Guide to Fix “You Need Permission to Perform This Action” Error on Windows

Windows users must be aware of different error codes showing on their screen, and “You need permission to perform this action” is one of those annoying codes that no Windows user wants to see. It happens because your Windows desktop requires some permission to perform a specific task or action. Even if you want to access a particular file or folder, you’ll need permission, and your PC doesn’t allow you access because that action might damage the operating system in some or the other way. 

Fortunately, you can fix this error by following the methods mentioned below:

Check your account type

The first step to fix this error is to know the Windows account type you’re using. There are three types of accounts, i.e., Administrator, Standard, and Guest. Each account has its defined activities and limitations in Windows OS. To check your account type, go to the Control Panel and click on Users Account. This will display your account type and user name. If you’re using a Guest or Standard account, you’ll require permissions for bypassing restrictions on some folders. At times, Administrator account users also experience this error, but they can resolve it by using their account password. 

Join the Administrator group

You can add yourself under the Administrator group to gain access over the files. Use the following steps to add yourself as an Administrator member:

  1. Press Windows + X key together and select Computer Management.
  2. Go to Local Users and Group and select Users to find the list of users’ accounts on the system.
  3. Find your username and give a right-click to it and select Properties.
  4. Open the ‘Member of’ tab and hit the Add option. 
  5. In the ‘Enter the Object Names to Select’ box, enter “Administrator.” 
  6. Then click on Check Names, and select OK to save changes.

Do not forget to restart your PC before the changes start taking place on your PC. Also, note that this method won’t work for you if you’re on a Standard or Guest account that is restricted by the Administrator. 

Control the folders

The Administrator account holder has the right to take control over the files and folders from any other user group on that system. If the permissions bug out or the other account users change the permissions to access those files, you will find the “You need permission to perform this action” error showing on your screen. To overcome this issue, follow these steps:

  1. Give a right-click to the folder you want to access or gain control over it.
  2. Click on Properties and select Security.
  3. Then, click on Advanced. An Advanced Security Settings window will open.
  4. On the new window, click on Change.
  5. From the new set of options, select Find Now to find the list of users on your system. 
  6. Find your Windows account name, and click on OK. 

Now go back to the Advanced Security Settings window, and check the box to Replace owner on sub containers and objects. Click on Apply to save the settings. This method will remove the error and give you access to the files or folders you want.

Use SFC and CHKDSK

Using this method will enable you to check if there are any corrupt files on your system. For this, you’ll require Windows System File Check (SFC) – an integrated Windows system tool used for checking errors. But before that, you have to use the Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool, or DISM to check if it works properly. Use the steps mentioned below to use DISM and SFC:

  1. In the Start menu bar, enter Command Prompt (Admin). 
  2. Please give it a right-click and select Run as Administrator to open an elevated Command Prompt.
  3. The command might take a few minutes to process and when it completes, insert the “sfc /scannow” command and hit the Enter key.    

Now you need to use CHKDSK to scan the drives for error. Here is how to do it:

  1. Press Windows + X key and select Command Prompt (Admin) from the given menu.
  2. Insert the “chkdsk /r” command and hit the Enter button. It will start scanning the system for errors and will fix them as well.
  3. Restart your device, and then you’ll be able to access the folders.

All of these tricks will earn you permission to access the files and folders you want. And the “You need permission to perform this action” error message will stop popping on your screen.  

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