problem with encrypted folder

  wobblymike 19:06 PM 30 Aug 11

i have some private files inside a zipped compressed folder which is itself inside a folder. i have had no problems accessing them till now.

my laptop has a single hard drive partitioned into 4 c,d,e,f with c the drive which holds the xp os. the private encrypted files are on the f drive.

i have had the need a few days ago to reinstall the os. to do so i reformatted the c drive and reinstalled the os. everything else is fine except i can no longer access my private encrypted files. when i go to the f drive i open the folder and can the see the compressed zipped folder containing my files. when i double click it i get accees denied message. i have no idea why or how to access the folder. any help gratefully received

  northumbria61 23:39 PM 30 Aug 11

It would help if you said HOW you encrypted them.

  Secret-Squirrel 12:16 PM 31 Aug 11

"i have had the need a few days ago to reinstall the os.......when i double click it i get accees denied message."

It very much sounds like you used the EFS (Encrypting File System) feature that's built into XP Professional. If that's the case, did you export your personal certificate and private key as a file before you re-installed Windows?

  c4rm0 13:19 PM 31 Aug 11

If you encrypted them using EFS which is built into XP it creates a certificate / Key which is stored on the root of your Profile and in your Personal Certifactes store

If you have Wiped the OS i dont beleive you have much hope of recovering them. You could try adding a DRA (Data recovery Agent) using the cipher command via the command prompt

  Secret-Squirrel 15:38 PM 31 Aug 11

"If you have Wiped the OS i dont beleive you have much hope of recovering them."

I've got a bad feeling about this too but all may not be lost, because if IIRC, XP prompts the user to backup their certificate and key the first time encryption is used. If Mike does have that file then it's a straightforward process to import it.

Sadly, creating a Recovery Agent after the OS has been re-installed won't help Mike decrypt his data.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:06 PM 31 Aug 11

If not encryption problem then maybe a profile problem.

Access Files If you get Access Denied in WinXP Pro. Try “taking ownership” of the file/folder before it can be accessed. First of all go to Folder Options, View Tab and in the Advanced Settings at the end, untick “Use simple file sharing”, which will allow the Security Tab to be shown in the file’s properties. Also, in Folder options, make sure hidden and system files can be viewed. To take ownership of the file (it’s best done at the folder level), right-click it, Properties, Security Tab, add your user name, fill in all the permissions and Apply. You can now access it.

Access Files XP Home Simple file sharing is enabled by default in XP Home Note You must be logged on to the computer with an account that has administrative credentials. If you are running Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, you must start the computer in safe mode, and then log on with an account that has Administrative rights to have access to the Security tab. or or and click on the link at part one and download the required program. Follow the instructions and the security tab will be enabled. PLEASE READ CAREFULLY OR YOU COULD DENY ACCESS TO ALL YOUR FILES.


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