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Windows 7: So close! moved Documents and Settings by mistake

13 Feb 2010   #1
rireed3

Windows 7
 
 
So close! moved Documents and Settings by mistake

I think I've read enough about junction points, but it hasn't explained why messing with them is so painful.

I just went from XP to Windows 7, and spotted right away that most of my data from XP Documents and Settings was in C:\Users -- actually all of it.

Since I didn't format the partition, all my old files were still there. I then discovered that they were unwritable because of XP permissions/ACLs, so I was glad I had backed them up.

I moved all the files from XP into c:\files.old, including unfortunately Documents and Settings. When I discovered my mistake, I tried to just move it back to C:\. Nothing doing. I can't remember if I discovered 'elevated command prompts' by this time. I was logged on as Administrator anyway, right?

After too many hours lost sleep trying to move and copy, I gave up and created a new locked down Documents and Settings junction point in C:\ using mklink /J. I used the advanced security settings from the original, now in files.old.

Now I've given up trying to delete the one in files.old. It was easy to rename it to something strange, but that won't stop scanning programs from using it, unless I lock it down, but I would much prefer that it's gone. I downloaded junction.exe from Microsoft, but no matter how I set the permissions in files.old or on the renamed junction point, I always get Access Denied from junction -d. I even tried the same thing after booting from the setup disc.

Anyone else make this silly mistake?

Thanks,
Richard


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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13 Feb 2010   #2
richc46

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 10, Home Clean Install
 
 

To delete windows.old.

Go to c drive

Right click

properties

Disc clean up

check include system files.

It may take 2 or 3 tries but they should be gone.

If that does not work we can try to get you permission.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2010   #3
richc46

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 10, Home Clean Install
 
 

Hopefully, the above will work. If the event that it does not, you might try this and hope.

Take Ownership of file - Vista Forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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13 Feb 2010   #4
rireed3

Windows 7
 
 

Many thanks, richc46, but still no joy. The thing really is in a directory I made called files.old, rather than Windows.old, which was populated by the install itself. I already just deleted Windows.old when I was sure I didn't need anything there anymore.

I find it a little stupid that the original junction point happily moved where I dragged it by mistake the first time, but wouldn't move back!

I also tried this link from the "take ownership" page:
Delete Undeletable Files in Windows Vista My Digital Life

That also left "Access is denied" from junction.exe. I'm beginning to wonder about junction.exe. Surely Microsoft isn't promoting ineffective software. I'm new to junction points, but I've read warnings not to use anything that might walk the target directory when attempting to delete the junction point itself.

I want to second the message in the "what i don't like about Windows 7" thread that said something like "can we have something that tells us on exactly 'what' "Access is denied" and why?"

Thanks anyway,
Richard
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2010   #5
richc46

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 10, Home Clean Install
 
 

Ty for your kind words. I will be upfront with you, I am now making guesses using my judgement, expertise and hope. Try all the suggestions in safe mode, while using the Hidden administrator.

Built-in Administrator Account - Enable or Disable

Disable the UAC.

Make a system restore point, first, just in case.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2010   #6
rireed3

Windows 7
 
 

Success!

I'm not sure whether this could have been done without the hidden Administrator, but from the command prompt, I used the ATTRIB command:

ATTRIB /L xxxxdocsxxx

The funny name is what I had renamed this original junction point to.

/L is important so ATTRIB works on the the junction point rather than its target.

The RH attributes were set, so I just did ATTRIB /L -R -H xxxxdocsxxx

After that junction -d xxxxdocsxxx deleted the old junction point.

Very nearly back to normal.

Thanks again,
Richard
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2010   #7
richc46

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 10, Home Clean Install
 
 

Great, I really am glad for you. As I think about it, I come to the conclusion that it was the combination of your ingenuity and the Hidden Administrator that made success possible. Enjoy the OS and the extra knowledge that you now have.

Good Luck, my friend.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 So close! moved Documents and Settings by mistake




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