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Microsoft Office 2003 - Normal.dot settings and Terminal server environments

Posted on 2006-06-23
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Last Modified: 2008-01-09
Our organization runs in a terminal server environment.  Not long ago one of the Tservers started acting funny so we migrated or I should say, copied user profiles to a new server.  This is my problem.  Old users cannot save their default settings to the normal.dot.  With that being said, new users can.  I have compared account setups and security settings between the old users and new users and cannot find any difference.  How can I fix the old users so that they can save their default settings.  I do not think that the old users could save their default settings on the old server either.  Short of deleting entire profiles, this would effect their exchange mail boxes, does anyone have any suggestions on how to fix this problem?  Is there a registry setting somewhere?  

I cannot uninstall office and reinstall it.

Any help would be much appreciated.
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Question by:givemeaclue
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by:mrwaqar
ID: 16977737
You said they cannot save but didn't mention what is the problem they get while saving. Do they get an error message or it just doesn't save? Some more details will be helpful
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by:givemeaclue
ID: 16983749
When the user chooses Format --> Font then changes settings and clicks on 'default', a question pops up, do you want to change your default font to whatever, this change will affect all new documents based on the NORMAL template? The user clicks on yes.  The changes will stay in affect until they exit out of Word.  When the user opens Word up again the defaults are back to the orginal settings.   There are no error messages it just doesn't keep the changes.  

For the newer users the Normal.dot is under c:\documents and settings\%user%\Application Data\Microsoft\Templates. For the older users it is not.  I tried placing the Normal.dot under the previously mentioned path but it doesn't make a difference.  It still does not get updated.  I am not exactly sure where the normal.dot is being pulled from unless it is being pulled from the All Users folder...
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by:mrwaqar
ID: 16986221
It is generally from the user's profile. Try this.. Make the changes in the normal.dot and instead of replacing the same one, save it as say Normal1.dot in the same folder as normal.dot.. now browse to the location of the normal.dot and delete/rename existing normal.dot and rename the newly created file normal1.dot to normal.dot and see if that makes a difference.

Good Luck!
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by:givemeaclue
ID: 16994972
Okay, that changes the current default settings which is fine however, it seems that everytime you want to change your default font the same process needs to be followed. Now that we have a new Normal.dot and it has the correct security settings why do you suppose it doesn't change on the fly, do you think that something may have gotten corrupted when we changed users from one server to another?
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by:mrwaqar
ID: 16995422
I feel it is something to do with permissions. Did you try making the change in the new dot file in a normal way? It may work since it was created by the user and the ownership rights are with user.
Good Luck!
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by:givemeaclue
ID: 17004387
That is what I was trying to say, when you make changes to your default settings, then close word, the settings revert back to whatever the normal.dot was.  If you try and change the settings and save it as NORMAL.dot you cannot because normal.dot is in use therefore you have to go through the process of saving as normal1.dot then delete normal.dot and rename normal1.dot to normal.dot.  Is there another 'normal way' that I am not thinking of?  

I have no clue where these permissions reside other than in the documents and settings folder. Our permissions are inherited from the top down.  In this case the only persons that have permission to the documents and settings folder is the TSERVER Admin, Domain Admins, System and the user. The owner of the objects is the Tserver Admin.

Originally I thought it was a group policy issue but new users have the same group policies as the old users and they have no problems.

The good news is that I now have a band-aid for the situation.  
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by:givemeaclue
ID: 17265981
I will leave it up to you on what you want to do with the points.  Saving the normal.dot file as something else then renaming it to normal.dot has profided a work around to the problem but is not a permanent fix.  I will accept that as a temporary answer to my problem.  I believe that the only way to fix the problem is to rebuild each profile from scratch.  Apparently copying a profile from one server to another is not a very clean way of doing things.  
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