Cannot change the properties of 'read only' files in xp

Recently, I was not able to change the properties of 'read only' to my files. I click on 'Properties', uncheck the 'read only', press on apply, click OK. When I re - check the records they come up to 'read only' again. I can't find a way around it. It has stopped me to back up files, since I get the message that the files are 'read only' and cannot be changed.
All solutions?
Thank you

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The read-only attribute has never been applicable to files under XP. You can try to take ownership of files/folders instead.

Appropriating a file or a folder under Windows XP [Q308421] - http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=308421

How can I get the Security tab in the folder properties? - http://www.dougknox.com/xp/tips/xp_security_tab.htm MS - MVP - Elephant Boy computers - don't panic!

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