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lost access to files and desktop

By dahddjo ·
Tags: Security, Windows
This morning after booting Windows 10, I do not see any files on my local drive nor file icons on my desktop. Everything is on OneDrive. I copied files down from OneDrive to local and it appeared to work. But when I rebooted, they are gone again. It is as if I am not Administrator, but I am. All of the apps are there, but there are back to factory settings, as are Settings. Again, it allows me to update settings, but all is lost upon reboot. Can anyone help? This is very odd. All was fine yesterday.
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All Answers

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My first thought.....

by birdmantd Moderator In reply to lost access to files and ...

Your hard disk may have failed. Did you have any odd issues before today ? You should attempt a diagnostic on the hard drive while in safe mode. There should be additional advice from others forthcoming.

It would help if you could share more details about the computer you are using (specifications). Your post doesn't offer any information about the computer or hardware that you are using.

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by dahddjo In reply to lost access to files and ...

Here are the specs:
OS Version: Microsoft Windows 10 Home, 64 bit, Build 19041, Installed 20201022223431.000000-480
Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-8250U CPU @ 1.60GHz, Intel64 Family 6 Model 142 Stepping 10, CPU Count: 8
Total Physical RAM: 12 GB
Graphics Card: Intel(R) UHD Graphics 620, 1024 MB
Hard Drives: C: **4 GB (625 GB Free); 15 GB (1 GB Free);
Motherboard: HP 84BE, ver 02.15, s/n PHJUV038JB944D
System: Insyde, ver HPQOEM - 0, s/n 5CD8360H70
Antivirus: Windows Defender, Disabled

I can run diagnostics on the hard drive. But the computer boots just fine, and I can run apps on it etc. Just nothing saves. It is like Groundhog Day - every boot goes back to where it was!

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We will need to wait for other opinions.......

by birdmantd Moderator In reply to Specs

.....but I still suspect a failed/failing HD is causing the problem. I am hoping some other members may be able to offer more information about your problem.

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Re: lost access to files and desktop

by Kees_B Moderator In reply to lost access to files and ...

Looks like a corrupted Windows account. Then Windows makes a temporary new one you login, and deletes that when you logout.

The solution is to make a new Windows account and transfer your files to it. You might have to redo your settings.
This is nearly trivial for a local account, but I'm afraid it's more work when you login into Windows with a Microsoft account. Start with a new local account and link that to your Microsoft account later.

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Thank you

by dahddjo In reply to Re: lost access to files ...

I thought it looked like a Windows account problem also. But it had my name as the Account and Administrator. Very odd. I rebooted numerous times and same behavior. Then, based on other advice, I booted into Safe Mode to run diagnostics. Rebooted again, and presto, problem went away! Everything was back to normal. I will save your response, however, in case it happens again. This felt like a combination of Twilight Zone and Groundhog Day :-)

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