Hidden folders "Application Data", "Local Settings" do not show up for user owner even after changing folder options to "View Hidden files and folders"

My client has a XP Media Center 2005 box and when logged in as Owner we cannot see any of the hidden folders underneath Documents and Settings\Owner folder.  When we change the folder options to "View Hidden files and folders" and apply to all, it does not remember that setting.  Owner is an Adminsitrator on this machine.  If I login to any other Administrator user on the machine I can see Owner's hidden directories.  Additional Background... Three months ago a new user had been created automatically and my clients Owner ID was pointing to that directory.  I had to go into the registry and point Owner back to Owner and not Owner.xyz

Workaround:  I added a new user w/ Admin rights and copies all of the hidden folders from owner to that user.  I have everything working, but I sure would like to understand what happened and use the Owner login versus the Temporary one.

Additional Information:  Client also has what looks like IE 7 on machine.  Except there is no bar at the top.  Now way to select "File, Edit, View" etc... You have an address bar and if I go to google.com it shows up but when I type something in the search area and hit enter nothing happens.

Any ideas?

Thanks,

Rus
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RusGeekAsked:
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MereteConnect With a Mentor Commented:
did you move the index.dat or user.dat for that profile?
r/click my computer properties  advanced User profiles
or boot safemode.
try using search assistant type in .dbx for the emails if that is what your looking for in application data.
The way accounts work, when windows is installed if no one is added to the who will use this computer the owner becomes the default administrator.
If this windows xp home try safemode.

The command shell is a separate software program that provides direct communication between the user and the operating system
%ALLUSERSPROFILE%  Local   Returns the location of the All Users Profile.
 
%APPDATA%    Local     Returns the location where applications store data by default.
 
%CD%    Local Returns the current directory string.
 HOMEPATH%    System              Returns the full path of the user's home directory. Set based on the value of the home directory. The user's home directory is specified in Local Users and Groups.
 
http://www.microsoft.com/resources/documentation/windows/xp/all/proddocs/en-us/ntcmds_shelloverview.mspx?mfr=true

Recover A Damaged Windows XP User Profile
http://www.lockergnome.com/nexus/it/2004/12/15/get-it-done-recover-a-damaged-windows-xp-user-profile/

How to take ownership of a file or folder in Windows XP
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308421

hope this helps you
Merete
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RusGeekAuthor Commented:
This was an excellent answer to both problems.  I ended up turning simple file sharing off to get the Security tab to show up and after taking ownership and setting full permission to myself it was history.  

I also did not know that profiles worked that way.  To check another idea, I also created yet another user, and did a copy of everything under Documents and Settings\Original User to the new one except for the hidden profile files in the root of Original User.  This also works as well, the only issues are Email accounts but those can be re-entered.  

Thanks for an awesome answer!
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MereteCommented:
my pleasure indeed. You are most welcome. :)
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