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How to Understand Those Confusing Windows 7 File/Share Permissions

Have you ever tried to figure out all of the permissions in Windows? There’s share permissions, NTFS permissions, access control lists, and more. Here’s how they all work together.

The Windows Operating systems use SIDs to represent all security principals. SIDs are just variable length strings of alphanumeric characters that represent machines, users and groups. SIDs are added to ACLs(Access Control Lists) every time you grant a user or group permission to a file or folder. Behind the scene SIDs are stored the same way all other data object are, in binary. However when you see a SID in Windows it will be displayed using a more readable syntax. It is not often that you will see any form of SID in Windows, the most common scenario is when you grant someone permission to a resource, then their user account is deleted, it will then show up as a SID in the ACL. So lets take a look at the typical format in which you will see SIDs in Windows.

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