Do you want to restore read-only folders back to normal ones after Windows 10 update? Well, this is pretty usual to search for such queries online if you are facing a similar issue after upgrading your System recently. In general, you get the standard answers even from Microsoft which simply doesn’t fix the problem.

Here, we have discussed four different methods to restore Read-Only Folders back to normal ones. They are using Controlled folder access,  change attribute of the folder, disable third-party antivirus and change the permissions of the drive. Let’s explore them in detail-

What may cause this error message

There are several possible culprits that may arise read-only folders bug on your System. Here, in this article, we explain the most generic ones-

  • Windows Update– Performing a Windows update may alter the account permissions. In this, your files will keep reverting back to read-only.
  • Account Permissions– Some apps may modify account permissions.

Fix- Restore Read-Only Folders after Windows 10 Update

The possible and effective workarounds for this issue are as follows-

Log in as an Administrator

Before proceeding to any real workaround, you should check whether you have the authorization to open a file at hand. Many times, users tend to create multiple accounts on their system, thereafter sign in without administrative privileges. By default, guest users can’t modify any existing files which belong to the owner’s account. If that’s the case, you have to login as an administrator then try to access that particular folder again.

2. Using Controlled Folder Access

We have worked on this quest and found an interesting result. This new feature is basically a Controlled Folder Access-a part of the Windows Defender Ransomware protection section. To access its dialog box, press Win+S hotkey together to open the Search box. Here, type its name thereafter make a click on the best-suited option. By default, its setting is turned ON, all you have to do is to turn off the toggle switch. Following this workaround may solve this bug and you must be now able to save files again in your specific folders.

restore Read Only Folders

Note: If there is a third-party antivirus installed on your system, you won’t see Controlled Folder Access. This is due to the fact this software has taken over this section. You need to uninstall such external anti-malware programs, reboot your PC and try this method again.

Change the Attribute of the Folder

If even after logging in as an administrator, you are not able to open a file, you should use the command prompt to change the attribute of the specific file. Here is how to proceed –

  • At first, press Win logo + X hotkey together then choose Command Prompt (Admin) from the list.
  • Use the following code to remove the read-only attribute, hit Enter at the end to let execute this code.
attrib -r +s drive:\<path>\<foldername>

Note: The above command code will turn the file’s attribute into a system attribute after removing its read-only feature. In some cases, you may not even access the files that have the system attributes. Hence, you must try this command-

attrib -r -s drive:\<path>\<foldername

4. Change Permissions of the Drive 

In case, you have recently updated your Windows 10 to newer builds, try to change the permissions of a particular drive that contains these files. Doing this may fix this issue. Here are the steps to follow-

  • At first, make a right-click on the drive which contains read-only files/ folders.
  • Thereafter, choose the Properties option from the context menu.
  • Henceforth, navigate to the Security tab.
  • Succeeding after, hit the Advanced button then select Change permissions.

restore Read Only Folders

  • Here, highlight your user and press on the Edit option.
  • Again select this folder, sub-folders, and files that lie within using the drop-down menu.

Under basic permissions, tick against checkbox Full Control then hit OK.

restore Read Only Folders

If you do have multiple accounts on your System, you have to enable inheritance for each user account. Here’s how to proceed-

  1. At first, go to your System drive (the one where Windows is installed)
  2. Now navigate to the Users folder.
  3. Make a right-click on your username then select the Properties option.
  4. Hit the Advanced option under Security Tab.
  5. Lastly, hit Enable Inheritance.

restore Read Only Folders

5. Disable Third-party antivirus

If the error still exists even after applying the above methods, this might be due to the presence of a third-party antivirus program on your PC. An anti-malware software detects some files as a threat and hence blocks their access. If that’s the case, you should disable this software from your system and see whether it does solve the issue or not.

In case, disabling the Antivirus program solves the restore Read-Only Folders error message, you should change the attributes of the concerned files and folders. After rebooting your PC, try to open these files again. If the issue pops up again, you should better uninstall this program.

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