Seeing the error 0x80071771? Fix it fast with these steps

Matthew Adams
by Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
Matthew is a freelancer who has produced a variety of articles on various topics related to technology. His main focus is the Windows OS and all the things surrounding it. He is passionate about... Read more
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Error 0x80071771 arises when users try to open/handle a file in Windows 10 or decrypt it via Advanced Attributes. The error message says this: Error 0x80071771. The specified file could not be decrypted.

That issue can arise for a user account that doesn’t have the right to decrypt a file. In other words, a user account the file wasn’t originally encrypted within.

To fix that error, you’ll need to obtain full file permissions for your user account on the PC the file was originally encrypted on before decrypting.


How do I fix the error 0x80071771 in Windows 10?

1. Obtain full file permissions

  1. To obtain full file permission, press the Windows key + E keyboard shortcut.
  2. Click This PC on the left of File Explorer’s window.
  3. Right-click the drive that includes the file you can’t open and select Properties.
  4. Select the Security tab.
    Drive Properties window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  5. Press the Edit button to open the window shown directly below.
    Permissions window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  6. Press the Add button to open the Select Users or Groups window.
    Select Users or Groups window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  7. Enter Everyone in the objects names text box.
  8. Click the OK button.
  9. Select Everyone within the Group or user names box on the Security tab.
  10. Select all the Allow checkboxes.
  11. Click the Apply button.
  12. Click OK to exit the permissions window.
  13. Click Advanced on the Security tab for the drive properties window.
    Advanced Security window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  14. Click Change on the Permissions tab on the Advanced Security Settings window.
  15. Enter Everyone in the object name box of the Select User or Group window that opens.object name box Select User or Group window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  16. Click the OK option.
  17. Click the Replace owner on subcontainers and objects check box on the Permissions tab to select that option.The Replace owner on subcontainers option Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  18. Click the Apply button.
  19. Click the Auditing tab.
    Auditing tab Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  20. Click the Add button.
  21. Then click Select a principal on the Auditing window.
  22. Input Everyone in the object name box, and click the OK button.
  23. Select the Full control checkbox under Basic permissions.
    Basic permissions check boxes Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  24. Click the OK and Apply buttons.
  25. Then click OK on the drive properties window.
  26. Click Restart on Windows’ Start menu.

2. Deselect the Encrypt contents option for file

  1. Thereafter, decrypt the file or folder the issue arises for. Open File Explorer in Windows.
  2. Open the folder that includes the file or subfolder.
  3. Right-click the file or subfolder and select the Properties option.
    properties window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  4. Click Advanced to open the window in the shot directly below.
    Advanced Attributes window Error 0x80071771 on Windows 10
  5. Deselect the Encrypt contents to secure data option.
  6. Press the OK button.
  7. Alternatively, you can decrypt the file via the Command Prompt. Press the Windows key + S keyboard shortcut.
  8. Input cmd in the search box, and right-click Command Prompt to select Run as administrator.
  9. Then input cipher /d “full file path” in the Prompt, and press the Enter key. You’ll need to replace full file path in that command with the full path of the file plus its extension.

So, that’s how you can fix error 0x80071771. Note that the resolution above is intended for PCs on which the file was originally encrypted.

The above resolution will not fix error 0x80071771 if the file was encrypted on a different PC to the one you’re trying to open it on.

If the file was encrypted on another PC, you’ll need to export the EFS (Encrypted File Service) certificate and key for the file from the PC it was encrypted on.

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