magical disappearing documents

We have our personal folders default to the network drive instead of the local drive.  Our user has been working for two weeks on various documents.  
After lunch all of a sudden, no documents are populated in the folder.
Furthermore, no documents are on the backup tape.

Now we are wondering:
1 What could cause a documents folder to initialized to default settings?
2 What would allow the user to reboot many times in the past, and then have this change after another normal reboot?  
3 This documents did exist, do you know of any low-level file searches that will not be broken by permission settings?
jn2112Asked:
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lloydclintonConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Sorry to hear that it has come to this.  I can't think of anything else that may be helpful here and for expediency it may be best that the documents are recreated.
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lloydclintonCommented:
Many of the times offline files will kick in when you configure document redirection.  I have seen it turn on without asking.  Check the following directories:

C:\ Documents and Settings\<username>\Application Data\Microsoft

C:\ Documents and Settings\<username>\Local Settings\Temp
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lloydclintonCommented:
if that doesn't work:

The offline files are cashed in directories located
"%systemroot"/CSC/% these directories are labeled d1,d2,d3, .... You can
locate the your file by the files data/time stamp and size. If you copy
the file to a temporary location and rename it to the name and extension
needed you will be able to open it
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jn2112Author Commented:
i did try both
this is a windows 7 os
i did find the win 7 equivalent pathing of the above

at the end of the rabbit trail, i did manage to locate the proper locations.  the folders where empty except for the dummy documents we put in for testing purposes
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lloydclintonCommented:
Not good!  Check the servers again to be sure and maybe try a recovery piece of software like Recuva (http://www.recuva.com) on the machine.
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jn2112Author Commented:
We never could find those objects.  

I was able to prove the backup software is including that pc.  
I like your input, those are good tries, but we never did find those docs.

the recuva did not find them either.

if you have another ideas or tricks, we will try them.
At this point the end user has moved on and started recreating their stuff.
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jn2112Author Commented:
good input
we never could get what we are looking 4
im not sure anyone could
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