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Why do all users have default set paths using system account folders?

Posted on 2014-07-21
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Last Modified: 2014-07-27
I have been trying to diagnose an  issue with an application when I noticed that my test user had most of its paths set to a system profile..

So I deleted my test user profile and logged in so it will create a new user profile.  It did it again.  Most of the paths are set to a SYSTEM user profile.  I tried several other users allow them to create new profiles and they all have the same issue.

I moved the machine into a different OU with no GP applied and the issue is still happening.  Here is an example of cmd->set for a normal user.. this is not the system profile, but lots of the variables are set to that for some reason.

ADMINTOOLS=ADMINTOOLS
ALLUSERSPROFILE=C:\Documents and Settings\All Users
APPDATA=C:\Users\xxxxx\AppData\Roaming
CACHE=C:\Documents and Settings\SYSTEM\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files
CDBURNING=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\AppData\Local\Microsoft\CD Burning
COMMONADMINTOOLS=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools
COMMONAPPDATA=C:\ProgramData\
COMMONDESKTOP=C:\Users\Public\Desktop\
COMMONDOCUMENTS=C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents
COMMONFAVORITES=C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Favorites
COMMONFILES=C:\Program Files\Common Files\
COMMONMUSIC=C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\My Music
COMMONPICTURES=C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\My Pictures
CommonProgramFiles=C:\Program Files\Common Files
COMMONPROGRAMS=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\
COMMONSTARTMENU=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\
COMMONSTARTUP=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\
COMMONTEMPLATES=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Templates\
COMMONVIDEO=C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents\My Videos
ComSpec=C:\Windows\system32\cmd.exe
COOKIES=C:\Documents and Settings\SYSTEM\Cookies
DEFAULTUSERPROFILE=C:\Documents and Settings\Default User
DESKTOP=C:\Users\Public\Desktop\
FAVORITES=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Favorites\
FONTS=C:\Windows\Fonts\
FP_NO_HOST_CHECK=NO
x=w sdfsdfzzz
HISTORY=C:\Documents and Settings\SYSTEM\Local Settings\History
HOMEDRIVE=Z:
HOMEPATH=\
HOMESHARE=\\x.x.x\xxxxx
KMP_DUPLICATE_LIB_OK=TRUE
LOCALAPPDATA=C:\Users\xxxxx\AppData\Local
LOCALSETTINGS=C:\Documents and Settings\SYSTEM\Local Settings
MEDIAPATH=C:\Windows\Media
MSSHAREDTOOLS=C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared
MYMUSIC=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Documents\My Music
MYPICTURES=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Pictures\
MYVIDEO=MYVIDEO
NETHOOD=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Network Shortcuts\
NUMBER_OF_PROCESSORS=1
OS=Windows_NT
Path=C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Windows Live;C:\apps\watcom-1.3\binnt;C:\apps\watcom-1.3\binw;C:\Windows\system32;C:\Windows;C:\Windows\System32\Wbem;C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\;C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\;C:\Program Files\java\jdk1.7.0_21\bin\;C:\Program Files\MATLAB\R2013a\bin;C:\Program Files\Windows Live\Shared;C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\
PATHEXT=.COM;.EXE;.BAT;.CMD;.VBS;.VBE;.JS;.JSE;.WSF;.WSH;.MSC
PERSONAL=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Documents\
PRINTHOOD=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Printer Shortcuts\
PROCESSOR_ARCHITECTURE=x86
PROCESSOR_IDENTIFIER=x86 Family 6 Model 44 Stepping 2, GenuineIntel
PROCESSOR_LEVEL=6
PROCESSOR_REVISION=2c02
PROFILESDIRECTORY=C:\Documents and Settings
ProgramData=C:\ProgramData
ProgramFiles=C:\Program Files\
PROGRAMS=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\
PROMPT=$P$G
PSModulePath=C:\Windows\system32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\Modules\
PUBLIC=C:\Users\Public
RECENT=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Recent\
SENDTO=C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\SendTo\
SESSIONNAME=Console
STARTMENU=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\
STARTUP=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\
SystemDrive=C:
SystemRoot=C:\Windows
TEMP=C:\Documents and Settings\SYSTEM\AppData\Local\Temp
TEMPLATES=C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Templates\
TMP=C:\Documents and Settings\SYSTEM\AppData\Local\Temp
UATDATA=C:\Windows\CCM\UATData\D9F8C395-CAB8-491d-B8AC-179A1FE1BE77
USERNAME=xxxxx
USERPROFILE=C:\Users\xxxxx
WATCOM=C:\apps\watcom-1.3
windir=C:\Windows
windows_tracing_flags=3
windows_tracing_logfile=C:\BVTBin\Tests\installpackage\csilogfile.log

Anyone know what may have caused this issue to happen?  I can recreate the issue on all of my lab computers I have tested.

Shell Folders and User Shell folders both have all of the variables set properly in them.  Where is CMD->Set getting its variables from and how do I set them to the proper variables?
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Question by:gacus
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by:McKnife
McKnife earned 500 total points
ID: 40210860
Setup a test machine, join it to your domain and setup auditing on that registry branch named environment in HKCU. That way you'll see who does it and when it happens.
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by:gacus
ID: 40211580
If I look under HKCU, not all these variables are even set.
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by:gacus
ID: 40211582
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Netscaler Common Configuration How To guides

If you use NetScaler you will want to see these guides. The NetScaler How To Guides show administrators how to get NetScaler up and configured by providing instructions for common scenarios and some not so common ones.

 
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Accepted Solution

by:
McKnife earned 500 total points
ID: 40211764
Ok... what you see there are user variables. What you see with "set" are both user- and system variables. In regedit, the system variables are under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Environment

...sorry, missed that.
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by:gacus
gacus earned 0 total points
ID: 40211909
Thanks!  I was able to figure out it was a legacy application installer setting all this variables.  I had to go through a list of installers and watch these keys to figure out which application was doing it.  It was fun!
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Author Closing Comment

by:gacus
ID: 40222264
it was part of the fix
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