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Migrating user profiles

Posted on 2008-06-20
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hi,

I am in the middle of reinstall a Windows 2003 Standard Edition server. The previous installation was very poor and the system has never worked well so we made the decision to just reinstall the whole thing.

Now I got all the clients to leave the domain and then reinstall the server and setup the domain. So far everything has gone well. My next step was going to be to use the "Copy to" feature in Windows XP to copy profile from one to the other. What I now found was that the Copy To feature cant be run if the account doesnt exist anymore (since the it left the domain).

I cant run any of the migration tools out there because they all require you to run it prior to the migration, when you are logged in as the actual user.

I tried changing the SID path and permissions on the folder but this did not work either (various problems appeared including outlook refusing to start and the recently opened section of the start menu wouldnt work).

So basically I now have a new user with a new SID and need to move the content of the old one over. How do I go about doing this? Obviously keeping the regular desktop, my documents, registry and local settings.

Is there anyway I can change the SID on the server so that the new user uses the same SID as the old user did?

I am in a hurry as I am only here for another day so I would appreciate any quick advice!
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Question by:Fredde87
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by:JapyDooge
JapyDooge earned 200 total points
ID: 21830838
The only thing i was able to find was this:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Server/Windows_2003_Active_Directory/Q_23061858.html

Altrough i heard about ppl who did it by doing a lot of motifications in the registery, but i guess that is'nt a good start at a new server... I won't advice it.
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by:Fredde87
ID: 21830984
Problem is that I havent got any backups of the old server. It was so bad that we didnt want the reinstall to have anything to do with the old one.

I think I got it to work though! I tried updating the SID on the client as I did previously but now I also updated GUID. And now everything seems to run smoothly!!

I will do a bit more testing but it looks really promising so far.

Thanks!
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Expert Comment

by:JapyDooge
ID: 21831037
Good luck, updating the SID on the clients are the way to go i think.

If you are'nt using it already, i suggest you to use NewSID to also change the computer SID.
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Fredde87 earned 0 total points
ID: 21834979
Ok this way only works if the user is a administrator. I had massive problems with non admin users since the security settings for NTUSER.dat (Registry) and several office hive files would not update. Regedit would only set permissions for local users and not domain users so it got way to complicated. So I mad the few non admin users I had admin on that PC only. This is how I did it in the end.


1. I logged in with the new user so that the SID and GUID information got created in the registry.
2. Log out and back in again as an administrator
3. I then opened up HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\ProfileList and found the entry refering to the new user (most likely at the bottom).
4. Changed the path to the old path
5. Open up Documents and Settings and the properties for the user in question.
6. Remove the old user from Security and add the new one with full rights.
7. Open User Account under Control Panel and select add.
8. Enter the users name and the domain name and select Administrators on the next page.


Thanks for you help JapyDooge!
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