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Windows 7: Restoring permissions on fixed corrupted profile?

12 May 2016   #1
ellentk

Windows Pro 64 bit
 
 
Restoring permissions on fixed corrupted profile?

I'm going to try restoring a corrupted profile by copying files from the corrupted one to a new profile. I have the following questions:

1. Microsoft's "Fix A Corrupted User Profile" page advises not to copy ntuser.dat, ntuser.dat.log, and ntuser.ini. My corrupted profile has quite a few files beginning with ntuser, some look similar to keys in the profilelist section of the registry, some have different names than the three MS refers to. Should any of them be copied into the new profile?

2. The corrupted profile shared files with other computers, based on the profile's user name. What's the best way to maintain the share and ownership settings? Will renaming the old profile and then changing the name of the new profile to what the old one was called maintain these settings?

3. I'm going to take this opportunity to move some of the larger files in the corrupted profile off my C: drive. Will that create a problem if they are not transferred to the new profile?

Thanks very much for any help.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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12 May 2016   #2
RolandJS

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

Your idea just might work! However, try this first: tweaking.com's Windows Repair (All in One) -- boot Safe Mode with Networking, use the built-in registry backup if desired, enter Repairs: checkmark the boxes related to permissions of system files and all other files; checkmark #26 #27, if an item is unrelated or is not broke - leave box unchecked. Click the GO button; and go read chapter[s] of your favorite book -- cause it will take a long while. And, it's best to not meddle with computer things while WR is running.

Addendum: The next poster gave information that convinced me: my first sentence is wrong!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 May 2016   #3
Pyprohly

Windows 10, Windows 8.1 Pro, Windows 7 Professional, OS X El Capitan
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ellentk View Post
Microsoft's "Fix A Corrupted User Profile" page advises not to copy ntuser.dat, ntuser.dat.log, and ntuser.ini. My corrupted profile has quite a few files beginning with ntuser, some look similar to keys in the profilelist section of the registry, some have different names than the three MS refers to. Should any of them be copied into the new profile?
While I don’t advise against the practise, in your case, it’s definitely in your interest to start from scratch. Those files may very well be the culprit of your profile’s corruption, and if so, migrating them won’t help your situation.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ellentk View Post
What's the best way to maintain the share and ownership settings? Will renaming the old profile and then changing the name of the new profile to what the old one was called maintain these settings?
No, obviously that would not work. What of the renamed account? Do they simply lose access to their files after the name change? No.

Windows identifies security principals by their SID, not by their user-friendly display name. In the case of user accounts, its the end portion, the RID portion of the SID that distinguishes users from one another. So if you wanted to transfer a bunch of existing file security settings to a new user, you’d have to change the RID of the old user and edit the RID of the new user to match that of the old user’s previous RID. (This applies to local accounts only!)

I do not know any methods of changing a local account’s RID.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ellentk View Post
I'm going to take this opportunity to move some of the larger files in the corrupted profile off my C: drive. Will that create a problem if they are not transferred to the new profile?
No. Why would it?


There’s only so much you can do in an attempt to fix a corrupt user profile, and honestly not many of those things are worth doing. It’s easier to just start from scratch and slowly work yourself back to the settings you had. Nonetheless, have you seen User Profile Service failed the logon. User profile cannot be loaded. tutorial and Fix a corrupted user profile yet?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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13 May 2016   #4
ellentk

Windows Pro 64 bit
 
 

Thanks so much for your replies, guys. And thanks for the links to those tutorials. (Oh the joys of being an autodidact!)

That's what I thought about the ntuser files, but I wanted to check.

Thank you for explaining about SIDs and RIDs. It prompted me to watch a youtube video that educated me some more. If I understand things now, am I correct in thinking I can move the appdata files from my corrupted profile to a new user account and most of them will probably work if they're in a group that has access and if they don't I just change ownership and permissions to the new user name, oh wait! I mean SID? (I moved my desktop folder to a new test account and things worked fine.)

Also, once the old profile files are pasted in the new account, is there any reason to keep the old account/SID alive? I noticed I could sign into the account from my ipad using the name of the corrupted profile, but I'm not sure what's going on behind the scenes there.

If it is worth keeping the old profile around, can I remove the appdata folder from it, as two of these are too big for my c: drive?

Thanks again for your very helpful response. The only good thing about having my profile trashed is I've learned a thing or two.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2016   #5
Pyprohly

Windows 10, Windows 8.1 Pro, Windows 7 Professional, OS X El Capitan
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ellentk View Post
If I understand things now, am I correct in thinking I can move the appdata files from my corrupted profile to a new user account and most of them will probably work if they're in a group that has access and if they don't I just change ownership and permissions to the new user name, oh wait! I mean SID? (I moved my desktop folder to a new test account and things worked fine.)
You should encounter no problems migrating all your files and folders to the new user account with a simple drag-drop operation via Windows Explorer, just as you've done with the Desktop folder. Immediately after the files are moved to the new location under the new user profile, they’ll become accessible by your new user due to inheritable permissions that will take effect.

For simplicity sake, we should refer to security principals by name. Only computers need to deal with SIDs. So “changing the permissions to the new user name” is a perfectly acceptable clause.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ellentk View Post
Also, once the old profile files are pasted in the new account, is there any reason to keep the old account/SID alive? [...] If it is worth keeping the old profile around, can I remove the appdata folder from it, as two of these are too big for my c: drive?
No use in keeping something you will no longer need. I’d remove the old profile as soon as you’re done with it. As you can infer, it’s only going to take up space at this point.

But make sure there’s nothing of importance in that AppData folder. Perhaps give it a week.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ellentk View Post
I noticed I could sign into the account from my ipad using the name of the corrupted profile, but I'm not sure what's going on behind the scenes there.
Logging in with an iPad, eh?? That's new.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 May 2016   #6
ellentk

Windows Pro 64 bit
 
 

Thank you again for all your help. Your advice and support really helped me through a difficult situation.

I just finished restoring all the files from my old profile and the new one seems to work well except for some settings I have to tinker with.

I don't think it's an exaggeration to say I couldn't have done it without you. Thank you!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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