Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have this problem that my file and folder can't be accessed because of file/folder permission.

And every time I use my usb drive with another computer I need to apply folder permission for each folder I need to access. It is not convenient to do it every time.

Is there a command that will free all the folder and files, and just apply access to "Everyone"?

I have XP and Vista, which one is the easiest to apply this permission?

Any ideas?

share|improve this question
I have tried the command: takeown /F <DriveLetter> /R it did not work. – xybrek Nov 28 '11 at 9:16
What type of USB drive is it and how is it formatted? – HaydnWVN Nov 28 '11 at 10:40
up vote 1 down vote accepted

There is no easy way of doing this for all usb drives, since the permissions are stored on the drive itself, and not on your computer.

But for your specific USB drive, the file permissions need to be set so that User accounts can at least write to it. Even better, just give the "Everyone" group write permissions.

Just right click the USB drive in Explorer and go to Security. Grant the Everyone group write permissions.


Bonus Chatter: By default, if you format a USB drive, they typically are formatted using FAT32, which has no file security. If the USB drive is bigger than 4GB, you'll see that it is formatted in NTFS, which does have file security.

But, by default, there is only one group on formatted USB drives, which is "Everyone" group. And they are granted Full Control. So tell people to quit messing with your drives!!! (I've done this to a number of coworkers out of boredom.)

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.