Getting the Access denied Windows 11 error? Try these fixes

Loredana Harsana
by Loredana Harsana
Windows & Software Expert
Loredana is a passionate writer with a keen interest in PC software and technology. She started off writing about mobile phones back when Samsung Galaxy S II was on top of the world and... Read more
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  • When attempting to access particular folders or apps, the Access is denied notice may display, interfering with your work.
  • The first thing you should do is alter the directory's owner.
  • Your antivirus software could be the source of this issue, so make sure you check it out.
access denied window access denied windows 11
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The Access is denied error prevents you from uninstalling or accessing particular directories on your computer, but in most cases, you can circumvent this error by simply switching to the administrator account on the PC.

The reason behind this could be that you don’t have the proper permissions or that there is a dispute between various files on your computer’s hard drive.

If you wish to resolve these issues, as well as grant yourself complete file permissions, have a look at the steps outlined below.

Why am I getting the Access denied error in Windows 11?

People have expressed dissatisfaction and inquired as to why access to folders on their personal computers has been prohibited. Is Windows in troubleshooting mode or has it become corrupted?
folder denied   access denied windows 11

Access denied can be caused by a variety of other issues, such as a file or folder being moved, copied, corrupted, or deleted.

The most common explanation for this is that you do not have permission to view the files because you have not granted approval in your computer settings. It’s possible that your user name hasn’t been preserved as an administrator.

Sometimes, there are also ownership issues that result in a similar Access refused error or your file may be encrypted, which leads to this error.

It is possible that access has been prohibited owing to third-party antivirus software. Some programs can mistake a genuine setup wizard to be something else, which is otherwise false positive detection.

The best methods and tools to make it feasible for you to access the files are explored in further detail, in the upcoming section. 

How do I fix the Access denied error in Windows 11?

1. Use Computer Management

  1. Right-click on the Start button and choose Computer Management.
    comp management windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  2. Expand Local Users and Groups, then open the Users folder.
    local users windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  3. Right-click on Administrator, then tap on Properties.
    admin prop windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  4. Uncheck the box next to Account is disabled and press the Apply and the OK button in the bottom side.
    disabled acc windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  5. Click on the Groups folder in the left side, right-click on Administrator, then tap on Properties.
    group admin windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  6. Click on the Add button.
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  7. Enter the word test in the opened window, click on Check Names, then press the Apply and the OK button in the current window as well as in the Properties window.
    test windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working

2. Set your account as administrator

  1. Press the Windows key + R then enter control userpasswords2. Lastly, click the OK button.
    control userpassword windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  2. The User Accounts window will now appear. Check the box next to Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer, then select your account and click on the Properties button below it.
    user prop windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  3. Navigate to the Group Membership tab. Select Administrator and click Apply and OK.
    admin choice windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working

Restart your computer once you’ve completed the procedures outlined above in order to determine whether or not the problem has been resolved.

3. Disable your antivirus software

Although antivirus protection is extremely necessary, it is possible that a third-party antivirus program will cause this error to display.

Users have reported that they received the Access is denied warning when attempting to install specific applications and that the cause was their security software.

To resolve this problem, you only need to temporarily disable your security program and then retry the installation of the application.

If the problem does not appear, it is likely that your antivirus program was the source, and you should consider picking one of these antivirus solutions for Windows 11 to protect your computer.

4. Check your permissions

  1. Locate the problematic directory, right-click on it, and choose Properties from the menu.
    new properties windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  2. Next, navigate to the Security tab and click the Edit button.
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  3. Select your user name from the list and make sure that you check the box next to Full control for Allow column in the Permissions sections, then click OK.
    allow permission  windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working

This is a rather simple solution, but if your user name isn’t on the list you’ll have to add it manually and then change its permissions.

5. Enable the hidden Administrator account

  1. Press the Windows key + S , type in cmd, and right-click on the most relevant result to Run as administrator.
    run as admin windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  2. When Command Prompt starts, run the command below. By doing so you’ll unlock the administrator account:net user administrator /active: yes
    net user addmin windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  3. Now log off of your account and switch to the newly enabled Administrator account. From there you should be able to access your files without any problems.
  4. After you’re done using the Administrator account, go back to your main account and start Command Prompt as administrator again as we did in the first step. Now enter this command to disable the Administrator account:net user administrator /active: no 
    net user addmin no windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working

Keep in mind that after switching back to your main account the issue might persist. If needed, you can use the Administrator account to make the necessary changes to your system and fix the problem.

6. Take ownership of the file

  1. Locate the problematic folder, right-click on it, and choose Properties from the menu.
    new properties windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  2. Navigate to the Security tab and click the Advanced button.
    advanced secuirty windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  3. Locate the Owner section at the top and click on Change.
    change owner windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working
  4. The Select User of Group window will now appear. In the Enter the object name to select field, enter Administrators or enter your user name. Now click the Check Names button, then tap the OK button to save the changes made.
  5. Check the box next to Replace all child object permission entries with ingeritable permission entries from this object and click Apply and OK to save changes.
    replace all child windows 11 lock screen slideshow not working

Take ownership via Command Prompt

  1. Press the Windows key + S in then enter cmd, and click on the most relevant result.
    cmd search   access denied windows 11
  2. Type or paste the following commands and press Enter after each:
    takeown /f "path_to_folder" /r /d y icacls "path_to_folder" /grant administrators:F /T
    takeown cmd    access denied windows 11

You will have to replace this section with the actual path to the inaccessible folder or file:path_to_folder

After running these two commands, you should have full access to them. Reboot your computer once you’ve completed the procedures outlined above in order to determine whether or not the problem has been resolved.

How can I fix Access denied when opening a website?

If you receive an Access denied warning when attempting to open a certain website, it is most likely due to a network-related problem that is limited to your browser.
browser access denied   access denied windows 11

This would be the entire error message: Access Denied – You do not have permission to access on this server, coupled with a URL that could not be reached with a reference number.

The Access denied issue arises when your browser attempts to connect to your Windows 11 PC using a different proxy setting or VPN than what is actually configured. This problem is most likely caused by a network-related issue with your browser.

As a result, if a website detects that something is wrong with your browser cookies or your network, it will block you, which is why you will be unable to access the website.

Disabling the VPN software will resolve the Access denied problem. Alternatively, make an attempt to clear your browser data or data for a specific website. You might also try resetting your web browser.

If these fixes don’t help you, turn off any private network extensions, or use a premium VPN service that is fully compatible with the OS.

Check out our post on not having permission to access a server for further solutions and a more in-depth description of the situation.

If you discovered that your antivirus software was the root cause of your problem, you may want to consider using another one in the future. We’ve compiled a list of the top five antivirus programs that include encryption.

If it comes to that you require additional information or solutions to the specific File access denied error, please see our article that was previously written for Windows 10 and may still be applicable in Windows 11.

In addition to the solutions listed above, a registry cleaning method can be followed to scan and fix any potential issues.

Let us know which procedure worked for you in the comments area below.

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