4+ Fixes For “You Need Permission to Perform this Action” Errors

In this post, we’ll provide 4+ fixes (with video guides) for the “You Need Permission to Perform this Action” error.

All versions of windows have distinct features and commands. However, most of the errors that occur while executing different actions in Windows 7, 8, 10 and Vista have similarities.

Anyone who has ever used a window-based computer has likely come across the “You need permission to perform this action” error. This isn’t an unusual error since it occurs most often when different computer actions are being executed.

The error may occur when you are making changes to a Microsoft word or excel document, when dealing with a folder, or when trying to move a file from one folder to the other. It may also occur when trying to access a document located in a distinct location in your PC’s partitioned hard disk storages.

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What Is ‘You Need Permission to Perform this Action’ Error?

‘’You need permission to perform this action” error is a common problem computer users have to deal with. It’s one of the most annoying errors that tend to happen while you are in the middle of completing an action.

The error occurs mostly when you are trying to access a locked or opened folder or file to make changes. It could also happen when you are trying to delete or move a file or folder that’s being supported or scanned by your Antivirus program. It can also occur when making changes to a document that’s being used in another program.

The occurrence of this error doesn’t call for an alarm. It’s an obvious error and can be easily resolved with the right actions.

How to Fix “You Need Permission to Perform this Action” Error

Video Guide: You Need Permission To Perform This Action!! – Howtosolveit

If you are in the middle of something urgent and happens to see this error, you shouldn’t panic as there are a lot of easy solutions that you can follow. These are just some of them:

1st Fix

The first solution is to change the directory ownership. This is an easy and effective fix that won’t eat your time. It’s even recommended by O’Reilly as a simple and effective fix for this error.

  1. To start, you have to locate the file or folder showing the error and then click on its properties.
  2. While on the properties table, navigate to the security tab and then click Administrator on the group and user names.
  3. Find and click on the advanced button that’s found on the lower end.
  4. In the owner section, click on the Change owner button.
  5. In the user or group window, choose the advanced settings.
  6. In the advanced settings, click on the Find Now button, and choose the group to be given full permission on the PC and then close the window by clicking the OK button.
  7. On the permissions tab, click the add button and then select a principal; the permission will then be granted.

You may have to repeat the 5th and 6th steps to change the ownership and permission to your desired group or user.

2nd Fix

Changing the original ownership and access permission of a document is certainly the most effective way to make it accessible and editable. However, the way to change the ownership and accessibility permission vary.

The good news is that you can use the command prompt to change your document ownership and accessibility permission. This is simply the easiest and most reliable solution so far.

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Your PC’s Command prompt makes it easy to make abrupt changes on a document’s ownership and permissions.  These are the simple steps to use the Command Prompt to quickly change the permissions and ownership rights of a folder or file in your computer:

  1. On your computer keyboard, press the Windows and X keys at once to open the Command Prompt page.
  2. Select the Admin or PowerShell Admin Command Prompt from the list.
  3. After the Command Prompt pops up, key in Takeown/f<path to the folder>r/y and then click on the enter button. This Command prompt is made for changing the ownership of the specified file or directory.
  4. Now, enter icacls<path to the folder>/grant administrators: F/T and then run it by pressing Enter. This command prompt will grant the selected group of administrators’ full control over the directory.

For this command to work, you have to enter the name of the user or group you want to give the full control over the file or director. You can easily do so by replacing the <path to the folder> with the specific directory and file location giving you the error message.

Video Guide: How to Change Ownership – Permission Problems

3rd Fix

You can also use the file checker. The system file checker is an internally built windows tool that allows easy scan and repair of corrupted system files. For the seasoned windows computer user, you know that when files are corrupted, your computer will misbehave, and one of the errors it may give is the ‘You need permission to perform this action’. Here are simple steps to use the SFC to resolve this error.

  1. On the start menu, type cmd, and hit the Enter Key.
  2. On the Command Prompt that appears, choose on Run as Administrator.
  3. Key in SFC/scannow, and give the checker time to scan your computer.
  4. Restart the computer and then change the corrupt file or folder.

Video Guide: How To Run The System File Checker Tool In Windows 7

4th Fix

Though not always, your Antivirus may be the reason your files and folders are misbehaving. Making a few tunes to the antivirus program can help solve the issue.

One of the safest ways to do this will be to disable the antivirus and try making changes to the file. If disabling the antivirus doesn’t work, you may have to uninstall the antivirus completely.

If after uninstalling the antivirus and your corrupted and damaged files and folders will work out fine, you may need to replace the antivirus with another more secure option. There are tons of Antivirus programs around. Some are offered for free and others at a cost. But make sure you get the best antivirus for your system if you want optimum functionality and performance.

Forum Feedback

To find more about “You don’t have permission to perform this action” error, we searched through several supports forums. In general, users were interested in you don’t have permission to perform this action Outlook/Owa/ Hotmail, and Exchange. In addition to this, they wanted to know more about you don’t have permission to perform this action doordash.

A computer owner says that he started getting an error saying, “You don’t have permission to perform this action” when he attempted to send an email through Outlook. He was running Windows 10, and he wasn’t sure why he was getting it and how to resolve it. So, he decided to ask for help online. Other users advise him to check the status of the service through the Microsoft page because it would show him if something is missing or not running right.


Another user comments that he received ” You don’t have permission to perform this action” message in Outlook and he couldn’t send any emails. Other users pointed out that it might be the result of a conflict with other software. So, they say that he should turn third-party antivirus programs and check if that will allow you to send emails. In addition to this, he says that you should consult Microsoft page on Outlook problems if you’re still experiencing issues.

A user said that he had issues with Exchange 2013 after it was updated and mailbox users couldn’t receive or send emails.

  • All the emails were getting saved as drafts, and he kept getting the “You don’t have permission to perform this action” error. He tried creating a new user mailbox and checking if he had set the permission options correctly, but the problem still persisted.
  • Finally, he realized that the issue was that the DNS lookups were not configured, and as a result, Exchange couldn’t transport the messages.
  • The person advises that you get a professional to look at the configurations since it’s not a job for novices.

Another poster observed that you might get the “You don’t have permission” in Exchange and Outlook if your firewall is blocking the mail. So, you have to check to see if all Exchange ports are opened so that you can access the Exchange server.


A forum member complained that for more than six months he was unable to use Outlook properly because he kept getting “You don’t have permission” errors.

  • So, he contacted Microsoft support for help, and they suggested that he should try to repair his Outlook files. You can do that either by going to Microsoft page and download the Repair Tool for Outlook or go to an Outlook folder and start Scanpst.exe file.
  • If that doesn’t work, the person suggests that you create a new Outlook profile to check if the issue is related to a damage user profile or damaged Outlook files.

Another user also mentioned that Outlook wasn’t working properly and that repairing the files didn’t clear the permission error. However, creating a new user profile solved the problem, and the good thing was that all the files transferred to the new profile so that he didn’t lose anything important.

Another poster explained that one of the most common reasons why you get such mistakes is that you don’t have the necessary permission to execute the action. So, he suggests that you switch to your administrator account and try again. The person also observes that you can check if the problem will reappear on another device so that you will know for sure which the culprit is – our computer or account.

An individual remarks that if you suddenly can’t access your files and folders and you keep getting a permission error, you’re most likely dealing with a virus. So, he says that you must boot the device in Safe Mode and scan it with a trusted antivirus program. However, the user warns that some viruses which change the permission settings are difficult to get rid of and you might need to install your Windows anew.

Another poster suggested that you check the settings of the file or folder you can’t access and see who has the permission to access it. Then you might change the ownership of the file/folder. Right-click on the problematic file/folder à Properties à Security tab à Advanced àOwner à Change. You enter “Administrator” or your name and then click Ok and try to perform the action again.


With these, you’ll already know how to gain access on your files and folders on Windows 7/8/10 and Vista. While simple, these solutions are researched well so that you’ll have a better and smoother experience on your computer when this error occurs.

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