How to Fix “It looks like you don’t have permission to save changes to this file”?

Editing pictures on our devices is something that we do often. If you have received the “It looks like you don’t have permission to save changes to this file” error message, you have tried to edit a picture on your Windows machine but without success. This can be really annoying as editing pictures is pretty common as well as something that we take for granted. As it turns out, the error message that you are facing is, as obvious from the error message itself, is caused by insufficient permissions.

It looks like you don’t have permission to save changes to this file Error Message

Now, insufficient permissions here do not just refer to one thing that is that you do not have permissions over the file. If that were the case, the workaround would have been rather straightforward and it wouldn’t be much of an issue. Permissions issues like You don’t have permission to save in this location and the one in question are pretty common so there’s nothing to worry about. As it turns out, the issue may even occur when you have sufficient permissions over the file which is when it becomes frustrating. The problem is often related to the fact that when you move the image that you are trying to edit from a different drive or even at times, move from your OneDrive storage to your computer.

As it turns out, when you move an image from a different drive to your system or OneDrive as mentioned above, the picture is often blocked and therefore no changes can be made. In such a scenario, you will have to simply unblock the image via the Properties window before continuing with your editing activity. With that said, there are reasons why the issue may occur as well and without further ado, let us dive right into the different workarounds that you can implement to get rid of the error message in question so that you can edit your pictures without any issues.

Run Photo Editor as an Administrator

If you are using a third-party photo editor when encountering the error message in question, then the first thing that you should do is try to open up the photo editor as an admin. In case you are using the default Windows Photo Editor to edit your images, then this method does not apply to you and you should move on to the next one.

As it turns out, the photo editor application that you are using can sometimes not have sufficient permissions over the image which is why you are unable to save the picture after editing it. Therefore, a simple solution here would be to try to run the application as an administrator so that it has more than enough permissions to edit the file in question. To do this, follow the instructions given down below:

  1. First of all, navigate to where your Photo Editor is located. If you have a shortcut of the application on your Desktop, then that works as well and you can use that too.
  2. Right-click on the application and from the drop-down menu that appears, choose the Run as an administrator.
    Running the Application as an Administrator
  3. Click Yes on the UAC dialog box that appears and then try to save the image once you are done editing it.
  4. See if the error message still appears.

Save Picture in a Different Folder

As it turns out, another way that you can resolve the issue is by saving the picture that you are editing in a different folder. This means try to save the picture in a different directory than where the image actually exists. For example, if the picture is present on your Desktop, try saving the image somewhere except on your Desktop and see if that works out. This has been reported by other users who were facing a similar issue and this helped them resolve the problem since they were able to save the image in a different folder than where the image was located. Therefore, go ahead and try it too to see if it works for you.

Saving the Picture

Change Properties of the Picture

One of the main reasons you might encounter the error message in question here is due to the Properties of the file. This happens when you move your image from a different drive to your system or in some cases, move it from your OneDrive to your computer. Knowing how to use OneDrive can be really beneficial but it can cause some issues sometimes like this one. In such a case, what happens is that the file is blocked by your operating system which is why any changes can’t be made to the picture.

If this case is applicable, you will simply have to unblock the picture via its Properties window and you should be able to edit and save it without any issues. To do this, follow the instructions given down below:

  1. First of all, navigate to where your picture is located.
  2. Then, once there, right-click on the picture, and from the drop-down menu, choose the Properties option.
    Opening up the Properties Window
  3. Then, under the General tab, you should see a “This file came from another computer and might be blocked to help protect this computer” message at the bottom. Next to it, make sure the Unblock checkbox is not ticked.
    Changing Picture Properties
  4. In addition, make sure that the Read-only checkbox is not ticked as well. After that, click Apply and then hit OK.
  5. Once you have done that, go ahead and try to save the picture again after an edit to see if the problem persists.

Repair and Reset Windows Photo App

Finally, if the above-mentioned solutions do not work out for you and you are using the Windows Photo application on your computer to edit the image, then it is most likely due to the Photos app and you will have to repair it. This is fairly simple to do and it will look for any issues with the app and try to fix them. In case repairing the Photos app doesn’t fix the issue, you can then try to Reset the application which will essentially reinstall the application on your system. Follow the instructions given down below:

  1. First of all, open up the Windows Settings app by pressing Windows key + I.
  2. Then, on the Settings window, make your way to Apps.
    Windows Settings
  3. On the Apps and features screen, search for the Photos app via the search bar provided.
    Searching for Microsoft Photos App
  4. Once it appears, highlight it and then click on the Advanced options option.
    Opening the Advanced Options Menu
  5. On the new screen, scroll down until you see the Repair and Reset options.
    Microsoft Photos Advanced Options
  6. Give them a go one by one to see if that resolves the issue.

Muhammad Zubyan

Muhammad Zubyan is a certified Google IT Support Professional with over 7 years of extensive experience. He has worked on more than 1500 computers, gaining valuable insights that enable him to detect and troubleshoot any complicated root cause of Windows-related issues and errors. In addition to managing Appuals as a Senior Editor, he is currently developing his own Game Optimization program that caters to both gamers and casual users alike.
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How to Fix “It looks like you don’t have permission to save changes to this file”?

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