Full Fix: OneDrive Access Denied error

By: Milan Stanojevic
6 minute read

Many users reported OneDrive Access denied error message on their PC. This message can be problematic since it will prevent you from accessing OneDrive files, but if you want to fix this issue, we advise you to try some of our solutions below.

OneDrive Access denied error message, how to fix it?


  1. Check your antivirus
  2. Clear browser cache
  3. Check the permissions
  4. Take ownership of the problematic file
  5. Assign Full control to your user account
  6. Make sure that the file isn’t encrypted
  7. Create a new administrator account

Solution 1 – Check your antivirus

onedrive access denied error

In some instances, OneDrive Access denied error message can appear due to your antivirus. Some third-party antivirus can sometimes block access to certain directories in order to protect your PC. However, this feature can cause problems with OneDrive, so it’s advised that you disable it.

If that doesn’t work, you might want to try disabling other antivirus features. Alternatively, you might want to disable your antivirus completely. In the worst case scenario, you might have to remove your antivirus.

If removing the antivirus solves the issue, this might be a perfect time to consider switching to a different antivirus solution. There are many great antivirus tools on the market, but if you want an antivirus that won’t interfere with your system, we suggest that you try out Bitdefender.


Solution 2 – Clear browser cache

Sometimes OneDrive Access denied message can appear due to your browser cache. Your cache files can get corrupted, and that can cause this error message to appear. Since there’s no way to repair damaged cache files, the best method to fix this issue is to clear your cache.

This is a simple procedure, but it differs slightly from browser to browser. For this solution we’re going to show you how to clear cache in Google Chrome, but you should know that the process is similar for other browsers. To clear the cache, do the following:

  1. Click the Menu icon in the top-right corner and select Settings from the menu.
    onedrive access denied error
  2. Settings tab will appear. Scroll all the way down and click Advanced.
    onedrive access denied error
  3. Now click the Clear browsing data.
    onedrive access denied error
  4. Set Time range to All time. Now click the Clear data button.
    onedrive access denied error

After you clear the cache, the issue should be completely resolved.


Solution 3 – Check the permissions

If certain users are getting OneDrive Access denied error, the problem might be the lack of permissions. To fix this issue, it’s advised that you check if your files and folders are shared properly with users.

Be sure to check the list of users that you share your files with, and make sure that everything is in order. In addition, you might want to change your sharing settings and make your files public. This isn’t the best method, especially if you’re using OneDrive to store sensitive documents, but it’s a solid troubleshooting method to check if the security permissions are the problem.


Solution 4 – Take ownership of the problematic file

If you’re getting OneDrive Access denied error message on your PC while trying to access certain files, you might not have the necessary permissions to do so. To fix this problem, you might have to take ownership of the problematic file or directory.

This is relatively simple to do, and you can do it by following these steps:

  1. Locate the directory that you can’t access, right click it and choose Properties from the menu.
    onedrive access denied error
  2. Go to Security tab and click the Advanced button.
    onedrive access denied error
  3. In the Owner section on the top, click Change.
    onedrive access denied error
  4. Enter your username and click Check Names button. If everything is in order, click OK to save changes.
    onedrive access denied error
  5. Now check Replace owner on subcointainers and objects and click Apply and OK to save changes.
    onedrive access denied error

After making these changes, you’ll have full ownership over the problematic directory and the Access denied message will be gone.

If this process seems a bit tedious to you, you can also change ownership using the command line. This method is a bit more advanced, but it only requires a single line of code, so it’s a lot faster. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + X to open Win + X menu and choose Command Prompt (Admin) or Powershell (Admin).
    onedrive access denied error
  2. Now enter the following commands:
  • takeown /f “C:\WindowsReport” /r /d y
  • icacls “C:\WindowsReport” /grant %username% :F /t /q

Of course, be sure to enter the correct location of the directory you want to access. Although this method is a lot faster, it requires you to enter the exact location of the directory you’re trying to access, so be sure to double-check everything before running this command.


Solution 5 – Assign Full control to your user account

If you keep getting OneDrive Access denied error message on your PC, the problem might be the lack of Full control privileges. In order to protect your files from unauthorized access, you can assign different privileges to different users.

This means that sometimes you might not have access to the certain directories. However, you can easily fix that by making the following changes:

  1. Locate the directory you’re trying to access, right-click it and choose Properties from the menu.
  2. Navigate to the Security tab and click Edit.
    onedrive access denied error
  3. Now click the Add button.
    onedrive access denied error
  4. Enter the name of the user account that you want to use to access this directory, click Check Names and OK.
  5. Select the desired account, and make sure that you check Full control in Allow column. Now click Apply and OK to save changes.
    onedrive access denied error

After doing that, you should have full control over the selected directory and everything will start working again.


Solution 6 – Make sure that the file isn’t encrypted

In some rare instances, OneDrive Access denied error message can appear due to file encryption. Encrypting your files is a great way to protect your privacy, but sometimes you won’t be able to access certain files if they are encrypted.

To fix this problem, you need to first decrypt the files and then try to access them.


Solution 7 – Create a new administrator account

In some cases, you might encounter this problem if you aren’t using an administrator account. To fix this issue, you need to create a new administrator account by following these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app. You can do that quickly by using Windows Key + I shortcut. When the Settings app opens, go to the Accounts section.
    onedrive access denied error
  2. Select Family & other people from the left pane. Click on Add someone else to this PC.
    onedrive access denied error
  3. Choose I don’t have this person’s sign-in information.
    onedrive access denied error
  4. Now click on Add a user without a Microsoft account.
    onedrive access denied error
  5. Enter the username for the new account and click Next.
    onedrive access denied error

After creating a new user account, you need to change it from regular to the Administrator account. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. In Settings app go to Accounts > Family & other people.
  2. Locate the account that you want to promote to Administrator, select it and click Change account type.
    onedrive access denied error
  3. Set Account type to Administrator and click OK.
    onedrive access denied error

After doing that, switch to the new administrator account and try to access this directory again.

OneDrive Access denied error message can prevent you from accessing your files, and the issue is usually caused by lack of privileges, but you should be able to fix that problem using one of our solutions.

READ ALSO:

Next up

These features are out for good with Windows 10 version 1809

iamsovy@gmail.com' By: Sovan Mandal
2 minute read

Microsoft is all set to launch its next big update, Windows 10 version 1809 in October. While that should be a nice piece of news […]

Continue Reading

Windows 10 18H2 builds no longer receive new features

By: Matthew Adams
3 minute read

The Windows 10 October 2018 Update (otherwise 18H2) rollout might now be two to three weeks away. For the last few months, new build previews […]

Continue Reading

Windows 7 KB4457139 makes it easier to upgrade to Windows 10

By: Madeleine Dean
2 minute read

Microsoft released a new Windows 7 update to the general public. Update KB4457139 is actually a preview of the upcoming monthly rollup update and allows users […]

Continue Reading

Discussions