Share the root of the bootup drive in Windows 7

Since I moved up to Windows 7 one thing has bothered me.  It doesn't allow you to share the root of the bootup drive.  Now, I understand why - there are security issues by opening up the drive.  However my network has 4 computers and I work on 2 of them, my daughter uses one and one is a server that nobody works on.  I have been sharing the root of the boot drives on my network for the past 10 years and never had an issue with it.

Today I was doing some housekeeping on my development machine and I decided to do a search on it and see if could find some solutions.  And I found one that is very, very simple!  Note that in the following steps, I use the double quote to show what buttons etc. to select.  You should not type in the double quotes anywhere, while doing this!

  1. From the Windows start menu, go to "Computer"
  2. Right click on the boot drive and select "Properties"
  3. Go to the "Security" tab and click on the "Edit" button below the "Group or user names" listbox.
  4. Click on the "Add" button on teh "Permissions window"
  5. In the "Enter the objec names to select" entry field, enter:  Everyone and then click on the "Check Names" button on the right.  If the entry in the field looks like a link, then the user name is correct.
  6. Click the OK button
  7. In the Permisson window, set the Allow or Deny checkboxes as needed.  Depending on what you want you may check "Read" and "List folder contents" only or if you are the only one accessing this, you may want to use "Full control"
  8. Click the OK button to accept the changes. 
  9. You will now get a warning message saying "You are about to change the permission settings on the root directory of the startup disk, which can result in unexpected access problems and reduce security.  Do you want to continue?" 
  10. If you are sure this is what you want, click the "Yes" button.

The Windows Security system will now go through your folders and files and set the permission attributes according to what you set them.  You will get errors on some files and folders, such as the C:\hyperfil.sys, C:\pagefil.sys, "Program FIles", "Program Files (x86)" and "Windows"  Just click the "Continue" button to continue with the operation.  Depending on the files you have etc. this may take several seconds or even minutes if you have a lot of stuff on your drive.  Once you have done this, you can now go and share the drive if you want. 

  1. Right click on the drive and select "Properties"
  2. Select the "Sharing" tab and click on the "Advanced Sharing..." button
  3. Check the "Share this folder" on the "Advanced Sharing" window
  4. Select a name for the drive, I generally use "C_Drive"
  5. Click the "Permissions" button and here you can set the access of "Everyone" to "Full Control", "Change" or "Read"  If you just want to be able to access files on the drive, not edit them, just leave it set to "Read"  If you anticipate to work on files on this drive, set it to "Full Control"
  6. Click the "OK" buttons to leave the windows and your C: drive is now shared!

That's it - you're done!  Hope this helps some people:)

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