How to fix the “You’ll need to provide administrator permission to copy to this folder” error

Here’s a good one:

Everytime you try to copy a file to your USB stick you get this error:

You'll need to provide administrator permission to copy to this folder

You'll need to provide administrator permission to copy to this folder

The ironic thing is that you are the administrator of your computer yet Windows keeps pestering you about getting permission from the administrator to complete the action.

Furthermore, it’s farcical, almost absurd, that Windows provides three equally useless buttons.

I don’t want to Cancel the action nor do I want to Skip the file I’m trying to copy but if I click Continue I get a new error:

You need permission to perform this action

If I click Try Again that immutable error remains and haunts me like a specter.

There’s nothing I can do to get around this access denied message.

You need permission to perform this action

I mean, as the Administrator, who exactly do I need permission from to access this folder?

  • Is there a hidden super Administrator account out there?
  • Microsoft? Do I need to call Microsoft for permission?
  • Do I need to ask God for access?
  • What gives?

Among the multifaceted idiosyncrasies of Windows this has got to be the most annoying.

You could try disabling User Account Control (UAC) but that has it’s own issues.  Disabling UAC has other ramifications which will weaken the security profile of the OS and prevent some ModernUI (Metro) apps from running.  In addition, it may not even fix the problem.

Alternatively, you could try using Unlocker or even manually take ownership of the destination folder but these actions might be equally futile.

The first thing I would do is disable your Antivirus Software.

Some programs such as AVG Free and Quick Heal have peculiar features which have good intentions but can get in the way.  I know Avast calls its version of data protection File System Shield.  Different vendors have different names for it but the easiest thing is to:

  1. Disable AV protection
  2. Copy your files
  3. Enable AV protection again

In Quick Heal you can disable Data Theft Protection under the External Drives & Devices section.

Quick Heal Data Theft Protection

You’re AV software should have something comparable.

If that doesn’t do the trick please let me know in the comments because I’ve discovered that AV software is the culprit 90% of the time.


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Posted in Windows, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 Tagged with:
  • jc0966

    Didn’t do the trick

  • go to Volumes

    open CMD with admin permission

    Run command: icacls * /T /Q /C /RESET


  • shreya

    thank you sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much

  • shreya

    u r awesome my friend

  • Rakesh Jani

    thnxx for compliment it’s workk……..

  • Hrushikesh Nial

    Specially Thanks to you,
    You r a great guy.. Thank u verry much

  • Soumabh Chakraborty

    Thanks bro …Great idea …….and it worked. Thanks a lot.

  • Arnab Kumar Chatterjee

    heard many solutions. i rather have a simple one. i had the same prob as i couldnt copy from one drive to other. i backedd up the data in the destintaion drive and simply formatted it. now its working fine!

  • bob

    Thanks for correctly describing the level of frustration this strange windows behavior would cause… That exactly what I felt! 🙂

    I could not disable the anti-virous. IT of my company revoke this access from us even though we are in Administrators group of our systems.

  • Padraigin Eagle

    Well done, Vonnie, point 1 followed, disabled Panda anti-virus, Firefox installed just fine, thank you.

  • fire115

    moron article

  • Namu N

    Thank u It worked…..good article!!!


    can i uninnstal quick heal when im done