Sometimes when you try to delete a folder in Windows you may get a folder access denied error message instead. It basically states that the user account you are logged in with has not the rights to delete the folder on the system. Often, this comes after migrating to another operating system version or connecting a hard drive with files to the computer you are working on.
The message then reads: Folder Access Denied. You need permission to perform this action. You require permission from the computer's administrator to make changes to this folder. You may also have troubles opening the folder on your system, getting an error message like "folder path" is not accessible. Access is denied.
The best way to deal with this situation is to either add your user account to the list of permitted accounts, or take ownership of the folder outright.
To set permissions manually you right-click the folder in Windows Explorer and select properties from the context menu. Switch to the security tab in the new properties window and check if your user name is listed under group or user names.
If it is select it and check the permissions underneath to make sure you got the right permissions to delete the folder. Since you are getting an error message that the folder access is denied, it is likely that your user name is either not listed here at all, or if it is listed, does not have the right permissions to run the command on the system.
The easiest way to resolve the situation is to click on the advanced button here. This opens the advanced security settings of the folder. Switch to the owner tab, select your user name under change owner to and click ok afterwards. This makes you the owner of the folder so that you can use the folder normally on the system.
If you do not want to go through all the troubles changing ownership of a folder in Windows to delete it, try the Take Ownership shell extension instead. This adds a context menu option to Windows Explorer that you can click on to take the ownership of a folder or file in the operating system.
You can use the following alternatives if above options, for whatever reason, do not work out for you. The first is to use a program like Unlocker, Free File Unlocker or IOBit Unlocker to delete the folder. While this may not work if permissions are the issue, it may work if other issues keep you from deleting the folder. A simple example would be a folder or file in a folder that is still in use.
A drastic option is to boot into another operating system, a Linux LIVE CD for instance, to delete the files and folders that you can't delete from there.
Have another tip on dealing with folder access denied error messages in Windows? Post your questions or solutions in the comments below.
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