How to delete system files in Windows 7


This article explains how to delete a system file in Windows 7 which is using a special account called TrustedInstaller that cannot be deleted with administrator account

How to Delete a System File in Windows 7


System files are important for any Operating system to work properly. If we deleted some of the system files then we need to repair the system using system repair disk in order to work with the system. If you need to delete a system file in Windows 7, even as an administrator account you cannot delete the system file. Windows 7 system files are protected using additional security mechanism to prevent from accidental deletion.The Files are with TrustedInstaller account

System files cannot be directly deleted from Windows 7, but we can delete or modify the system files by taking the ownership of the files and then you can delete the files.

How to take file Ownership in Windows 7


System files will be located in System and System32 folder under Windows folder. You can take the ownership of the system files by using command line utility or by using the wizard.
  • Open the System file location and select the specific file(s) and right click the mouse button and select properties will open New Folder Properties Window

  • Select the Security tab from the New Folder Properties

  • "New Folder Properties" will list the owner and the list of authenticated users for the specific file(s)

  • Click the Advanced button to open Advanced Security Settings for users Window and select Owner tab to change the owner of the file(s).

  • To delete a system file in Windows 7
  • Click the Edit button from the Owner tab of Advanced Security Settings for Users will open Select User or Group window and you can change the owner of the file by selecting the user which you want to take the ownership of the file

  • Once you click the OK button a popup windows will show you a warning about changing the ownership of the file click OK to proceed

  • Now the file ownership is changed and you need to give full permission to the owner of the file.

    How to Grant File Permission in Windows 7


  • Open the same file that you changed the ownership of the file from the location and Right click the file(s) and select Properties will open New Folder Properties Window

  • Select the Security tab from the New Folder Properties

  • Click Edit button will show a popup which will confirm UAC elevation permission click OK button.

  • Select the user which you want to change the permission and in permission section check the Full Control check box under Allow. Remember that you need to select the checkbox of Allow not under Deny and click OK button to change the permission for the selected file(s).

  • Another method to take the ownership of the file is Windows 7 is using takeown command. Open the Windows command prompt and then type takeown command with /f option (using /f option you can specify the filename or directory) from the command prompt like below

    takeown /f c:\mytest.txt

    The above command will take the ownership of the mentioned file. In order to delete the file you need to have full control. Using cacls command we can give the full control to the file.

    calcs c:\mytest.txt /G username:F

    Now you can delete the file, otherwise the file might be in user restart and try it again. If you still can't delete the file then restart the machine login to system with safe mode and then delete the file.


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