user administrator /active: yes” then press Enter on your keyboard.
  5. Type in “net user administrator ” removing the <> symbols and replacing the password with your admin password.
  6. Type in “exit” then press Enter to close the Command Prompt.
  7. Once you logout, you will be able to see the Administrator as one of your options as a user.

If the access denied folder errors on Windows still persist, then you might want to level up your game.

Way 5: Add Your Account to Administrators Group

By level up your game, this means using more of the Administrator privileges. However, we still won’t head to completely setting yourself as the Administrator. All you had to do is add your account to the Administrator group, and here are the steps you need to follow:

  1. Log in to your computer as the Administrator. This should be doable since you already enabled the Administrator account.
  2. Press Win key + R on your keyboard to open the Run.
  3. Type in “MSC” and click on OK.
  4. You will be taken to the Computer Management screen where a list of users will pop up.
  5. Under the System tools, click on Local Users and Groups then select Groups.
  6. On the left side of the window, double-click on Administrators.
  7. Click on the Add.
  8. Now add your user account name to the Input field then click on OK.

Now if this is really not enough to solve the problem, you might want to head to maximize the potential of the Administrator.

Way 6: Set Your Account as Administrator

The only way to completely use the privileges of the Administrator is by setting yourself as one. Although due to security measures, you won’t be able to access it easily. However, the steps are very simple as long as you satisfy the conditions:

  1. Go to your Control Panel.
  2. Click on the User Accounts.
  3. Click on the Change My Account.
  4. Choose the Administrator.
  5. Click on Change Account Type.

With the Administrator account, you should have all the permissions and privileges you can wish for. However, in cases where this doesn’t work, then you can assume that privileges aren’t the problem. You would want to focus on Accessibility features and components instead.

Way 7: Turn Off User Account Control

One of the many features of Windows when it comes to accessibility is the User Account Control. As the name suggests, it disables certain user accounts to have limited control to directories. Although it can be a useful feature, it can sometimes lead to access denied folder errors on Windows. As such, our mission now is to disable this feature by following these instructions:

  1. Go to the Start.
  2. Type in UAC and click on the first option.
  3. Click on Change User Account Control settings.
  4. Use the slider to go to Never Notify.
  5. Click OK.
  6. Restart your computer.

Now try accessing the folder again. If it still isn’t accessible, then the problem must be with the components of the file system.

Way 8: Edit Registry

If for some reason, the folder you want to access is a part of a shared network, then the problem might be because of improper configurations on the registry. So to solve the problem, you will have to make some changes in the registry:

  1. Go to the Start.
  2. Type in “Regedit” in the search box then press Enter.
  3. The Windows Registry Editor should open up.

With this, you’ll be able to do anything you want with the Registry Editor. Although this is the case, we are still not sure what changes are necessary. Regardless, you need to be cautious when handling the registry as it may cause certain errors.
Edit Registry to Bypass Access Denied Folder Errors on Windows

Way 9: Check Environment Variables

Another component of the file system is environment variables. Like in the case of the registry, if the environment variables are not properly set, then the access denied folder errors on Windows would continue to exist. This, with all the solutions we discussed, should be enough to solve the problem. But if not, then there would only be one explanation left.

Way 10: Anti-Virus Software is Blocking Access

Sure, anti-virus software is rather important for the security and safety of your device. However, some software can have some useless features at times. One such feature is the blocking of various features on your Windows.

For one, it can block the installation of applications since they assume that it may cause some severe problems. Thus, you will have to disable your security software temporarily. Unfortunately, you would have to look up the instructions for this yourself since there are different ways to disable different anti-virus software. Regardless, once you’re done with this, there shouldn’t be any messages that will pop up telling you about access denied folder errors on Windows.

Part 3. Conclusion

Many people tend to think that access denied folder errors on Windows will cease to exist eventually if they continue to ignore it. However, it won’t be that simple, otherwise, life would be much easier for Windows users.

There will always be a complicated set of instructions that would be the only way to solve the problem. Fortunately, you’ve read almost all of them in this article. Regardless, you should still remain careful when following these solutions as it may lead to further problems if used incorrectly.

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Vernon Roderick

Technical Expertise for PC/Website Optimization

One of my passion is to develop software of my own

I write articles to share knowledge about IT technology and some experience in developing my own software, and developing my own software is one of my passions for work.

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