Local roaming profiles do not merge with server profiles after first logon

Posted on 2008-06-11
Last Modified: 2010-04-21
Using server 2003 and windows xp workstations and affecting all roaming profiles:
When logging in for the first time on a new workstation, the roaming profile downloads fine. When logging off, any changes made during that session are merged correctly with the server profile - for instance, deleting a favourite and adding a new one is reflected in the server profile after logoff.
But any subsequents logons to that workstation will only use the cached local profile and not merge any changes to the server profile. So if the user has added a printer or favourite while logged on to a different PC, this does not merge across when logging on to the original PC. Also, with the subsequent logons, any additional files and objects are uploaded to the server profile during logoff, but any deletions are not.
Users have full control on their profile folders. Users can also browse to their server profile and create/delete files there.

I want users to be able to delete printers and favourites on one PC and still have them removed when logging on to a different PC they have logged on before. Other folders are redirected (my documents, desktop).

Am I missing something here with the way roaming profiles work, or is there a problem with our roaming profiles?
Currently, we have to delete a cached profile before the user can log on and get the server profile (I checked that the server timestamps are more current than the local ones).

Any help much appreciated
Question by:DorisOnline
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

ID: 21759513

if machines are always connected to domain for log on could you remove locally stored profiles at log off by removing cached profiles?

to test this edit

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

and give value of 0
LVL 25

Expert Comment

ID: 21759522
this will stop the machines from caching local profiles and shoudl request teh profile form teh server each time

Author Comment

ID: 21760473
slam69, I guess you setting the "cachedlogonvalues" to 0? If so, I tried that, and the behaviour did not change; local profiles are still cached and changes are still not replicated through the profile on the server.
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

ID: 21760498
then you must have a gpo or something overriding as if you set that to 0 no profiles are cached locally

Author Comment

ID: 21768834
As a test, I created a new OU with a test account and two test computers and applied no gpo at all, also blocked inheritance of the default domain policy. Since our accounts regularly show event 1525 (source userenv) in the application event log, I also created a new share called profiles1 on the server and set the test account profile path to this share, making sure offline caching is turned of on this share. This did get rid of the 1525 event, but the original problem remains. Then I set the cachedlogonvalues to 0, removed the cached profile after a reboot, but after logging on and off, the newly created local profile remains.
I applied a new gpo on the test OU with "Delete cached copied of roaming profiles" set to enabled (I guess this does the same thing as setting cachedlogonvalues to 0?), still local profile remains.
Running the group policy results wizard against the pc shows that the gpo (and no other) is indeed applied.
Checking the eventlog does show the occasional event 1517 (source userenv) when user logs off; not sure that's relevant.
Running out of ideas here...
LVL 25

Expert Comment

ID: 21768852
check the following seems to be pointed towards our issue, stated if you have that gpo turned on and no EFS key then this could cause the proble, are you suing efs? try the res anyway see if ti helps
LVL 25

Accepted Solution

slam69 earned 400 total points
ID: 21768867
also with same issue.. this basicallymeans the registry is not unloading properly and might be why teh profile is not being written back to server

Author Comment

ID: 21770160
spot on slam69!
I installed UPHClean on the 2 test pcs as advised in your link, and it immediately fixed every problem described so far. The 1517 events disappeared, the gpo to delete cached profiles worked and finally the roaming profiles worked as they should, even after I disabled the gpo to delete the cached profiles and put the pcs and test account back in the old OU.
Turns out, it's the virus scanner causing the problem; not allowing the profile to log off completely.
Here's what UPHClean writes to the eventlog at logoff:

Type:      Information
Source:      UPHClean
Event ID:      1401
Event Time:      12/06/2008 15:40:55
User:      TESTDOMAIN\testprofile
Computer:      testcomputer
The following handles in user profile hive TESTDOMAIN\testprofile (S-1-5-21-708935558-1860075212-635260049-8103) have been remapped because they were preventing the profile from unloading successfully:
Rtvscan.exe (1616)
  HKCU\Software\Intel\LANDesk\VirusProtect6\CurrentVersion\Custom Tasks\Default Scan Options (0x404)
  HKCU\Software\Intel\LANDesk\VirusProtect6\CurrentVersion\Custom Tasks\c79f36a3-4fd6-47e3-bf24-6bb9937d47df (0x90c)

RTvscan.exe is our AV client - symantec and yest, it's way out of date.
I also tested a pc without installing UPHClean and disabling all symantec services in stead: this also fixed the problem.

This also explains another thing that was bugging us; we could never delete a local profile after logging off without restarting the pc because apparently rtvscan.exe was locking ntuser.dat. Now it deleted fine without a restart.

Thanks for the help slam69
LVL 25

Expert Comment

ID: 21770240
always good to get there in the end, if you can please remember to close the question and attricute points id be grateful!!

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31466111
Thank again

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