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Windows 10 is currently the lathử nghiệm version of Microsoft’s extremely popular operating system. Despite bringing many improvements that users love, it comes with a fair amount of errors and bugs that seemingly pop up from nowhere. One of these is getting the message “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file” when attempting to lớn open, modify, or delete an application/tệp tin.

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If you’re having trouble because of this error message, look no further. We’re here to lớn help you identify its causes, and apply a fix to lớn get your system back inlớn the working state.


What causes the “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file” error?

Just lượt thích the majority of Windows 10’s errors, there’s no definitive sầu cause for this one either. However, the user community was able to piece together possible causes that usually lead to the error this article is about. Here’s what we found from various user reports:

You don"t have the right permissions to access the file. Whether intentionally or not, you might not have sầu the required permissions khổng lồ open/modify the application or file.The tệp tin location isn"t accessible or doesn"t exist. It’s possible that the file you’re trying khổng lồ access no longer exists on the computer.The tệp tin has been modified or deleted by malware. When you have sầu malware infections, there’s a possibility that the malicious software will modify or delete your files.An antivi khuẩn application is blocking your access. Antivirut applications are notorious for leading lớn Windows 10 errors. You can find a method lớn ensure your antivirus isn’t causing the error below.The tệp tin is on a non-accessible external location. If you’ve sầu stored the tệp tin on a network or an external hard drive sầu that is no longer properly connected to lớn your PC, you’ll get the “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file” error.

These are only the most comtháng causes known by the community. It’s possible that your error has a different source, however, the steps int he next section should help you resolve sầu the issue.

How to fix “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file”

Now that we’ve sầu identified the majority of possible causes, it’s time khổng lồ fix the error. You can find various methods below that guide you through the steps necessary lớn solve sầu issues with Windows 10’s “cannot access the specified device path or file” error.

Note: Some of these methods require you lớn use an administrator tài khoản on your device. This means that the tài khoản is able lớn persize various tasks that may change system settings, which may be required to lớn restore your system.

Don’t know how to change your tài khoản khổng lồ have administrator permissions? Want khổng lồ create a separate administrator user for purposes lượt thích this? We recommkết thúc watching “Making a user an administrator on a Windows 10 system” by StormWind Studgame ios khổng lồ learn how you can make admin users like a pro.

Now, let’s start troubleshooting the “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file” error!

Method 1: Modify the permission of the file or folder

It’s very much possible that you can’t access or modify a file because you lack the appropriate permissions khổng lồ bởi so.

If you tóm tắt this computer with others, or it’s in a public location, it’s most likely a measure to lớn make sure nobody toàn thân is able khổng lồ harm the device. In this case, tương tác an administrator và kiểm tra with them.

However, if the error occurs on your personal computer, you need lớn fix the permissions yourself. Here’s how to vị just that.

Right-cliông chồng on the problematic tệp tin or folder, then choose Properties.
Using the tab labels at the top of the window, switch khổng lồ the Security tab.
Click on your trương mục listed under Group or user names. This will show what permissions you currently have sầu.Cliông chồng on the Edit button lớn modify permissions.
Make sure lớn remove all the checks from the Deny column. This will automatically lift all restrictions regarding the file.
Clichồng the OK button và kiểm tra if you can open or modify the tệp tin after making these changes.

Method 2: Cheông xã the tệp tin location

If you’re attempting lớn use a shortcut khổng lồ a file, you might be getting the “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file” error because the shortcut currently leads khổng lồ a nonexistent location.

Let’s check the location of the file & verify that it exists doing the following steps.

Right-cliông chồng on the problematic file or folder, then choose Properties.Make sure you’re on the default General tab. Here’s where you can find information about a file, thư mục, or shortcut.Cheông chồng the Location. This will show the path to lớn the tệp tin you’re trying khổng lồ access or modify.
With your mouse cursor, select the location and right-cliông chồng on the text. Choose the Copy option from the context menu.
mở cửa the File Explorer using the icon in your taskbar.

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Click on the header section and insert the location text you copied in Step 4. using the Ctrl + P keyboard shortcut. Press Enter to go khổng lồ the location of the file.
review if you can find the desired file in this location. If you can’t, the most likely thing that has happened is that the file was deleted or moved.

Method 3: Unbloông chồng the file

It’s possible that Windows 10 blocked the tệp tin in an attempt to lớn protect your computer. Even if the file isn’t malicious, the system may run inkhổng lồ false positives và bloông chồng the file you’re trying to lớn access or modify. When this happens, all you have to lớn do is unblochồng it following these simple steps.

Right-click on the problematic tệp tin or thư mục, then choose Properties.Make sure you’re on the default General tab. Here’s where you can find information about a tệp tin, folder or shortcut.Cheông chồng if you see the text “This file came from another computer và might be blocked to lớn help protect this computer.” next to lớn the Security section. If you vì chưng, place a checkmark next lớn Unblock.
Cliông xã OK & attempt khổng lồ access or modify the tệp tin again.

Method 4: Recreate the shortcut khổng lồ the file

When the location of a shortcut path changes, it doesn’t automatically update. This means that you might be trying khổng lồ launch a shortcut that no longer points lớn the right tệp tin location. In this case, all you have sầu lớn vị is re-create the shortcut.

Clichồng on an empty space on the Desktop, then choose NewShortcut.
Hit the Browse button và locate the file you’re trying to lớn access or modify, then click Next.
Enter a desired name for the shortcut. This can be anything within Windows 10’s limits, meaning that you can’t use specific special characters. Cliông chồng Finish.
You should have sầu the working shortcut created on your Desktop.

Method 5: Temporarily disable your third-buổi tiệc nhỏ antivirus

As we mentioned above sầu, it’s possible that a third-tiệc nhỏ antivi khuẩn application causes this error on your system. Windows 10 users report that many different antivirut applications are able lớn cause this error, so don’t rule this option out.

The best and safest way of testing this is by temporarily disabling your antivirus and seeing if the error still occurs.

Note: Make sure you turn on Windows Defender while having your third-buổi tiệc ngọt antivirus disabled. Defender is a native Windows 10 solution for malware protection, capable of giving you the necessary protection when using your PC.

Here’s how you can temporarily disable an antivirut application.

mở cửa the Task Manager using one of the following ways:Right-click on your taskbar and choose Task Manager from the context thực đơn.
Press the Ctrl + Alt + Del keys on your keyboard and wait for the security options screen to lớn show up. Then, select Task Manager.If your Task Manager launched in the compact view, cliông chồng on the More details option seen in the bottom left of the window.
Switch to the Startup tab at the top of the Task Manager window. Here, you can see all of the applications that start along with your computer at launch.
Select your third-buổi tiệc nhỏ antivirut application, then clichồng on the Disable button in the bottom right of the window. The status of the application should change to lớn Disabled.Repeat this for every third-các buổi party antivi khuẩn software installed on your computer, then restart your device.

After completing these steps, your computer will launch without the third-buổi tiệc ngọt antivirut software, giving you the ability khổng lồ check if your issue is resolved.

If you can access, modify, and delete the desired folder/file, it’s most likely that the antivirus ứng dụng you’ve sầu been using caused the error. We recommend looking for a different application or contacting customer tư vấn.

Hopefully, this guide was able to help you get rid of the annoying “Windows cannot access the specified device path or file” error on Windows 10.

If you’re hungry for more information about Microsoft Windows, need help with troubleshooting issues, or want lớn learn more about your operating system, kiểm tra out our other articles here.

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