No, you don't start out with limited permissions. If you can access phpmyadmin at all, things should be working all the way.
You seen to know what you're doing, so I'd assume you're pretty darn sure what your telling phpmyadmin to do should work. If you're not sure, post one of your statements here and I'm sure someone will be able to help out.
I'd reccomend contacting support (this is just a customer to customer forum) and have them look into the issue.
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