How to add “Take Ownership” shortcut to right-click menu on Windows [Guide]

When a file or folder is created or downloaded, Windows automatically assigns ownership access of a file or folder to the user account that creates or downloads it. And the owner has the rights to allow or deny permission to other non-administrator users. From time to time, a Windows user with admin access may need to take ownership of a system file, or a file created by another user. Typically this is a long-winded process that involves jumping through quite a few hoops in the GUI, or for the geekier folks, shooting up a command prompt.

Well, if you ever happen to be in such a situation, here’s a cool registry hack which eliminates the need to go through all of the painful steps, and adds a Take Ownership shortcut to the context menu (right-click menu) in Windows. Here’s how you can do this. This tricks works on both Vist and Windows 7, 32-bit and 64-bit, and may work on Windows 8.

How To Add Take Ownership Shortcut To Right-Click Menu in Windows

  1. Download this file – Take Ownership Win 7
  2. Extract the zip file to your desktop. You should get a folder with two .reg files in it
    Take Ownership FIles
  3. Double click the Add_Take_Ownership.reg file to install the registry entry
  4. Click Yes to the ensuing prompts
    Add Take Ownership
  5. You should get a confirmation dialog telling you that the Take Ownership Shortcut registry entry has been added
    Take Ownership Added
  6. Right-click on the file or folder you wish to take ownership of
  7. You should now see a Take Ownership shortcut in the context menu.
    Take Ownership Shortcut
  8. In case you want to remove this shortcut in the future, simply double click the Remove_Take_Ownership.reg file from the folder you extracted in Step 2, and click through the prompts. Reboot is not required.

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  • Madrao


    Glad you found this helpful

  • Madrao


    You would need to use this when you want to make changes to a system folder, see example in comment below by @patara

  • Madrao


    Thanks…Glad you found this helpful

  • David Roper

    [@patara] Very good comment with a reason to match.

  • patara

    The Take Ownership files I had from Win 7 worked fine on my Win 8 system in January and I would presume it would now be the same with Win 8.1. I’ve been using the hack ever since Win 7 was released. e.g. I wanted to use Windows Mail which MS left on Win 7 and Win 8 but they stopped it working by removing files. By taking ownership of the WM folder I was able to copy over it with my good Vista WM folder and get it working again.

  • oldtimer56


  • janet

    Could you say a bit about what sorts of instances would one want to take ownership? Or is this one of those things where if we don’t know, then we don’t need it….:-)….? Would it not be relevant for a one-person computer?

  • j

    man! come on, I have to give u a hug for this!
    thx a lot!

    best regards!