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Internet Explorer roaming Favorites revert to C: drive

donander
donander asked
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I previously received a solution for configuring IE roaming Favorites from EE (see my question "How to support Internet Explorer roaming favorites") I make the favorites roam by re-pointing the Favorites location specified in the Registry from the C: drive to a network drive which is automatically mapped by our logon script to each user's home directory on our NT4 server. The home directory is \\server\username so each user who logs on has access to their own home directory and thus there own IE Favorites. The problem that has come up is that this Registry setting sometimes reverts to the default location on the C: drive. The exact location depends on the OS. In Win9x it is C:\windows\favorites. I think this may happen when a user either bypasses the network logon or there is some problem that keeps the home directory from being mapped. If there is no home directory mapped, and IE can't see that location, I believe IE reverts to its default location. One workaround would be to export the registry keys or branches that have the correct path and have them load at startup but this seems kludgey to me. Does anyone have a more elegant but simple solution?

Thanks,
donander
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Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
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Top Expert 2004

Commented:
It'll help you get your answer more quickly, if you post the link to your other question cited above; too many thousands out there to search through.  Also which version of IE are we dealing with here?

Asta
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
OOps, bad eyes today, be right back.
Asta
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
Could part of the problem be that they may have renamed a favorite which is a known problem here?  Also some related known issues in unattended installations and a few others come to mind, so will post the global link, in case this helps you.  If not, hopefully others will step in to help, I've got to get to work.

http://search.support.microsoft.com/search/default.aspx?Catalog=LCID%3D1033%26CDID%3DEN-US-KB%26PRODLISTSRC%3DON&Product=ie600&Query=roaming%2520favorites&Queryc=roaming+favorites&withinResults=false&srchstep=0&KeywordType=ALL&Titles=false&numDays=&maxResults=25

Good luck,

Asta
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
An update here would be nice.  Has any of this helped you?  Is more needed?  Anything change?

Thanks,
Asta

Author

Commented:
Sorry to not be responsive. I've been swamped.

Regarding Astaec's first comment:
Roaming Profiles Are Not Unloaded on a Computer That Is Running Terminal Services When GPOs Are Applied
(Q294268)
donander: Don't think this applies. Not running Terminal Services or applying GPO's.

Problems Using Roaming Profiles with Internet Explorer (Q255909)The information in this article applies
to: Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 5 , 5.01 , for Windows NT 4.0
donander: Don't think this applies. Not using actual Roaming Profiles.

How Not to Save Cached Internet Files with Roaming User Profiles (Q185255)
donander: Once again, not using Roaming Profiles and using IE 5.0 or 5.5, not 4.0 etc.

Regarding Astaec's second comment:
donander: I don't see anything here that indicates loss of IE Favorite location. Perhaps you could clarify.

New info from donander: I've pasted below the title and text of my ORIGINAL question that you asked for above. Note that I am not using actual Roaming Profiles. I search the Registry for "User Shell Folders" per the answer I got to the original question and, in the Favorites section of each occurance, I change C:\Windows\Favorites to Q:\Configs\Internet Explorer\Favorites, where Q: is a drive that is always mapped to the user's home directory on our NT4 file server. Each user gets their own home directory mapped by the logon script to \\servername\username so each user's Favorites are stored in their own home directory. I have noticed that if this Q drive is not mapped when you start IE (this happens, for example, if I'm logged on to an NT4 Workstation computer as administrator) then the Registry pointer reverts to the default location.

"Question: How to support IE Roaming Favorites
We have historically preferred Netscape to IE in our organization. We would like to switch over to IE,
but there is a problem. We use a simplistic way of enabling roaming bookmark/history access with Netscape.
This involves making a single Netscape profile, called "QDrive" on each workstation. This profile points
to the user's home directory on our NT4 server, which is mapped as Q: at logon. Netscape thinks it is
accessing one set of profile data but is actually accessing different profile data depending on who
is logged on to that workstation.

I have done some cursory research in setting up IE to allow favorites and history file roaming access
but it seems you need to be running some kind of MS roaming profile server. I can't get the resources
to do this.

I tried experimenting with registry edits on a workstation to re-point the favorites and history pointers
from their locations in c:\windows to Q: but this seems to have a destabilizing effect on the workstation.

Does anyone know of a simple solution to this problem? I would be willing to consider a solution that
involved installing some service on the current NT4 server where the user home directoies are stored."
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
Sorry for the delay in response here, up to my eyeballs in past due items and hit lists (nothing new).

Anyway, if you opt to move to IE6, as an example, prereqs are for Windows NT 4.0 to have SP6a and higher, also 32 MB of RAM minimum - Full install size: 12.7 MB.

This is fairly helpful on the deployment options (bookmarks, favorites, etc) and resource links.
http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/workshop/browser/external/overview/external_ovw_entry.asp
http://www.microsoft.com/ntserver/Default.asp
http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/workshop/browser/external/overview/external_ovw_entry.asp
http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/nhp/Default.asp?contentid=28000441

I wish I had more time to spend on this, but am so so so busy.

I'll check back when I can, and hopefully others will step in here to help as well.

Profiles are stored in the Registry of the local machine. Windows NT supports two types of profiles: roaming profiles, which are downloaded to a workstation or server when a user logs on, and mandatory profiles, which are roaming profiles whose contents may not be changed by users. Roaming profiles allow user settings to appear on any machine a user logs onto, with no action required on the user's part. Mandatory profiles do not save changes made by users, so environments stay consistent between logons.

http://www.microsoft.com/NTServer/ProductInfo/Comparisons/UNIX/NTSysman/4_DesktopConfig.asp

":0)
Asta






Author

Commented:
I checked the links you provided but could not find any info on keeping the favorites location I edit in the Registry from changing. I prefer not to use the current version of IE unless and until it becomes more stable. Regarding the profiles, remember that I am not using roaming profiles, nor do I want to since this will eat up more space on my server. I think that probably since what I'm doing is a hack that is not supported by Microsoft, perhaps there is no solution. Since there has been no activity other than you and I on this question, and since neither of us seems to have the time to devote to it, I would like to delete the question if that's alright with you.
Sometimes the "A" and correct answer is, indeed, it cannot be done (and supported).  It seems like a great deal of effort was put into this question and time on astaec's part, do you really feel it is fair to delete this?

Moondancer - EE Moderator

Author

Commented:
EE Moderator,

I spent a lot of time chasing down these leads which did not provide a solution to my problem. What about my time? If I were in astaec's shoes I would not want to receive points if I did not provide a solution. If astaec had said up front "this can not be done" and no one else responded in a reasonable amount of time (as has been the case) I would gladly award the points and even give an Excellent grade, because that IS a solution.

I use EE to save time. The time I spent researching astaec's leads I could have spent researching solutions on my own. I'm sorry if this doesn't seem fair to you Moondancer. Perhaps we should let astaec decide if it is fair. Sure, I'd like to preserve the points, but they aren't worth getting into a hassle over. If astaec says my proposal is not fair, I will award the points, but for cases like this I think you should have a checkbox labeled something like "no solution provided but a good effort was made."

By the way, you may have noticed that when I accepted vinnyd79's comment as the answer to the last question I posted, about getting the username from Windows 9x, I increased the points from 200 to 300 even though vinnyd79 said that wasn't necessary. Perhaps you should read the comments I made with that acceptance. In my job I need resolutions. If I could afford to spend the time to research all of them myself, I would do it but I simply don't have that much extra time. Solutions like vinnyd79's save me hours of time. I'd have given 1000 points for that answer. The points don't matter to me. Time is what I don't have enough of.

Regards,
donander
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
Please refund donander's points, I don't want points when I haven't helped find the A level solution I strive to find.  Perhaps then donander can try reposting this in the Web Programming topic areas instead.

Sorry I couldn't help you further, I'm swamped as well and know how you feel.

":0)
Asta

Thank you, astaec, for bringing this to our attention.

I have refunded to donander the 200 points for this question and closed this.

Moondancer - EE Moderator
Asta CuTechnical consultant & graphic design
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
Thank you, Moondancer, for your quick response.
":0)
Asta

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