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Folder name on Documents folder using Group Policy redirection

Posted on 2008-10-15
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Last Modified: 2013-12-12
Network consists of Windows 2003 servers and XP workstations.  We are replacing the old XP workstations with new ones running Vista Business.  We are using group policy to redirect the Documents (formerly My Documents) folder to a server location.  The server location is a public share accessible by all users where the folder names are the folder owner's logon name; i.e., the folder belonging to user "JFranks" is named "JFranks," and so on for each user.

The problem I'm facing is a known one in Vista - when you redirect the Documents folder, the folder display name is changed to "Documents" rather than displaying the actual folder name.  So, what will happen is that in the public folder location, EVERY FOLDER will now display the name "Documents" instead of the user's logon name.  Obviously, we can't work this way since no one will be able to find the folder they need.

In previous deployments, we were using the user's home folder (private) for the redirection, so it wasn't a problem because no other user could access or see that folder anyway.

Does anyone have a way of correcting this issue so that the actual folder names will display?
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Question by:Hypercat (Deb)
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:martin_babarik
ID: 22728443
Hello,

what about redirecting the folder to the following path?
\\servername\sharename\%username%
?
Regards
Martin
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:carlpearson20151
ID: 22730006
It's a bit of a pain, but here is what I did.

The Desktop.ini file is a hidden file located in everyone's Documents directory.
You need to access this file and add the following to the top of the file:

[DeleteOnCopy]
Owner=jfranks
Personalized=5
PersonalizedName=My Documents

The Owner line will change the display for the folder.

Hope this helps.

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LVL 38

Author Comment

by:Hypercat (Deb)
ID: 22730877
Sounds like a great idea - I'll give that a try.  Do you know whether it matters when I do this if the user is logged on or off?  If I do it while they're logged on, will the desktop.ini from the workstation overwrite the desktop.ini that is in their redirected folder?  Also, if the OS is Vista, the PersonalizedName would have to be "Documents," not "My Documents," right?
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LVL 38

Accepted Solution

by:
Hypercat (Deb) earned 0 total points
ID: 22732832
Sorry, Carl, that didn't work.  I took a look, and that does the same thing as making the user the owner of the folder.  I had already tried that, and on the server end it fixes the problem, but on a Vista machine the folder still displays as "Documents."   The only workaround I've found so far is to delete the desktop.ini file, but it can reappear.  I'm just not sure yet what causes it to reappear and how that might be prevented.
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LVL 38

Author Comment

by:Hypercat (Deb)
ID: 22735368
OK - I am going to accept my own post as the solution, since it seems there is no one out there that has been able to solve this in any way.  In order to make it work and ensure that it continues to work if a new desktop.ini file is created, I wrote a logoff script. It's a "Rube Goldberg" type of solution at this point, but it works.  Here's the content of the logoff script:

w:
cd [main folder name]\%username%
attrib -s -h desktop.ini
del desktop.ini

NOTE: The first line of the script is the mapped drive letter of the shared resources, in this case "W:". It could as well be a UNC path. The second line changes the directory to the user's subfolder. The third line changes the attributes of the desktop.ini folder so that it can be deleted, then the fourth line deletes the file.
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