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User profile paths not generalized

Printed From: ForensiT
Category: ForensiT Support
Forum Name: Desktop Management
Forum Discription: User Profile Manager questions, suggestions, comments and bug reports
Printed Date: 23 Sep 2020 at 10:55pm

Topic: User profile paths not generalized
Posted By: dem3tre
Subject: User profile paths not generalized
Date Posted: 17 Dec 2010 at 9:42am
When using User Profile Manager for Windows 7 (2.0.1026) to create a new default user hardcoded paths remain that point to the source profile and exist throughout the registry (HKCU/HKLM).
To see an example of this create a new default profile then create a new user with it and look at the following key:
HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Folders
While this location is depreciated its still widely used by many programs to find the various folders and all of them point back to the original user profile. Other keys also exist as do keys that probably shouldn't exist in the default profile (various keys that cache user activity history for example).

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 18 Dec 2010 at 5:53am

Many thanks for your feedback. There are a number of points to make, I think.

Firstly, the "Copy To/Set As Default Profile" functionality in User Profile Manager was originally added to User Profile Manager just in order to replicate the "Copy To" functionality available using the “User Profiles" dialog box on Windows XP. (We had to replicate this functionality because User Profile Manager replaces the “User Profiles" dialog box.) This it does. The "Copy To" functionality in XP does not fix all the paths in the registry and neither does User Profile Manager. (May be this is one of the reasons why Microsoft dropped the "Copy To" functionality in Windows 7.)

You say that the paths in registry that point to the source profile exist throughout the registry. This is true, but the vast majority of these paths relate to user specific data like Most Recently Used file lists. If you are creating a new default profile, it is best practice to strip the source profile of as much of this data as possible – or not create it in the first place. The default value for the HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Folders registry key is !Do not use this registry key Smile

Importantly, what’s the problem? Does having these paths in the registry actually cause an issue? The feedback we have had indicates that they don’t. May be that’s not the case in your environment; if so, let us know what you are seeing.

Finally, if the only thing you are using User Profile Manager for is setting a default profile, you should not be using User Profile Manager. Please use our free - DefProf utility instead. More on that - here .

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 09 Jan 2011 at 10:47am
The Shell Folders registry key is now handled correctly with - Version 1.2 .

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