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Q: Windows 2000 reinstalled now unable to use previous user profile path ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Windows 2000 reinstalled now unable to use previous user profile path
Category: Computers > Operating Systems
Asked by: goenergy-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 09 Sep 2002 11:11 PDT
Expires: 09 Oct 2002 11:11 PDT
Question ID: 63110
I reinstalled Windows 2000 Professional over my original installation.
All existing files on the hard drive were left intact. I normally
login as Administrator since I am the only one to use this machine.
After the reinstall, however, the install process created a new
administrator called Administrator-(machine_name). Now when I login as
Administrator I'm assigned to the new path or C:\Documents and
Settings\administrator.machine_name and NOT C:\Documents and
Settings\administrator as I was before. As a result I no longer have
access to my original installation profile. Question: how can I change
the login path for Administrator so that it uses C:\Documents and
Settings\administrator instead of C:\Documents and
Subject: Re: Windows 2000 reinstalled now unable to use previous user profile path
Answered By: alienintelligence-ga on 09 Sep 2002 20:33 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi goenergy...

I had this same problem on some
installs I did in the past. Laziness
kept me from finding a solution. 
Your question prodded me into action 
to find an answer.

Believe it or not... it came from
Microsoft. And, believe it or not,
it's rather simple.

Except for the time expense at having
to move any possible files... it
really only requires a simple edit
to the registry.

@-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- 

******** OVERALL WARNING ******** 
"IMPORTANT: This article contains information about modifying the
registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure to back it up
and make sure that you understand how to restore the registry if a
problem occurs. For information about how to back up, restore, and
edit the registry, click the following article number to view the
article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
     Q256986 Description of the Microsoft Windows Registry "
[;en-us;Q256986 ]

"WARNING: If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause
serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating
system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems
that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry
Editor at your own risk."

@-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- @-}-- 

"HOW TO: Restore a User Profile in Windows 2000"
[;EN-US;q314045& ]
"The information in this article applies to:
Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server"

-=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- 

This step-by-step article describes how to restore
a user profile as well as the following user profile
-Desktop settings

"By default, when you first log on to a Windows 2000-based
computer, Windows creates a user profile folder in the
%SystemDrive%\Documents and Settings folder, and you are
given Full Control permission. If you lose the Full
Control permission for this folder, Windows creates a new
user profile folder the next time that you log on and you
can no longer access the original user profile folder
unless you have local administrative authority on the

"-If you lose access to your profile folder, Windows
creates a new profile folder for you, and places it in the
Documents and Settings folder by default. Windows attempts
to use your user name as the name of the new profile
folder. However, if the old profile folder still exists,
Windows modifies the name of the new folder to avoid
duplicating the name of the original profile folder. In
this scenario, you may see multiple profile folders for
your user profile. The following information describes the
default naming scheme that Windows 2000 uses for user
-If the username folder does not already exist, the new
profile folder is named:

-If the username folder already exists, the new profile
folder is named:
username. computername

-If the username. computername folder already exists, the
new profile folder is named:
username. computername.000

-If the username. computername.000 folder already exists,
Windows uses the next available increment of the username.
computername.000 naming scheme.

For example:
username. computername.001"

-=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- 

To restore a user profile, the Documents and Settings\ username
profile folder must still exist, and you must have the Full
Control permission for this folder. If you do not have the correct
permission for your user profile folder, you (or someone else)
must log on to the computer as an administrator and restore the
required level of permission to your user profile."

-=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- 

"Copy Documents from the Current Profile Folder to the Appropriate
User Profile Folder

"If you have logged on to Windows since you lost access permission
to your original profile folder, there are at least two user
profile folders that have your user name. To make these files
accessible from the user profile that you are restoring:

1.Log on to the computer as an administrator.

2.Copy all of the documents from your current My Documents folder
to the My Documents folder of the profile that you are restoring.

NOTE: Step 2 is not required if you have moved your My Documents
folder to a location outside the Documents and Settings folder;
however, after you restore your user profile, you may need to
re-specify the target folder location of the My Documents folder.

3.To retain the Internet favorites links, copy all of the Internet
shortcut files from your current Favorites folder to the
Favorites folder of the user profile that you are restoring.

"NOTE: Do not copy Desktop.ini file."

-=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- 

"Grant Full Control Permission for the User Profile Folder
Right-click your old user profile folder, and then click
Properties. By default, this folder is %SystemDrive%\Documents and
Settings\ username.

"On the Security tab, click your user profile in the Name list, and
then click to select Allow for the Full Control permission.

"NOTE: If your user profile is not displayed in the Name list, add
your profile: Click Add, click your user name in the list, and
then click OK.

"Click OK to close the dialog box."

-=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- 

And here is the key part (fyi, I got it to work just doing
this part, but I didn't have any files to move, so...
mileage may vary. ;o} )

-=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- -=+=- 

"Edit the User Profile Registry Key

"Edit the registry so that the profile image path points to the
user profile folder that you worked with in the "Grant Full
Control Permission for the User Profile Folder" section in this

1.Log on to the computer with the user profile that you want to

2.Click Start, and then click Run.

3.Type regedit, and then click OK.

4.In Registry Editor, navigate to the following registry key:

5.Locate your user profile folder."

"NOTE: When you open the ProfileList folder, you see several
folders, each of which belongs to a different user. These folders
are named according to the user security IDs (SIDs) and not
according to the user names."

"To locate your user profile folder, use one of the following
For each folder, click the folder, and then look for the
ProfileImagePath value that contains the path to your user profile
(such as %SystemDrive%\Documents and Settings\ username)."

"In Registry Editor, press CTRL+F to start the Find tool. Type your
user name in the Find what box, click to select the Data check box
under Look at, and then click Find."

6.After you locate the subkey folder for your user profile,
double-click the ProfileImagePath value.

7.In the Value data box, change the path so that it points to the
profile folder that you are restoring, and then and click OK.

8.Quit Registry Editor.
The next time that you log on to the computer, Windows will use
your restored user profile."

-search techniques-
I actually did a bunch of fruitless searches at
first, ones I thought that were really good (must have
been what happened when I tried to solve this over
a year ago.) My final search that yielded the answer: "Documents and Settings" "Windows 2000"
[ ://

Hope it goes as smoothly for you, as it went for me.

goenergy-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Right on target. Exactly what I was looking for.

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