Files disappeared from folders after changing security settings

By clark123
Dec 8, 2009
  1. Hello,
    I am using a pc at work with Windows XP.
    I have an administrator account, but also the administrators can access this computer with their accounts.
    I copied a large folder containing projects and documents from another external usb hard disk into a subfolder located in the desktop.

    I double clicked that folder and changed some security settings in order to prevent the other administrators to access that folder. Windows issued a warning saying that when changing the security settings for a group of users, it may affect other users too.
    Unfortunately I did not care and clicked yes.

    I logged out, then I logged in again, and now I can access the folder but it looks empty! all the files have totally disappeared, also in safe mode.
    They are not found by the "search tool", they are not in the recycle bin, and they were not found by FreeUndelete software.

    Please Help!
    What can I do to get those files back?

    *** EDIT: ***
    I was able at least to see the files by searching the entire volume c:\ for any file created on the correct date.
    They are also visible through the disk-space-analyzer software TreeView.
    Rather strange that through explorer they are still not visible, and also by using 'dir' on the command prompt displays a seemingly empty folder (0 bytes) :-/
    I am now trying to copying them into another new folder. If everything goes fine I wont reply here anymore.
  2. scuzzo

    scuzzo TS Rookie Posts: 50

    Have you adjusted the system settings so that you can see hidden files?
    Start>Control Panel>Appearence and Themes>Folder Options>View>Show hidden files and folders
  3. sundi712

    sundi712 TS Rookie

    in order for you to chance the security settings on a Desktop folder you had to uncheck the box that says to inherit the permissions from the Parent folder, meaning the folder above it in the hierarchy. When you uncheck this box, all users are removed. Did you add your user to have permissions?

    If you did then the permissions may not have been transferred from the folder to the files for some reason. There is also an option that says "replace permission entries on all child objects...". Try checking this box and click Apply or OK to see if this resolves the issue.

    If you are still having trouble I would just recommend resetting everything. Remove any manually added users and recheck the inherit option
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