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Windows 7: Setting user name on folders

09 Sep 2010   #11
EpiCenter

Windows
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pjd View Post
@Epicenter - sorry mate, my bad, twice over too

1. I assumed we were talking about drives other than C:

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pjd View Post
2. I should have suggested that your win7 login id take Ownership and have Full Control of the data drives/directories.
Hm, does my having ownership of windows files mean that Windows can't access them as well?

Well, I was talking about all drives - and datawise they are a lot bigger than C - so i guess you could say I was mostly talking about drivers other than C:

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pjd View Post
If you reinstall I suggest you give Windows and application software a dedicated drive, 100G should be plenty.
Hm, I'd have to buy a new drive then. Do you know if Windows 7 slows down with large drives?

I would prefer not to reinstall, then I'd have to activate some programs again (like from Corell, and they are stingy with their activations) (I knew there was a reason one should never buy software


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pjd View Post
Keep all your data on a separate drive(s), don't bother with My Documents, My Pictures etc - leave them in the default locations on drive C: and use them sparingly where you've no other choice - but don't keep anything there permanently.
I would like to move stuff off C, and have been trying.
But you have a problem like "C:\ProgramData" which gets totally filled up with stuff because too many annoying programs don't respect that you want to put your data somewhere else.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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10 Sep 2010   #12
unifex

Windows 7 Ultimate (x64)
 
 

EpiCenter,

There seems to be some confusion going on here.

There can be two separate questions and it seems that it's not clear what your actual problem is.

Problem 1.
You have installed Windows 7 and you have files and folder from your previous OS. These are now owned by unknown user "S-1-5-...". This alphanumeric is the identifier for the user in the old OS, your new OS cannot associate it with any existing user. Depending on how the permissions are configured you might have limited access to these files or even none at all.

Solution:
you need to take ownership of these files AND set permissions right, i.e. allow yourself access. Just taking ownership does not automatically change permissions. To do that, you can follow the tutorials indicated or simply click on properties->security->advanced->owner->edit and change owner. After that close all properties windows, open them again, go to security -> edit and edit permissions.

If you are talking about a lot of files than this is a time consuming process. What you can do is to change these permissions on folders clicking the check-box "Replace all child permissions ..." and similarly with the ownership. If you have old data drives, you can do this with whole drive as well, with one very important exception: DO NOT TAKE OWNERSHIP OF DRIVE C:\!

This brings me to the second problem:

Problem 2.
You have upgraded your OS and have user profiles in C:\USERS\Username from the old OS, now belonging to unknown user "S-1-5-...".

Solution:
Your actions depend on what is it that you are trying to accomplish. If you want to use the data (or any other user-) files, then simply perform the above procedure on the files and maybe folders if you have them, but only within the profile folder itself - do not try to take ownership or rename the C:\USERS\Username folder.

If you want to keep some application settings from that old profile, then maybe it's too late and you should simply manually set the programs right in your new account. There is some import procedure, but I've never actually used it.

Finally, if you are annoyed by the existence of such user profile folders, then once you done with the actual content - i.e. your old files, you can go to Control Panel -> User Accounts, see if any strange account are present, get rid of them and then delete the folders in question.

Now,
Problem 3.
You might have already messed with permissions on drive C:\ creating more problems for yourself. Then follow Brink's advice, and use a restore point from a date prior to doing so. Then start over. Messing with ownership of system files in C:\ may lead you to a dead end and eventually to a complete re-install.

Hope this make the issue clear for you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2010   #13
Blacksmith

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

@pjd - Offtopic - but I would like to know more:

Quote:
...Keep all your data on a separate drive(s), don't bother with My Documents, My Pictures etc - leave them in the default locations on drive C: and use them sparingly where you've no other choice - but don't keep anything there permanently...
Can you outline this idea in depth? Why not keep stuff there permanently?

I use to move my 'My Documents' (or Documentes on Win7) folder as '· My Documents' to the root of drive D: and this worked well on WinXP all the time. I did not use My Pictures, My Music, ... the seemed (and still seem) inconstently implemted by MS. Pitty they can not be disabled completely.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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10 Sep 2010   #14
Barman58

Windows 10 Pro x64 x2 Windows 10 Enterprise x64, Ubuntu
 
 

I always advise the separation of data and OS, if only for the reason that if the OS goes south the damage to data is minimised, It is also better if you ever decide to run a multi-boot set-up.

I always have a data drive set-up that mirrors the windows default user folder tree, on the data drive and then use the location feature to point windows special folders to the correct location. This has it's own root folder named something like data or my stuff etc, and can be duplicated in cases of multiple users.

This keeps the system working in the way Microsoft designed, whilst giving you control of your data, which is the main reason for using a computer

This allows you to set permissions on your data without the potential dangers of altering the system folders that are on even data drives (recycle bin Etc.)

I do this for all special folders even those I do not use often or at all. This is just for the reason of completeness.

As for permissions I never change permissions on the system drive, except for those odd occasions where a badly written application insists on locating it's data on the system drive or even in the program files tree, without the option to change this in the application.

If you have one OS and a single user go to the root folder you wish to set permissions on and take ownership of.the folder and let this cascade down through the tree.

go to the top level data folder, you created, and set the permissions you need (include your actual user name), and remove any un-needed user names, (leave groups such as everyone and authorised users alone), leave the system user names alone also.

when you have the root set as you like you can use the advanced settings on the permissions tab to set all folders and files under the root to the same. This will force the permissions to cascade correctly.

If you have errors during the cascade process that are due to complex permissions history (multiple OS use in the past with the same data (EG the data partition on my main system has been used with probably 20 or more operating systems over the last year or so)), you will need to note the folder involved and repeat the procedure using this folder as root.

Once set up once this will give you full control of your machine in all the areas that you actually need control to use the system
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2010   #15
pjd

Win 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Blacksmith View Post
@pjd - Offtopic - but I would like to know more:

Can you outline this idea in depth? Why not keep stuff there permanently ?
@Blacksmith - I don't really want to get into a lengthy public discussion or pollute Epicenter's thread any more than I have already. Anyway you more or less said the gist of it in your last paragraph.

And I certainly couldn't say it any better than Barman58.

I've used the "location feature" Barman58 refers to and if you prefer or are forced to conform to Redmond's Rules then that's the way to go, but in my experience that's not as necessary as many people think.

For me it didn't add any value, and it added extra work if I moved something. It's probably because I drive everything from the perspective of data using xplorer2 (a windows explorer alternative) rather than process. I think grouping data objects by type represents a worldview that's peculiar to IT professionals. I group data objects by subject matter, irrespective of type.

pjd
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2010   #16
EpiCenter

Windows
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
EpiCenter,

There seems to be some confusion going on here.

There can be two separate questions and it seems that it's not clear what your actual problem is.
Apparently so - I don't quite understand why that is.


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
Problem 1.
You have installed Windows 7 and you have files and folder from your previous OS. These are now owned by unknown user "S-1-5-...".
Yes, this is what I believe I stated in my first post.


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
Solution:
you need to take ownership of these files AND set permissions right, i.e. allow yourself access. Just taking ownership does not automatically change permissions. To do that, you can follow the tutorials indicated or simply click on properties->security->advanced->owner->edit and change owner. After that close all properties windows, open them again, go to security -> edit and edit permissions.
Yes, I know this.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
If you are talking about a lot of files than this is a time consuming process. What you can do is to change these permissions on folders clicking the check-box "Replace all child permissions ..." and similarly with the ownership. If you have old data drives, you can do this with whole drive as well,
Yes, I know this too - except it doesn't work. I tried that, but still find tons of dirs in dirs in dirs down in the tree where permissions are not set correctly - that is why i asked for some easier way to do this (than using the GUI. Especially since i may have hundreds of thousands of files)


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
with one very important exception: DO NOT TAKE OWNERSHIP OF DRIVE C:\!
So I just heard, a little late mind you.


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
This brings me to the second problem:

Problem 2.
You have upgraded your OS and have user profiles in C:\USERS\Username from the old OS, now belonging to unknown user "S-1-5-...".
This is not my problem. I formatted the C drive and installed W7 (and then i formatted again and reinstalled, and reinstalled - and if I have to reinstall that must be the 4-5 time i reinstall Windows 7 - I wonder how many times i can still activate :-/ )

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
Now, Problem 3.
You might have already messed with permissions on drive C:\ creating more problems for yourself.
Indeed.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
Then follow Brink's advice, and use a restore point from a date prior to doing so.
Tried that, but it didn't work. I think what Windows 7 said was that the process failed. Perhaps it couldn't access files it would have liked to access.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by unifex View Post
Then start over. Messing with ownership of system files in C:\ may lead you to a dead end and eventually to a complete re-install.

Hope this make the issue clear for you.
Well you said nothing new which hasn't already be written further up the thread, but thanks for commenting.

Btw, do you agree 100G is a good size for a Windows 7 drive?

I used 20G for XP and that seemed to be enough for XP - though unlikely for 7 it seems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2010   #17
pjd

Win 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

@Epicenter - I suggested 100G because its not easy to buy anything much smaller, unless its SSD. 20G sounds a bit light to me.

My C: drive has 35GB used of which Windows is 17GB, I've only had it since Monday. I keep very little data on that drive, its Windows, Software and Program Data & Settings. All my data including email, irc, newsgroups, Skype chats, DAM databases, program source code etc is on other drives.

pjd
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2010   #18
EpiCenter

Windows
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pjd View Post
@Epicenter - I suggested 100G because its not easy to buy anything much smaller, unless its SSD. 20G sounds a bit light to me.

My C: drive has 35GB used of which Windows is 17GB, I've only had it since Monday. I keep very little data on that drive, its Windows, Software and Program Data & Settings. All my data including email, irc, newsgroups, Skype chats, DAM databases, program source code etc is on other drives.
Yes, I try to keep everything of C as well - as much as it is possible, since many programs insists on storing stuff in %appdata% (what it was called under XP anyway).

Which is also why i have stocked up a on portable programs ( PortableApps.com - Portable software for USB drives The Portable Freeware Collection - Latest entries ), meaning that as soon as Windows is reinstalled most programs already work (if it wasn't for those damn permissions all over the place).

A few bigger programs still insist on abusing the boot drive, oh well.

Would be nice if one could move "User" and "ProgramData" to another drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2010   #19
pjd

Win 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by EpiCenter View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pjd View Post
@Epicenter - I suggested 100G because its not easy to buy anything much smaller, unless its SSD. 20G sounds a bit light to me.

My C: drive has 35GB used of which Windows is 17GB, I've only had it since Monday. I keep very little data on that drive, its Windows, Software and Program Data & Settings. All my data including email, irc, newsgroups, Skype chats, DAM databases, program source code etc is on other drives.
Yes, I try to keep everything of C as well - as much as it is possible, since many programs insists on storing stuff in %appdata% (what it was called under XP anyway).

Which is also why i have stocked up a on portable programs ( PortableApps.com - Portable software for USB drives The Portable Freeware Collection - Latest entries ), meaning that as soon as Windows is reinstalled most programs already work (if it wasn't for those damn permissions all over the place).

A few bigger programs still insist on abusing the boot drive, oh well.

Would be nice if one could move "User" and "ProgramData" to another drive.
I have always mentally segregated data into two broad groups.

1. Program Data, like most recently used, last screen state and all that stuff - ie non-critical data that is there to make life easier, I'm happy to leave that on the system drive with the software. I think that equates to %APPDATA%, I used it yesterday to figure out where to put WinRars License Key rar. Basically I see this data as belonging to the program.

2. User Data over which I want total control. I don't think I have any apps that mandate that I put my data in the same places that MS thinks I should. Many apps on first use assume that images are in My Pictures, pdfs are My Documents etc, but I cant think of any that wont work just as effectively elsewhere. It's possible that I've come across a few that do such things, but I would have given them short shrift.

To relocate stuff in XP, as was suggested by Barman58, I used the TweakUI utility from MS, there should be something similar for Weven, it might even be provided in the base product, but it wont be easy to find.

You can do some of it via the Location Sheets in folder Properties e.g in c:\Users\<whoever>\ the following folders have location sheets in their properties.

Contacts
Desktop
Documents
Favorites
Links
Music
Pictures
Saved Games
Searches
Videos

Beyond that I suspect its registry tweaks, maybe Brinks got some in a toot, or Mike the Mechanic might have a FixIt at Redmond.

good luck - pjd
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Sep 2010   #20
EpiCenter

Windows
 
 

I don't quite make that data distinction (especially since windows seems to grow quickly, suddenly my C drive had balloned and was taking up most of the space, a lot of seemed to that constant stream of patches) . Nor does some of the developers it seems, Google Earth just automatically (without asking) installs the entire program in the data folder! (not even in the program folder). That seems rather stupid.



And what did you say, does Mike the Mechanic work at redmond?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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