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Brad's TechTips - Windows

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Windows: Copy a Local Profile to a Domain Profile in Windows 7
 
In Windows XP it was fairly easy to copy one profile to another.  Not so for Windows 7.  Use the following procedure to copy a Windows 7 local user profile to a domain user profile on the same computer.  (This procedure requires modifications to the Registry.  As always, exercise caution when making any changes to the Registry, and have a full backup... just in case.)

 

Part 1 - Modify permissions on the profile folder
  • Logon to the computer using the domain account.
  • Logout from the domain account.
  • Logon using a different domain account with administrative rights on the computer.
  • Browse to the local user's profile at c:\users\<LocalUserName>.
  • Right-click the profile folder, select Properties and then the Security tab.
  • Click the Add button and add the domain user with Full Control permissions. (If this fails with an Access Denied message, then first take ownership of the folder, also using the Security tab but within the Advanced button, and then re-attempt the step.)
  • Click the Advanced button and select the option to replace permissions on all child objects.
  • Click OK until all permissions have been applied and you are out of the Properties dialog.
Part 2 - Modify the Registry permissions for the profile folder.
  • If hidden or protected operating system files are not already viewable, then expose them from the Folder Options control panel.
  • Start RegEdit from the Start>Run menu.
  • Select on HKEY_Local_Machine.
  • Select File>Load Hive from the menu bar.
  • Browse to the NTUSER.dat file within the local user's profile, typically at c:\users\<LocalUserName>.
  • Give the new hive a random name, such as MyNewHive, and click OK.
  • Expand HKEY_Local_Machine.
  • Right-click MyNewHive (assuming that's what you named it) and select Permissions.
  • Add the domain user and assign Full Control permissions.
  • Click the Advanced button and select the option to replace permissions on all child objects.
  • Select MyNewHive again and then select File>Remove Hive from the menu bar.
Part 3 - Modify the profile path for the domain user.
  • Re-open RegEdit if you had closed it after the previous step.
  • Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_Machine\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList
  • Click on each entry beneath ProfileList until you find the one with a value for ProfileImagePath that corresponds to the local user.
  • Copy the value, which should look like c:\users\<LocalUserName>.
  • Click on each entry again until you find the one with a value for ProfileImagePath that corresponds to the domain user.
  • Paste the value from the local user into this one.
  • Click OK and then quit RegEdit.
  • Re-hide hidden and protected operating system files if you had exposed them in the first step of Part 2.
Part 4 - Complete the process.
  • Reboot the computer.
  • Logon using the domain user account and verify that all settings and files have carried over. (Passwords may need to be re-entered for programs such as Outlook.)
 

[Credit: This information was based on a similar tip at ITSwapShop.com (http://bit.ly/slTrZy).]