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I have low to medium tech skills;however, I can follow directions flawless and am easily teachable. Had a Dell xp e510 motherboard that went bad. Bought a new destop with internal drive and hooked the old xp drive up via usb and external sata dock. The new windows 7 system immediately recognized the xp drive however most (95%) of the pictures and items created in Microsoft office and Corel Draw, pictures, etc. are not discoverable...I know they on there "somewhere" however, I don't know how to find them and make them accessible. Ultimately I would like to take the Data from the old XP drive (now showing up as F) and consolidate it all to the new systems C Drive. Directions to do this as detailed as possible would be sincerely appreciated. I have seen blogs where it says that it has to do with "permissions" however I'm not sure what that is referring to. Like I said...Step by step would be golden...

Thanks in advance for any help

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Most user documents in Windows XP will be in a folder called "Documents and Settings" and in that folder there are folders for each of the user accounts on that machine. Inside those folders, you should see "Desktop" "'s Documents" etc. Your files "should" be in there somewhere.

When opening the folder, Windows 7 will probably prompt you to override the existing permissions. Assuming your XP install is no longer bootable, you should be able to acknowledge this warning and go on your merry way. It might take a bit for the machine to go through all the files in the subfolders to reset the ACL (file permissions).

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I know they "should" be there...However, unfortunately they are not discoverable. Is there any way to make hidden files viewable again? With all of the big brains out there someone has to have this same problem.Help!Regardless, Thanks – Thomas Dec 6 '12 at 22:47
by discoverable, what do you mean? are you using f3(search) to find them? via usb and letting windows discover files on the removable volume will only work if the permissions are such that the logged in user has permissions to the files. On the old drive, that wouldn't be the case as the SID would be different for the user account. basically your username's ID isn't the same as on the old drive so be default it won't let you see them. You can show hidden files in the "folder options" control panel, but the files aren't actually hidden, you just don't have permessions to them. – MikeAWood Dec 7 '12 at 22:22

Like Mike said, all of your files should be in "Documents and Settings," but you will probably have to change the permissions on these files to be able to see them in Windows 7. To do this,

  1. Right-click on the Documents and Settings folder and select Properties and click the Security tab.
  2. Click Advanced and then the Owner tab
  3. Click Edit... and then choose your user name in the Change owner to: box
  4. Check the Replace owner on subcontainers and objects box
  5. Click OK and then Yes when Windows asks you if you want to assign yourself Full Control of everything in the directory
  6. Click OK and wait while Windows changes the permissions

After this process you should be able to read everything in the Documents and Settings folder.


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