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Windows 7: I am not authorized to save to C:\ !!!

27 Jun 2013   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
I am not authorized to save to C:\ !!!

What the--? I am the owner and sole user of my personal computer, my account is an administrator account, and, for some reason, as of late, when I try to save a file on C:\, I am told that I am not authorized and for me to contact my administrator. I AM the administrator! Can anybody help me understand what's going on here? Why did Windows 7 hijack my computer and how do I get it back?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2013   #2

Windows 10 x64

What happens when you right-click on the C: drive, choose Properties, Security tab. Then choose "edit" and add the Administrators group.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2013   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thanks for your reply. The administrators group is already there. Here is what is listed (Peter-XPS17 is the computer name)(I've listed the permissions that are checked in square brackets):

Authenticated Users [Allow: Special Permissions]
SYSTEM [Allow: Everything except Special Permissions]
Administrators (Peter-XPS17\Administrators) [Allow: Everything except Special Permissions]
Users (Peter-XPS17\Users) [Allow: Read & execute, List folder contents, Read]

It won't let me add the other permissions to that last one.

I added Administrator and my user (me), gave both full control and told it to save. I got errors on certain files and then it said that it could not update Windows.

It is annoying that you can sit here and just use your computer normally and then this starts happening. Thanks for your help, though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

27 Jun 2013   #4

64-bit Windows 10 Pro

Hello Peter,

Windows will not let you save anything from an external source directly to a system folder or root of C: for security purposes. Instead, you must save it into a user folder (ex: desktop) or a C:\Users\Public folder first, then you will be able to copy/move it from there to C:\ with administrator approval via a UAC prompt.

Hope this helps,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2013   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

What does "with administrator approval via a UAC prompt" mean and how do I do that?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2013   #6
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

UAC=User Account Control and is enabled by default in w7. There will be a popup dialog asking if you want to perform an action, just click OK/Allow, etc. This gives said action full Administrator privileges.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2013   #7

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

By default when you log in with an Admin account to any version of Windows since Vista you do not automatically have the full rights of that account. The reason is security. By default any process will have the same rights as the account under which it runs. If your account has the right to overwrite or delete critical system files, any process you run will have that right too. If that process happens to be malicious the entire system is at it's mercy.

But with Vista and later, even when you log in with an admin account, you initially have only the rights of a limited account. If you happen to download malware it has only the rights of a limited account. A such it will be crippled and unable to do much harm. It will also be more difficult for a novice user to accidentally do dangerous things.

When you try to run programs that need full admin rights, such as many in the control panel, you will be asked for permission. If you agree that program will have full admin rights. There are other ways as well to grant yourself full admin rights for specific purposes.

This is what UAC (User Account Control) is all about. It improves security at the expense of convenience. It is possible to disable UAC but should understand the implications, and there is far more to it than I have explained here.

This article tells you more:
What is User Account Control?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jun 2013   #8
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 I am not authorized to save to C:\ !!!

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