While Windows 7 is a largely polished upgrade from Vista, a few headaches have carried over. Among them is a security feature that assigns ownership of many system and program files to an entity called "TrustedInstaller."

Such a design is useful in the presence of inexperienced users, who might otherwise accidentally delete or modify important files. However, for the tech savvy, it can be an aggravating obstacle.

Taking ownership generally requires you to dive in and out of GUI menus, or break out the command prompt. It's far more complicated than it needs to be, and thankfully, there's a very basic fix that should work on any 32 or 64-bit copy of Windows Vista or 7. The shortcut consists of placing a "Take Ownership" option on the context (right-click) menu.

Begin by downloading this zip file, which contains two registry files: one that adds the shortcut and the other that removes it should you no longer want to have this option available.

Assuming all goes well, you should be informed that the necessary registry keys have been successfully added. If the shortcut doesn't work for you, or simply doesn't suit your needs, run Remove_Take_Ownership and the registry entries will be deleted.

For all those neat freaks out there (you know who you are), we also recommend reading this tip that describes how to access your Windows 7's extended context menu, as well as how to edit, add, and remove items on it.

Finally, on a somewhat related note, there's a Firefox add-on that lets you modify your status bar icons, so you can keep that tidy clean install look no matter what.

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