Windows 7 - File missing from my external hard disk

December 2016


I'm using a 1TB external HD to transfer files from my old XP PC to my new laptop running Windows 7. It seems that my photos anfd music files are missing but my movies are there however.

The hard drive still shows that its almost full so I think the files must be there somewhere.


This is probably just a problem with file access permissions.

After some research, it turned out the tool "cacls" that allows one to display or change ACLs (access control lists) can help to reset ACLs.

In Windows 7 it is called "icalcs". To reset files permissions:
  • Run "cmd" as Administrator - ( type it in the start cmd)
  • Go to the drive or folder in question, for example for the E drive:
  • CD /D E:
  • To reset all the files permissions, type: (the spaces are important)
  • icacls * /T /Q /C /RESET
  • And that's it!

Thanks to xpcman for this tip.

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