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Windows XP

Establishing File & Folder Level Permissions

In many cases, you will need to change the permissions a certain group or individual user has to a file or folder. For example, you can designate a special folder on the W: drive within your department's area called "Incoming" as a place where students can turn in their work. To do this, you would first need to create a new folder on the W: drive. By default, the new folder will have the same permissions as the parent folder, which would not allow students to submit their work, and may not allow students to even access the folder. You would then need to allow students access to the new folder, and set permissions for the folder. When you set permissions, you are specifying what level of access students have to the folder and its files and what students can do within that folder such as save, delete, or read files.

NOTE: The majority of these instructions refer to MY COMPUTERMy computeron the Desktop. Instead of the text MY COMPUTER, you may see your username followed by the computer name.

This document covers the following topics:

return to topStandard Permission Types

There are six standard permission types which apply to files and folders in Windows XP:

Each level represents a different set of actions users can perform. See the table below for more information.

For folders you can also set your own unique permissions or create a variation of any of the standard permission levels. Within each of the permission levels are many possible variations. For information on some of these advanced options, refer to Advanced Folder Level Permissions.

 The following table represents the available standard permission types:

Permission Description
Full Control Permits the user(s) to:
  • view file name and subfolders
  • navigate to subfolders
  • view data in the folder's files
  • add files and subfolders to the folder
  • change the folder's files
  • delete the folder and its files
  • change permissions
  • take ownership of the folder and its files
Modify Permits the user(s) to: 
  • view the file names and subfolders
  • navigate to subfolders
  • view data in the folder's files
  • add files and subfolders to the folder
  • change the folder's files
  • delete the folder and its files
Read & Execute Permits the user(s) to:
  • view file names and subfolder names
  • navigate to subfolders
  • view data in the folder's files
  • add files and subfolders to the folder
List Folder Contents Permits the user(s) to:
  • view folders
  • navigate to subfolders
  • view folders
  • does not permit access to the folder's files
Read Permits the user(s) to:
  • view the file names and subfolder names
  • navigate to subfolders
  • run applications
  • open files
  • copy and view data in the folder's files
Write The Read permissions, plus permits the user(s) to: 
  • create folders
  • add new files
  • open and change files
  • delete files

return to topCreating a New Folder

In many cases, you will need to create a new folder. If you are using an existing folder and do not wish to create a new folder, continue with Accessing the Properties Dialog Box.

  1. On the Desktop, right click MY COMPUTER » select Explore
    OR
    From the Start menu, select All Programs » Accessories » Windows Explorer
    OR
    On the Taskbar, right click START » select Explore
    Windows Explorer
    opens.
    NOTE: The Start menu option may not always work, due to periodic Start menu reorganization.

  2. From the Folders list, select the shared drive for your area or department (e.g., Nurssh$ on 'Global 1' (S:) or DeptDir on 'Cass1' (W:))

  3. From the right side of the screen, navigate to the location you want the new folder to appear (e.g., within one of your existing folders)

  4. From the File menu, select New » Folder
    OR
    Right click » select New » Folder
    A new folder is created.

  5. In the newly created folder, type the desired folder name

  6. Press [Enter]

  7. Proceed to step three in Accessing the Properties Dialog Box

return to topAccessing the Properties Dialog Box

When working with permissions in Windows XP, you are required to work from the Properties dialog box. This dialog box for the file or folder you are working with can be accessed in a few steps.

  1. On the Desktop, right click MY COMPUTER » select Explore
    OR
    From the Start menu, select All Programs » Accessories » Windows Explorer
    OR
    On the Taskbar, right click START » select Explore
    Windows Explorer
    opens.
    NOTE: The Start menu option may not always work, due to periodic Start menu reorganization.

  2. Select the folder or file you wish to adjust/view permissions for

  3. From the File menu, select Properties
    OR
    Right click the folder or file » select Properties
    The Properties dialog box appears.

return to topGranting Access to a File or Folder

After creating a new folder, or even if you will use an existing folder, you will need to determine who will have access to it. Also, keep in mind that by default the same persons who have access to the "parent" (original) folder also have access to the new folder, and vice versa. For obvious reasons, this may not be ideal. It is a simple process to grant access to other users for any folder you have created.

  1. Access the Properties dialog box

  2. Select the Security tab
    new folder properties dialog box

  3. Click ADD...
    The Select Users, Computers, or Groups dialog box appears. 

  4. In the Enter the object names to select text box, type the name of the user or group that will have access to the folder (e.g., 0231.engl.490.001 or username@uwec.edu)
    HINT: You may type the beginning of the name and then click CHECK NAMES. The name will either be resolved or a list of users beginning with those characters will display for you to select from.

  5. Click OK
    The Properties dialog box reappears.

  6. Continue with Setting Permissions 

return to top Setting Permissions

Once you have granted a group or individual user access to a folder, you will need to set permissions for the new user(s). When you set permissions, you are specifying what level of access a user(s) has to the folder and the files within it. Be careful about checking Deny for any permissions, as the Deny permission overrides any other related Allow permissions.

Folder permissions can be changed only by the owner of the folder (i.e., the creator) or by someone who has been granted permission by the owner. If you are not the owner of the folder or have not been granted permission by the owner, all checkboxes will be gray. Therefore, you will not be able to make any changes until the owner grants you permission.

  1. Access the Properties dialog box

  2. Select the Security tab
    The top portion of the dialog box lists the users and/or groups that have access to the file or folder.

  3. In the Group or user name section, select the user(s) you wish to set permissions for

  4. In the Permissions section, use the checkboxes to select the appropriate permission level
    Checkboxes in permissions section

  5. Click OK
    The new permissions are added to the file or folder.

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