Fix: “The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory”

Milan Stanojevic avatar. By: Milan Stanojevic
9 minute read

Home » Fix: “The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory”

Installing new applications on Windows 10 is pretty simple, and while installation process usually goes without any problems, certain errors can occur once in awhile. Users reported The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error that occurs while installing certain applications, so let’s see how to fix this error.

“The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory”, how to fix it?

Fix – “The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory”

Solution 1 – Check your permissions

Sometimes this error can be caused if you don’t have the necessary permissions over the installation directory. According to Microsoft, in order to install certain software SYSTEM group or Everyone group needs to have Full control over the installation directory. You can change these settings easily by following these steps:

  1. Locate the installation directory that is giving you problems. Right click it and choose Properties. Keep in mind that sometimes you might have to change the security permissions for the parent folder as well in order to fix this problem.
  2. Go to Security tab and click Edit.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-security-1
  3. In Group or user names section select SYSTEM or Everyone and click the Full control in the Allow column. If you don’t have SYSTEM or Everyone available, you’ll need to add it. To do that, click the Add button.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-security-2
  4. Select Users or Groups window will now appear. In the Enter the object names to select field enter Everyone or SYSTEM and click Check Names button. If your input is valid, click the OK button.
  5. SYSTEM or Everyone group will now be added. Select it and check Full control in the Allow column.
  6. Click Apply and OK to save changes.

After making the necessary changes, try to install the application again and check if the problem is resolved. As we already mentioned, sometimes you might have to change the permissions of the parent folder, so if you’re trying to install an application to Program Files/My_Application directory, you might have to change the permissions for Program Files directory in order to fix this problem.

Solution 2 – Change the owner of the parent directory

If you’re getting The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error, you might be able to fix it simply by changing the the owner of the parent directory. For example, if you’re getting this error while trying to install certain application in your Program Files directory, you just need to take ownership of Program Files directory. Bear in mind that you might have to take ownership of a different directory depending on where you want to install the desired application.

  1. Locate the parent folder, right click it and choose Properties.
  2. Go to Security tab and click Advanced.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-advanced-1
  3. Next to the owner name click the Change link.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-advanced-2
  4. In the Enter the object names to select field enter Administrators and click Check Names. If your input is valid, click OK.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-advanced-3
  5. Owner should now be changed to Administrators. Check Replace owner on subcontainers and objects and click Apply and OK to save changes.
  6. You’ll get a message to close the current window and open it again. Be sure to do that.
  7. Once the window opens again, check if Administrators and SYSTEM group have full control over this folder. If these groups aren’t available, you’ll have to add them.
  8. Click Select a principal.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-advanced-6
  9. In the Enter the object name to select field enter Administrators or SYSTEM and click Check Names. If your input is correct, click OK to save changes. You might have to repeat this step to add both Administrators and SYSTEM group.
  10. Select Full control and click Apply and OK.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-advanced-7
  11. Check Replace all child object permissions entries with inheritable permission entries from this object and click Apply and OK.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-advanced-8

Keep in mind that changing ownership over certain folders such as Program Files can be potentially dangerous, therefore create a backup and System Restore point before starting this process.

Solution 3 – Run the setup as administrator

Users reported that The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error appears if you don’t have administrator privileges while installing certain software. You can easily fix this problem simply by right clicking the setup file and choosing the Run as administrator option. After doing that, you should be able to install the application without any problems.

Solution 4 – Check the third-party software

Third-party applications can sometimes interfere with your setup process, but you can fix this problem simply by closing them. One common cause for this error can be your security software, therefore we advise you to temporarily disable it and check if that solves the issue.

Users reported that tools such as MyWinLocker can also interfere with the setup process and cause this error to appear, therefore if you have this tool installed, be sure to remove it.

Solution 5 – Check if Windows Install Service is running

In order to install applications on your Windows 10 PC, you need to have Windows Install service running. To enable this service, do the following:

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter services.msc. Press Enter or click OK.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-services-1
  2. When Services window opens, locate Windows Installer, right click it and choose Start.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-services-2

After starting this service, you should be able to install all applications without any problems.

Solution 6 – Uninstall all previous versions of Cisco AnyConnect VPN

According to users, this error can sometimes appear if you’re trying to install a newer version of Cisco AnyConnect VPN software. To fix this problem, you need to completely remove all previous versions of Cisco AnyConnect VPN software. After doing that, you should be able to install this application without any further errors. According to users, the install process starts before the uninstallation process finishes, therefore you need to manually remove Cisco VPN software before you try to install the new version.

Solution 7 – Stop the TSVNCache.exe process

Sometimes the installation process will try to replace certain files even if they are still running, and that will cause The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error to appear. Users reported this error while installing TortoiseSVN. According to them, the installation was trying to replace TSVNCache.exe file with a newer version, but it couldn’t complete the process because the TSVNCache.exe was still running in the background. To fix the issue you need stop this process from Task Manager by doing the following:

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. In the Details tab locate TSVNCache.exe, right click it and choose End Task option.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-task-1
  3. After the process stops, try to perform the installation again.

Keep in mind that this problem can occur with any application and any file related to that application can cause this problem to appear. TSVNCache.exe affects only TortoiseSVN, but if you’re installing a different application you need to find out on your own which file is preventing the installation process.

Solution 8 – Perform a level-three uninstall

This problem can occur when you try to install HP printer software, and to fix it you need to perform the full uninstall of your HP software by following these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + R, enter %temp% and press Enter.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-temp-1
  2. When Temp folder opens, open the 7zXXX.tmp folder. XXX will be replaced by a number that represents the driver version.
  3. Navigate to Util > ccc directory.
  4. Run Uninstall_L3.bat or Uninstall_L3_64.bat.
  5. Click OK and follow the instructions on the screen to complete the uninstall.

After the uninstall is completed, try to install the software again.

Solution 9 – Use MSfixit tool

The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error can prevent you from installing applications on your Windows 10 PC, but you can fix this problem by running MSfixit tool. This tool is designed to automatically fix problems with corrupted registry keys and many other installation problems with just a single click. Simply download and run this tool and it should fix this problem for you.

Solution 10 – Clean your Temp folder

Third-party applications often store files in the Temp folder, but sometimes these files can interfere with the installation process and cause The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error to appear. To fix this problem, you need to clean your Temp folder by following these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter %temp%. Press Enter or click OK.
  2. When Temp folder opens, delete all files from it.
  3. Close the Temp folder.
  4. Press Windows Key + R again and enter TEMP. Click OK or press Enter.
  5. Delete all files from the Temp folder.
  6. After deleting all files from both Temp folders, try to install the application again and check if the problem is resolved.

Solution 11 – Delete all Autodesk folders

This problem can occur if you’re trying to install Autodesk software but you still have Autodesk folders on your PC. Before trying to install Autodesk software, be sure to uninstall all Autodesk programs from your PC. After that navigate to the following folders and delete any Autodesk directories that you can find:

  • C:Program FilesAutodesk
  • C:UsersAll Users
  • C:Users**YOUR USERID**AppDataRoamingAutodesk
  • C:Users**YOUR USERID**AppDataLocalAutodesk

Solution 12 – Disconnect your Google Drive

Google Drive is a great cloud storage service, but sometimes Google Drive can interfere with the installation process of certain applications. To fix this error, users are suggesting to disconnect Google Drive from your PC and check if that fixes the problem. If you don’t want to do that, you can create a new Windows 10 administrator account and try to install the application again.

Solution 13 – Turn off User Account Control

User Account Control is a useful feature designed to alert you whenever you perform an action that requires administrator privileges. This feature can protect you from malicious software, but it can also interfere with the installation process and cause certain errors, therefore you might want to disable it. To disable this feature, do the following:

  1. Press Windows Key + S and enter user accounts. Select User Accounts from the menu.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-uac-1
  2. Select Change User Account Control settings.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-uac-2
  3. Lower the slider all the way down to Never notify.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-uac-3
  4. Click OK to save changes. After that, restart your PC.

You can also disable User Account Control options by following these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + S and enter group policy. Select Edit group policy from the menu.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-group-1
  2. In the left pane navigate to Computer Configuration > Windows Settings > Security Settings > Local Policies > Security Options.
  3. In the right pane locate all User Account Control settings and disable them. To do that, you’ll have to double click each User Account Control setting and select Disabled option if available.
    installer-has-insufficient-privileges-to-access-directory-group-2

After turning this feature off, try to install the same application again.

Fix – “The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory” iTunes

Solution 1 – Unblock the setup file, disable UAC and run the setup as administrator

According to users, you can fix the The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error with iTunes simply by unblocking the setup file. To do that just right click the setup file and choose Properties from the menu. After that click UnblockApply and OK to save changes. Now you need to disable User Account Control and run the setup as administrator. We already explained how to perform this in our previous solutions, so be sure to check them out.

Solution 2 – Change the installation directory for iTunes

According to users, you can fix this problem simply by changing the installation directory. Apparently the problem appears while trying to install iTunes to Program Files (x86) directory, but if you change the installation directory from Program Files (x86) to Program Files the issue should be resolved.

Fix – “The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory” Skype

Solution 1 – Check if any services are using Skype folder

If you’re getting The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error while installing Skype, it might be because certain services or processes are using Skype folder. To see which services are using this directory, simply use procexp tool from Sysinternals, press Ctrl + E and enter Skype and you should see which processes are accessing this folder. After that, simply disable those processes and check if that solves the error.

Solution 2 – Use portable version of Skype

If you can’t install Skype at all due to this error, but you need to urgently use Skype, you can use portable version of Skype as a workaround. You can easily download portable version of Skype from third-party websites, and after downloading it simply double click it in order to run it.

The installer has insufficient privileges to access this directory error can prevent many applications from installing, but as you can see, this problem can be solved simply by taking ownership over the installation directory or by changing your security permissions.

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