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Moving "Documents and Settings" on an already installed system (XP Pro)

By fgaliegue ยท 4 replies
Feb 15, 2006
  1. Hello everyone,

    Do you know whether $subject is possible at all, and if yes, how I can manage to do it?

    In this situation, it's on an already partitioned laptop, with a C: drive that is too small but a gigantic D: drive. I'd like to move Documents and Settings on D:, and that the modification be, of course, persistent upon reboots :p
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList

    This key has the locations of all existing user profiles (user SIDs as subkeys) and the default location for new profiles (the ProfilesDirectory value). Not sure how to make Windows create new profiles in some other location.

    After changing the registry, copy the D&S folder and reboot. You may have to adjust permissions and ownership of the moved data to make stuff work correctly.
  3. fgaliegue

    fgaliegue TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 51

    Actually it looks much more complicated than just copy...

    In order for the user account not to be out of sync, I logged in with another user with administration rights (member of the local 'Administrators' group).

    No go to start with, I just couldn't copy the directory: access denied on ntuser.dat, ntuser.ini and some others...

    So, I forced the rights so that the new user had all rights on it - no go either! No go because when I selected to replace the rights of all child objects with the new rights (well, ACL), this sucker wouldn't even allow me. Gee!

    I'll let you know the outcome...
  4. JayBot

    JayBot TS Rookie Posts: 17

    You couldn't copy it because you had previously logged in as the profile you wanted to copy so files were in use. Shut down/Restart and log in as another user with Admin Rights then copy/regedit.
  5. fgaliegue

    fgaliegue TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 51

    Yup, I figured this out shortly after that.

    You have to wonder anyway how on earth files of a now disconnected user can still be in use!

    Problem now solved, regedit is done. I had one more problem anyway, but this one was easy... OutLook still had its data file in the old directory, so I had to shut it down, login again as the old user, move the PST file again, relog, relaunch, done. Phew.
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