How do I get rid of risidual user accounts in a workgroup environment.

Posted on 2013-07-01
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-07-03
Good evening experts,

this is probably going to be an easy one, but is there a simply way to get ride of user account left over folders when I delete them. Let me explain with visuals, because a picture is worth a thousand words. Here is my scenario:

Here is a hypothetical member user list:

Here is where I go to delete accounts:

Here is where I go to take care of any residual leftovers:


I would like to get rid of the unwanted accounts that put periods after the account and stay there. I can enumerate all of the users on all my machines using primal scripts and I can tell you this condition exist on most of my machines, so when I am coding, I have to do a case statement to take into consideration:

I don't want to have to go into safemode to delete the folders, but I am willing to do a reboot if there is some process or software that will delete those folders and any subfolders along with the files.

Your help is appreciated.
Question by:BLACK THANOS
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Expert Comment

ID: 39292074
All you have to do is delete the users profile then delete the account.  In that order.  

You will have to restart the computer and log into the adminstrator account or an account with admin rights in order to get the delete button for each of the profiles.

Author Comment

ID: 39295009
Did that. doesn't work that way. Residual folders still exist.

Assisted Solution

sbrozinick earned 600 total points
ID: 39295411
I have done this hundreds of times.  If the profile is deleted first - then there are no files to delete and only the account exists as if the account has never been logged into.

If you delete the accounts first (not suggested) the profile will be listed as account unknown.  Then all you have to do is delete the remaining directory that is stored in C:\Users.
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Author Comment

ID: 39298835
Okay, I'll grant that you are correct in that the profile should be deleted first. That is my problem, but still doesn't answer the original question, how do I get rid of the residual folders? I have gone as far as to take owner ship of the folders, log into the administrators account and still cant delete all of the folders with the deleted account. That's the golden nugget answer I am looking for. Now that you've proven that I have been deleting my accounts the wrong way, how do I get rid of the folders?
LVL 32

Accepted Solution

_ earned 1400 total points
ID: 39298905
Since you said a reboot is an option, I would just download and burn a Linux Live cd/dvd/usb and boot to that. Do Not choose to install it, just run it from the cd/dvd/usb.
Go to the hard drive and delete the folders.
Turn off the computer, take out the media, turn on the computer.

Most of the people around here like Knoppix or Ubuntu, (the free version should do it):

I'm kind of partial to Mandriva, myself:

Author Comment

ID: 39298937
That's the golden nugget I was looking for
LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 39298971
Thank you much.   : )

Having a Live distro around, does come in handy every once in a while.  ; )

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