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Windows 7: Missing files, missing "user" folder, can't access local drive

29 Dec 2013   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
Missing files, missing "user" folder, can't access local drive

Hello to all!

I'm new to this forum and obviously i'm not sure if this is the right place for starting and posting this thread.

Since i'm pritty desperate i'm going to explain the best i can what is really happening and how it all started:

since a few days ago i was noticing that a few files, specifically mp3 files are missing from my music collection. I managed to recover the missing ones and transfer the whole collection to a new drive without issues. Today i've found that some recently downloaded files, including several mp3's where missing again from the new HDD. I started to look around the internet abut the problem and what could be the reasons that causes my files to "vanish" from my HDD. As i was reading, i stoped at one thread in other's site forums that related to some "security" and "user privileges" issues in Win 7. I then tried to "fix" the problem but noticed that the files where still missing.

Next thing i tried was looking for the missing files in some AppData subfolder named something like "virtual backup" or something. That was the last time i saw the "user" folder and the last time y accessed my local drive. Turned out the folder just dissapeared from the screen after a short "access denied" dialog box (error). After that, all of my desktop icons dissapeared and my c: drive went like it's empty and can't be accessed, still i can see the drive lying there and every time i run a virus and malware scan, it search the entire c: drive with no problem.

Had tried a system restore to a previous state, every icon on the desktop where there again, but still, no local drive.

Now i'm running out of ideas and i really need to fix this!

I will appreciate any help you can give me!

Thanks in advance!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2013   #2
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

Viruses do things like that. The scenario sounds familiar. Scan with Malwarebytes. The free version is good enough.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2013   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Viruses do things like that. The scenario sounds familiar. Scan with Malwarebytes. The free version is good enough.
Already did with MalwareBytes Pro while running in Safe Mode. Found 24 issues.

Now i have access to local drive. Did a few changes in the "owner" and "permissions" setups, still, there's 3 different accounts with my name on them and i had to actually configure all 3 the same way, with same privileges in order to regain access and control of local C:

Still want answers and any help given would be nice!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

26 Aug 2014   #4

Windows 7 Home x64,

I had a similar experience when I accidentally made c:/users a hidden folder (and all the folders inside it). I was like the OP attempting to find things in C:/users and thought that they might be hidden, and in previous version of windows, there is a check box to display hidden files, but in fact the real cause of the files not being displayed was the extra level of hiding ("Folder and search Options" and found the "Show all folders" unchecked!"). When I accidentally made my user' folder hidden I had various things disappearing and lost the user of both firefox, and explorer from the start menu.

The solution for me was to open a directory in desktop, navigate to C:/ in explorer Organise>Properties>View show hidden files. This will show the hidden user. Then inside user right click, properties, and uncheck the hidden attribution and apply.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Missing files, missing "user" folder, can't access local drive

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