NTFS Inheritance Rule Change

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Up until recently, NTFS permissions have followed these inheritance rules:

  • If a file or folder is copied to some other location, it will inherit the new location's NTFS permissions.
  • If a file or folder is moved to some other location on a different disk drive, it will inherit the new location's NTFS permissions.
  • If a file or folder is moved to some other location on the same disk drive, it will retain the original location's NTFS permissions.

One of the NTFS inheritance rules changed in Windows 2008, R2, Windows Vista, and Windows 7. Now if you move a file or folder, it will inherit the new location's NTFS permissions, even if the new location is on the same disk drive. This is a radical shift that you need to taken into account when you're moving files.

You can find a reference to this change in the Notes section in the Microsoft article "Inherited permissions are not automatically updated when you move folders".

Thanks to Murat Yildirimoglu, an MCSE and MCT in Istanbul, Turkey, for the article.