[Tip] Add “Take Ownership” Option in Files and Folders Context Menu in Windows

Many times you need to take ownership of a file or folder in Windows. For example, when you want to customize Windows UI and need to replace existing system files with a new one.

You have to follow number of steps to take ownership and grant yourself full permission and control to access the file or folder. But now you can do it in a single step.

You just need to download following zip file and extract it. You'll get a .REG file. Run the file and accept the confirmation:

Download "Take Ownership" Registry Script

It'll add an extra option "Take ownership" in file and folder context menu:

Now you can right-click on any file or folder and select "Take ownership" option. It'll make you the owner of the file or folder and you can perform your desired operation on that file or folder.

An extra uninstallation registry script is also available in the ZIP file in case you want to remove the option from context menu.

PS: If you want to know what kind of command does the context menu option "Take Ownership" execute when you click on it, here is some interesting information for you:

We have assigned 2 commands to the context menu option, so whenever you click on "Take Ownership" option from context menu, it executes those 2 commands to take ownership of the file/folder and assign full control to you.

Following are the 2 commands which are run by the context menu option:

To take ownership and grant full permission on a file:

takeown /f filename

icacls filename /grant administrators:F

To take ownership and grant full permission on a folder:

takeown /f foldername /r /d y

icacls foldername /grant administrators:F /t

You can run the above mentioned commands in Command Prompt to manually take ownership and grant full permission and control on any desired file or folder via command-line. Just replace filename and foldername terms in the commands with the actual file name and folder name.

NOTE: If you face any problem while taking ownership of a file or folder using context menu option, you can try to take the ownership manually using the method given in following tutorial:

[Guide] How to Take Ownership (Permission) of a File or Folder Manually in Windows?


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Posted in: Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8 / 8.1, Windows Vista, Windows XP

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  • Just wanted to say a big "Thanks" for the information and .reg file allowing me to take ownership of folders.
    I have two hard drives in my machine and Windows7 corrupted on one earlier this year and I re-installed the O/S on the second drive. This meant I wanted to delete all the Windows stuff on the original drive and I wasn't allowed ot as I wasn't the Trustedinstaller! I have now cleared many Gb's thanks to this great bit of software! Thanks so much!

  • Thanks a ton dude :D
    could't edit any documents/files/folders as all the permissions were taken by some S-1-5-21-676910019-30 user, this little program WORKS !!

  • Thank you! This is exactly what I've needed for a very long time. Using the security tab, I already *had* 'full access' but I couldn't delete things still. This has solved the problem once and for all! Win 8 64 bit.

  • Thank you so much. I've deleted files and folders in my harddrive that are giving me head aches.

  • Wow!!! Finally a working solution. The extra "Take Ownership" thing works like a charm!!!!
    Thx guys!!!

  • Thanks Man..... It is perfect.. really good.. one

  • A big thank you for this! It's what I've been trying to find this whole week! Thankyou!

  • Thank you, Vishal, for being a caring, sharing, hard-working, generous human being. Sadly, there is a terrible shortage of people like you in this world. The project I was working on that led me to this web page is to change my Windows MS Paint in Windows 8 and 7 to the older version without ribbons and which can copy and paste things with transparent or opaque background and let you set/edit the canvas size, etc.--features that new MS Paint versions with ribbons have cut out. Anyway, thank you very much for your help. To rename a file like MS Paint, Vishal recommends you modify exe files manually on ownership so that they can still be run as administrator.

  • Great solution worked like a charm.....Win 7 64 Thx VG

  • Redundant, since everyone is saying "thanks", but I had to add mine as well. Total headache saver.

  • THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This has helped me SO SO much

  • Thank a lot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I finally solved my probem!

  • You are the heat! Finally got rid of Bit defender that even their own uninstall program couldn't! Thank you a million times and then some!!

  • Thanks a mil! Windows 8.1 takes the power away from the sysadmin. this just made my day and allowed me to delete a shared folder with screwed up permissions.

  • Thanks Bro.. !! youre the best.. Thanks a lot.. !! Awesome... ;)

  • Thanks for this script. A final solution after trying for more than an hour. One problem less with Windows 8.1.

  • Thank you for taking the time to help others. I truly appreciate it. The folder and file ownership issues in Win 7 are bonkers, a regular weekly annoyance, and your script works perfectly when it comes time to clean out the clutter. I wound up here on a google search, but am going to go looking for a Paypal "donations greatly appreciated" link on your site... thanks for being the Good Guys.

  • Deepest gratitude for this! I could not get the manual steps to work but this script does it for me no problem. Thanks again!

  • It works for Windows 7. A big THANK YOU!!!

    Thank you for your processed instruction. It worked.

  • thanks alooot a simple way wver just install the registry thanks man cheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeers :)

  • hu WoW - it works like a charm.

    Thank you so much

  • Wowwww...relaxed now. thank you very much.

  • did not get the take ownership in menu item. using windows 7 64

  • my bad. had notebook as default run program. working now. Sweet!

  • Thank You ,so much. Finally, my problem was solved on Windows 8

  • it says something like "the current logged on user does not have ownership privileges on....." when i try to gain access to system32 folder by the cmd commands in windows 7

  • How would you set it to run on a key binding? Because I'm trying to take control of a lot of files that I want to get rid of, but when I select more than a certain amount of files, the option disappears from the right-click menu. I want to be able to use a key binding like Alt+Ctrl+B or something, because I don't know how to use it when it's gone from the right-click menu.

  • hi

    this looks like the solution I was looking for. I am trying to recover a user on a laptop 2.5 inch HDD (via an enclosure). For some reason I cant get any access to this drive except on one specific desktop which had no connection with the laptop (different network etc). Both run windows 7 64 and my desktop at home runs 8.1 32 bit. Anyway, i have a question: how long can i expect the process to run in cmd screen? Its been 1 or 2 hours already for a 320gb drive. The user i want to access will have most of the 320 assigned to it.

    many thanks.

  • sorry: i forgot to ask how will I know when it finishes running? is there a message?


  • VG

    ^^ It'll complete, when the CMD window disappears.

  • Wow! Holy shyt man you saved me flipping hours of manual labour there. Was beginning to think i would have to cut my losses and reformat. Thanks sooooooo much!

  • Good, works like a charm, btw I rather use the extra option on folder content menu, than whole files ownerships, virus/malware would have total access if your admin user get compromise.

  • hello thank you so much! works perfect!! w8 x64

  • Coulden't set ownership for a single file, to rename it, so i picked whole folder (system folder!)...I now managed to change the file name and would like to revert ownership setings to that folder back to default ownership settings. How do I do that?

  • VG

    ^^ Check following:


  • i can install it fine and i can take ownership of folder with the the take ownership there is visible in context menu
    after that i open the folder and try same with the .exe file i don't have permissions for, but now there is no take ownership option in menu,that option its gone.
    so the solution is not working.

    i am using windows 7 professional with service pack 1

  • VG

    ^^ The option has not been enabled for EXE files intentionally. You can take ownership of exe files manually using following guide:


  • Do Windows makers ever test their systems?? I bet they use Apple @ chew their free time on it, lol :) Vista was pretty useless, XP ran perfectly when u install only necessary stuff, and no update or surf, now Win 8 is bit annoying too...just they make so many stupid issues. Windows make your next platform a working platform and test it! Now Microsoft I ask...why you need to take ownership on something what you already own?

    Thank you so much this is really working for registry! Working stuff and solutions are hard to find. Blessings (y)

  • As for taking ownership of an EXE, what if you deleted the current RunAs key for exefile, then substituted your .REG method. At conclusion, restore original normal exefile RunAs Administrator key??

    Just a guess so far, but searching the internet for a way to take ownership of exefile in HK_Classes_Root someone's code seemed to be doing just that.

    Yes, I think at times it might be necessary to overcome malware.

  • I can see the file names which are in Green Color in the particular folder. But i couldn't open the file. Its saying as "Not having proper perimission" But i checked with my Internal IT team, they confirmed that the folder/file name is having full control.

    This issue i am facing after installating the 64 bit windows 7 os. Previously, its was 32 bit windows 7.

    Please suggest.

    Thanks in advance,

  • VG

    ^^ Try to take the ownership manually:


  • Thank you so much for this. I freaking hate Windows with the annoying admin rights when I do have admin rights... I could not delete the stupid mpsigstub file and this worked perfectly!!

  • OMG, it worked! Thank you very much for the help. Awesome! :)

  • Thanks for help us to remove this virus !!!

  • Does this work in Windows RT 8.1? This would be nice to unlock the "Windows Apps" folder to delete the files that make the annoying banner style ads on metro apps.

  • VG

    ^^ Yes. It'll work in all Windows versions.

  • The little program did not work for the iCloud Photos folder in which by the way I am the administrator.

  • apparently doing it the hardway wasnt good enough. (going to advanced and taking over from there) the folder i tried to delete still wouldnt let me do it. your take ownership reg worked beautifully.

  • Still won't let me open my excel file after taking ownership of file by running

  • Thank you so much! It has been a fight to the death getting that accursed GWX folder and its insufferable prompts purged off of my computer. Bloody malware.

  • Why has .exe been disabled by default (couldn't taking ownership of any system file be just as potentially dangerous)? and how did you disable it when it was placed in "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*"? Am I incorrect in assuming that the * reg key folder is a wildcard type folder that anything in this folder will be on the context menu of all file types? Like I use files2folders which takes any file and dumps it in a folder of the same filename. It is placed in "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*" If that is not the case could you fill me in on the reg folder (if that's what it's called)? Also if I were to want to add this take ownership fix to .exe would I simply create two new entries to the install and uninstall .reg files that changed the * in the file ownership portion of the .reg (as opposed to the folder part) to exefile? ( [HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\ ---> [HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile\ )

    Thank you in advance if I do not see your response in a timely manner

  • VG

    ^^ Yes. To add the option for EXE file, you'll need to do the same for HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile key.

  • To be honest i wasn't expecting it to work (considering i did try everything i could find) but it must be a command promt miracle of some kind because it worked brilliantly.
    Thank you very very much ;)

  • This did not work for Windows 10. I've tried removing Microsoft Edge in any way possible, though not being allowed. The last thing I have done now is taken over the folder, but instead of letting me remove it, it keeps telling me I need authorization from myself, although nothing comes up for me to accept or deny. the entire error:

    Du behöver behörighet att utföra den här åtgärden
    Du behöver behörighet från ROBINS_HP\malla_000 för att ändra mappen
    Skapad den: 2015-07-10 13:04

    Sorry for the swedish but that's exactly what it's saying. It's telling me i need authorization from my own account to proceed. Help!

  • Hi VG,
    Odd problem...
    When I use Take Ownership Registry Script to install this, seams it works fine, but when I uninstall the Context Menu using the Take Ownership - Uninstall.reg I cannot run, for example Command Prompt as administrator. When I select "run as admininstrator" on any shortcut E.G. Command Prompt I receive an error something like "C:\Users\Armond\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Accessories\Command Prompt.lnk is not a valid Win32 application. OK."
    Could you investigate it?

  • Thank you so much for your information and time in writing it up, much appreciated! Saved me lots of headaches! Cheers!

  • VG

    Open regedit and go to:


    Now make sure values of (Default) and IsolatedCommand are set to following:

    "%1" %*

  • Hello,
    Yes. Both values are setted to "%1" %*
    I still can't run almost anything as administrator after uninstalling your script.
    Also, I found that installing "Take Ownership - Install.reg" actually replaces "run as administrator" in start menu items.

  • VG

    ^^ Of course. Thats what its supposed to do. It replaces Run as command with take ownership command. But the script given here doesnt do that with EXE files. So it might be possible that you also used some other script given at other website which caused this issue.

    Make sure in regedit, following key also contains correct values as mentioned in my previous comment:


  • thanks so much...dear if you would near to me so i would be must hug yu...........thanks sooooooo much

  • Hello,
    Will I need to completely crash my computer or should I do a restore point? I am unable to uninstall the Windows 10 installer that keeps popping up in the Windows update despite setting update to manual, the KB 303553 file has been uninstalled and does not show in installed software anywhere and I think I need to know of any other KB files that need to be uninstalled too. Something is wrong because the Windows 10 wants to install along with my regular updates. How do I return my computer to only Windows 7 updates when I am not having the same screen shots in trying to get to 'Trustedinstaller'? Your screen shots do not match mine and I am running Windows 7 Premium. Instead of 'Computer>Local Disc C>Windows' I see 'Computer>Tl106304W0E(C:) and in the area of files instead of 'System 32' I see 2 sets of program files that may be the same function as 'System 32' that read as follows:
    'Program files 4/3/2015 3:32 AM' and:
    'Program files (x86) 8/12/2015 7:53 PM' When I click them I do not get the same screen allowing me to go to Security to get to the 'Trustedinstaller' files to make the changes shown in your screenshot. Also, when I go to shell32.dll file it asks me to pick a program or have microsoft find one on the web for me (I never purchased the complete Windows 7 when I got this computer and instead use OpenOffice.org's software that is analogous to Windows.
    I have little IT experience but usually I have solved problems in the past with our computers just by following directions.

  • VG

    ^^ First of all try the solutions given in following tutorial:


    Also try to reset Windows Update to clear downloaded update cache:


  • Thanks VG for your superhelpful tips.
    God love you, bro.
    Best regards

  • Thanks a lot...im so worried and now im soo proud of u

  • I LOVE YOU! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • HELP! HELP! HELP! Windows 10 Notification has become (like) a VIRUS!

    My computer is being held hostage. I cannot stop Windows 10 Notifications for installation (a countdown) I DELETED KB3035583 AND KB2976978 .... I've also tried to claim ownership but nothing works!

    The notifaction will not stop. This is a huge pop up style, that interrupts my work several times a DAY ... even though I try to "reschedule"

    Please help me!

    Your time and consideration is appreciated. Thank you

  • VG

    ^^ Check following:


  • Thanks a lot! My laptop had somehow locked my hard disk so i could not access my files from any other computer. This worked like a charm!

  • Works great in Windows 10, now I can format the old drive from my XP box without losing about 35 gigs of data!

  • This did not work on my Windows 8.1 machine, what else can I do? There's also a GWX folder in System32 along with the wow folder.

  • So I've tried this and the other page on deleting files I don't have permission for.
    The other doesn't work for me, so I tried this. Well, When I press the 'take ownership' the cmd.exe appears for a moment, says Error: 'Access is denied', then closes. :-(

  • VG

    ^^ You can try the manual method:


  • Thank you.

    Again and again!
    Now I can access my own data, after nogood, unhelpful @*!% Microsoft .


  • i am unable to open downloaded file and its not extracting the file.. ???? plz help. i cant open google chrome, outlook or any excel file..

  • Tnk. I had on the desktop one folder that don't want to delete.This is amazing.

  • Tried everthing and even had contact from microsoft and still could not delete folder ... installed this and voila worked a treat

  • Works like a charm. It always surprises me finding trustworthy people on the internet.

  • Perfect! works like a charm and exactly what I've been wanting. Finally able to remove so much of this MS Bloatware that windows 10 has been cramming down my throat like a cheap hooker!

  • I used your script to gain ownership of the GWX folders and it worked perfectly!

    Thank you very much!

  • The first thing that I want to say is "I Love Your Website".Thank You very much for the .reg file. I could not find any solution to delete a folder in my system but this .reg allowed me to take ownership of the folder and delete it. THANK YOU!

  • So I'm facing the same problem in Windows 10 as Chris above. I made myself owner of the file and gave myself full permissions, but now when I try to delete the folder I am informed that, instead of needing permission from TrustedInstaller to do so, I need permission from myself. Any idea what's going on here?

  • Thanks. That solved my problem with a folder in Windows 10

  • Tried above put keys in registry ran program lots of white writing going up in command prompt $WINDOWS~BT still there have full control over it as well can not delete it has it got to be a hidden folder to work as its showing in my c drive folder thanks

  • Absolutely brilliant! Had the annoying GWX folder and its contents running processes that I did not want. This did it. Thank you for helping us have more freedom with our machines.

  • Oh my God, thank you very much, I almost went crazy trying to solve this problem, but this solution solved my problem. Again, thank you very much.

  • Thank You so much! Now I've removed a malware : )

  • I downloaded and ran the registry script on my Win 7 system (so that I can use resource hacker to get rid of the branding on the logon screen), but immediately a message came up saying "a device is not working" or something like that. I restarted, then my usual windows logon screen was blank (black) with just a mouse cursor visible, but I am not able to do anything. Any ideas on how to fix this? Safe mode results in the same thing. I cannot repair my windows installation using the win 7 installation disc because repair requires me to be logged on. Please help if possible.

  • VG

    ^^ The take ownership registry script cant cause any problem. It seems you modified a system file which caused this problem.


    You can boot using Windows 7 setup disc and then enter into recovery console and then run sfc /scannow command in command prompt.

  • This File working amazing
    Thanks a lot is really trust

  • Oh my Godness!
    This little program make my goddam old disk which contains the sandboxies folder be deleted!
    I got this "S-X-X-XX-XXXXXXXXXX-XX" unexist user permission for years!
    And I target on delete folder from any kind of way, but no solution is work.
    The problem I have is that I used sandboxie before I reinstall windows, and then i want to delete the sandboxie folder from my new windows, then got the problem like Rohan did.

    Thanks for these little permission command, save my disk space :D

  • Effective and easy -- a wonderful solution. Thank-you.

  • When I try to take ownership it says "unable to locate xx" am I doing something wrong? I right click and then left click on "Take Ownership"

  • I was searching all over the net trying to figure out how to remove folders that would not delete, no matter how many times I attempted to change permissions. What seemed so difficult to do, you made so easy with this script. Thank you so much!

  • This answer is exceptional. All other sites saying about safe booting, unlocker software, etc. But this answer hits the exact point to solve the irritating problem. Thanks!

  • Thanks so much, this has been a major pain since windows 10

  • Thank you ,
    Finally, something that should have been done in a second turned into a project.
    Much appreciated.

  • Thank you so much for this.
    I was literally so frustrated that I had 70gigs of unknown data lurking in the Windows Store files, a bunch of failed download attempts it had just kept instead of deleting them. This allowed me to finally free my drive of this issue. I couldn't even see the files at first they're hidden so deep. This has really saved me money on a new SSD.

  • Thanks a lot ....awesome ....thumbs up (y)

  • Installed the Take ownership script and it added Take Ownership context menu and Voila !!

  • You my friend, positively ROCK. Thank you!!!!!

  • thx

  • You Sir are a hero!
    Thankyou! It worked like a charm!

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