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User Profile Folder Names: How are names determined - Windows 8.1

Posted on 2014-03-27
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Last Modified: 2014-03-27
I am using Windows 8.1 and have recently gotten into learning all the details on user profile folders, shell folders, Hard/Soft links, Appdata, Program Data, Desktop etc etc.  I thought I had it all understood but then I was learning based on Windows 7.  

So now when I look at my Windows 8.1 PC I see something different?  On this PC there are 3 users: Joseph (Administrator account), Diane, Louisa.  The PC name is Titan (and I think I registered Win 8.1 to Louisa Storen, LISW).  Joseph, me, logs in using my Microsoft Account, which is Joseph Boyd.  So Win 8.1 shows Joseph Boyd as user.  The other people log in using local accounts, thus Diane or Louisa.  I expand my folders (including all the hidden folders which are now visible) and here is what I get:
Under Desktop: Folder name Joseph Boyd (no other users), but then under Local Disk (C), under Users, I have the following folders: Default, Default.migrated, Diane,  Joseph, Louisa, Louisa.TITAN, & Public.

So my questions are:
1.) Why is the User Profile Folder named "Joseph" and not "Joseph Boyd" since Joseph Boyd is how I'm logged in, and then...
2.) why does the folder directory show "Joseph Boyd" as a folder name?
2.) What is Louisa.TITAN?

Thank you!
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Question by:JoeBoyd
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Accepted Solution

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weinberk earned 500 total points
ID: 39959284
1) Your user profile folder name is based on your username (joseph), no the display name (your full name in this case).  If you used the username "JOE" when setting up your account, and linked it to your Microsoft Account, the folder would be JOE.

2) I'm not sure what you mean by "folder directory" and candidly, I'm not all that familiar with microsoft accounts.  However, I would assume that it's using your "display name, "aka your full name, to make things more user friendly.

3) The .computername (or .domainname which is more common when I machine is in an office environment) happens when the profile folder name that would ordinarily be used (username) is already there.  Did you recreate the Louisa account at any point or initially create the account with Louisa as the admin, then rename that account and add Louisa again?

Hope this helps.
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Author Comment

by:JoeBoyd
ID: 39959325
weinberk, thanks for the quick response
1.) Ok, got it.
2.) Folder Directory.. I meant if I use Windows Explorer in the left pane, I get the following:
Desktop
     Skydrive
     Homegroup
     Joseph Boyd
     This PC
     Libraries
     Network
     Control Panel
     Recycle Bin
3.) I think you might be right on.  It's been awhile since I built and setup up a PC and the first time with Windows 8, then updating to 8.1.  I think I did do what you stated..hhmm...or something similiar.  I know I was messing around with accounts quite a bit.
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Expert Comment

by:weinberk
ID: 39959523
Pleasure.

for 2 above, I'm afraid I'm just guessing.  Once you use a microsoft account, it integrates in.  I assume that it has your full name there because that's how you registered with MS.  Remember that you're loking at a folder hierarchy here that isn't really folders on your C drive.  There's cloud services, control panel, etc.  MS is just being "Apple-esque"
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Author Comment

by:JoeBoyd
ID: 39959684
I think you're right weinberk!!  I never thought of that but that's exactly what it is I'm sure.  This is the first time I've used a MS account to log in.  Before with Vista and Win 7 I used local accounts and even though I know they changed some of the folder structure with Win 8 it's still basically the same as it was with Vista.  Except for the MS account thing and Skydrive, etc.  Great! Thanks!  I think I have all the answers now - well, you never have all the answers when it comes to Windows 8.1 lol
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Author Closing Comment

by:JoeBoyd
ID: 39959686
See the last comment I just made.  Thanks you explained things very very well and your followup response filed in the last piece perfectly.  I appreciate it!
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