Why don’t I have permission to store files on my external drive?

Katie October 21, 2011

I had a computer with Vista and now I have a computer with Windows 7.
I used to use an external hard drive E:. Now I can not store things on it. Everything is READ ONLY and it says I have to ask permission to use it as a backup devise. It is formatted with NTFS. Why did it work with my other computer and not this one? How can I give myself permission to use it as a back up device again?

    October 23, 2011 at 5:51 am

    Hello, what you tried running checkdisk on the write protected drive?  Doing this might at least let you write to the disk:  To do so, do the following:

    -- Make sure your external drive is connected
    -- Click on Computer
    -- Right click on the drive
    -- select properties
    -- on menu, select Tools
    -- select the Check now button
    -- let the process finish
    -- disconnect external drive
    -- connect drive back
    -- Try to see if you can access drive

    You can also use the diskpart command to see if you can change the attributes of your drive.

    -- click on start
    -- type cmd on search bar
    -- type diskpart
    -- enter admin password
    -- type list volume
    -- once all the volumes are listed, find the one that belongs to your external drive
    -- select the volume number for your external drive and once you know it
    -- type select volume (type the number of your external harddrive instead of #)
    -- once it tells you that the volume you typed is selected,
    -- type the following:  attributes disk clear readonly
    -- exit diskpart

    You might have to run the attrib command to make sure because once you restart your system, windows 7 might restore the old settings for the drive.  To do so, follow the instructions above to open command prompt.  Once open type the following:

    x:>attrib -r /s /d

    x:> change to external's drive letter
    /s  search pathname including all folders
    /d  to process folders

    For more info about attrib command:

    When you were using Vista, did you use this disk to store music controlled by Media Player?

  2. Mike
    October 22, 2011 at 2:22 am

    With the change of system your users UUID has changed and therefor only has limited access to the drive duo to the Access control list

    Technically you have to adjust the NTFS ACL of the external drive for your new user ~ sounds more complicated than it is.

    1. right-click and drive and select properties
    2. go to the Security tab
    3. click on Advanced
    4. go to the Owner tab and click on edit

    Now select your user out of the list (if not listed click on "Other users and groups" and search for it). Check the box that says "Replace owner on sub..." and click on apply.

    If you wish you can also go back to the "Permissions" tab now and adjust them but basically the above should do the trick for you.