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Windows Vista File Encryption

Posted on 2006-11-03
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Last Modified: 2010-05-18
Ok,
I'm working on a friends system who installed a Beta Build of Windows Vista and then reinstalled Windows XP.
The problem is all his stored on a secondary disk are now "not accessable". I assume that Vista encrypted them and some kind of unlock process needs to be processed. Any suggestions for what he could do to "unlock" them from WinXP?
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Question by:luscombeengineering
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17871116
If he used bitlocker, then forget it - they're gone.  Unless he saved his encryption key - then he can use the appropriate version of Vista that supports bitlocker and use the encryption key to recover them.
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Author Comment

by:luscombeengineering
ID: 17871130
He did not use bitlocker.
I assume the files are encrypted or 'locked' as just a normal part of vista's my documents level security.
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Accepted Solution

by:
Lee W, MVP earned 125 total points
ID: 17871165
If he's getting "access denied" errors, then you simply need to take ownership of the files.

Reference:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308421
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Author Comment

by:luscombeengineering
ID: 17899166
Thx Leew...
You pointed me in the right direction, but there were still several obsticales to over come. Namely that the security tab was not present / available until I did other things to enable it. Thanks again
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17901571
What other things?
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Author Comment

by:luscombeengineering
ID: 17901733
The security tab when you right click on the folder was not showing. So I looked up the solution and enabled it.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17901791
What was the solution?

Did you see the link i posted - this paragraph is from it:
Note You must be logged on to the computer with an account that has administrative credentials. If you are running Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, you must start the computer in safe mode, and then log on with an account that has Administrative rights to have access to the Security tab.

If that wasn't the solution, then please post it - It would be great for me and others who look at this question later to know the steps taken to get this to work.
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Author Comment

by:luscombeengineering
ID: 17901856
Administrator: yes, I was logged in as this

Windows XP Home: no, the system was XP Professional

The solution:
Open any folder, then go to Tools -> Folder Options -> View , then uncheck the last option "Use simple file sharing"
Then the "Security" tab becomes available.

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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17902286
Thank you!
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