Win7 writing to root of drives

Networking/Security Forums -> Windows

Author: graycatLocation: London, UK PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 2:51 pm    Post subject: Win7 writing to root of drives
Does anyone know why you need to be an admin account to write files to the root of a drive?

It looks like MS have done this by design but I can't think of a good reason. For example: putting files onto a USB pen drive - you need to be an admin to put them on the root but not into a sub-folder.

Weird IMO.

Author: capiLocation: Portugal PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 11:08 pm    Post subject:
Really? Wow, I'm sure out of touch with all these new Windows versions nowadays.

I would say it's definitely a good idea to protect the root of internal drives, e.g. C:\ -- however that can easily be achieved with default NTFS permissions. As for removable drives and the protection apparently being hardcoded... that sounds weird to me too.

Author: georgec PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:54 am    Post subject:
There was a limitation of the number of files and folders you can have in the root previous to NTFS, however, I am not sure with NTFS but remember that from a security point of view it helps to limit the root to admin!

Author: AdamVLocation: Leeds, UK PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2011 4:00 am    Post subject:
I've not had that problem as far as I can recall, on flash drives, external hard drives etc.
I just went and created a folder called "test" in c:\ without any issue, but I can't create a file c:\test.txt (saving from notepad).
(I am of course running as a non-admin user, with UAC fully loaded too)

So it looks like on my system drive I can create a folder but not files in the root.
On external ones it could be that I am not using a secure file system, or that my usual organised brain almost always creates folders anyway before putting files on any media.

What file system is the drive in question? (in most cases I would expect USB thumb drives to be FAT or FAT32, so not using NTFS permissions for example).

Why would you want to save files in the root when you can just as easily save the somewhere else? Or create a folder to put them in (I'm guessing you might be scripting something here)?

Author: graycatLocation: London, UK PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 10:52 am    Post subject:
Cheers for testing this out, guys.

The ext drives can be NTFS or FAT32 and I haven't seen it make a difference.

AdamV - I'm glad to see you're getting the same results as I. Personally I agree that files shouldn't be written directly to the root of a drive but placed in a logical file structure ..... but that doesn't always happen IRL.

It's more a curiosity than an issue. Smile

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