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# Resetting messed up NTFS Permissions This document explains how to reset the messed up permissions of a directory or file. This will reset permissions to their defaults. Defaults being a two step process: 1. Removing all explicitly defined permissions of the object and all children 2. Enabling permission inheritance on the object and all children. In essence this assigns an object the permissions it would have if it was just created by regular means. ## `CAUTION` Do not do this on directories you don't manage, especially the `Program Files` and `Windows` directories and subdirectories. You should only do this if you somehow locked yourself out of a directory you created and manually resetting permissions would take too long. It's also useful if you want access to an old harddrive or an external disk formatted using NTFS. ## Preparation [Get full system access](#full_access). This is optional and you can just launching a command prompt using administrative permissions instead, but this might fail ## Directory This will also reset the permissions of everything inside of that directory. - Type `takeown C:\Path\To\Your\Directory /R /D Y` to become the owner - Type `ICACLS C:\Path\To\Your\Directory /reset /T /C` to reset permissions to their defaults. ## Files - Type `takeown C:\Path\To\Your\File.bin` to become the owner - Type `ICACLS C:\Path\To\Your\File.bin /reset` to reset permissions to their defaults.