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Access C:\USERDATA Folder?

Posted on 2007-12-01
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Last Modified: 2010-08-05
Someone brought in an HP Windows XP Media Center PC and he had already tried and I think successfully deleted a trojan virus he told me about. However, I guess he tried repairing the computer using the CD, some removal tools and some other methods. He said he's missing pretty much all of his files now such as documents. I found a folder called "USERDATA" in the C:\ drive but I can only access the main folder using the cacls method in http://support.microsoft.com/kb/309531. I tried booting into safe mode but I still can't access any of the subfolders or files. I checked the "Security" tab but it says that "HP_Administrator" has full control of the folder. How can I access the folder?! Thank you
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Question by:orangutang
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7 Comments
 
LVL 70

Accepted Solution

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KCTS earned 2000 total points
ID: 20389690
Try taking ownership of the folder http://www.winxptutor.com/ownership.htm
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Author Comment

by:orangutang
ID: 20389704
Thank you. Also, do you know if I can mess something up if I gain access to the C:\USERDATA? Is there an official way to copy the data from C:\USERDATA to C:\Documents and Settings? I was able to get a preview of the files and folders using IceSword and it looks like they were the files that were lost but only the files that were originally in C:\Documents and Settings\HP_Administrator
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LVL 22

Author Comment

by:orangutang
ID: 20389737
AAAAHHH! I just took ownership of the folder and restarted and now all of the files are gone except a couple files folders! What do I do?!
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LVL 70

Expert Comment

by:KCTS
ID: 20389770
Taking ownership should not delete anything! - are you sure they were there in the first place?
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Expert Comment

by:KCTS
ID: 20389773
Try making sure that show hidden files is switched on in the Folder Options.
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LVL 22

Author Comment

by:orangutang
ID: 20389809
Oh, wait! I think it automatically moved the files and folders back to the right place after I restarted! Let me make sure, though.
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LVL 22

Author Closing Comment

by:orangutang
ID: 31412146
Thank you! I've seen quite a few solutions relating to taking ownership of a folder on EE but I didn't think it would apply here.
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