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Windows 7: User Profiles - Create and Move During Windows 7 Installation

16 Jul 2013   #690
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

I would never delete the original ProgramData and Users from C:, nor would I redirect them using links or junctions. My take on this matter is described in post #30 in this thread.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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30 Sep 2013   #691
Arbaraith

Windows 7 Home x64
 
 

Hello
I read through the tutorial and i think i got it all but i wanted to make sure. I just got a 120GB SDD and a fresh installation of W7 is my plan.
Can i do this tutorial with a selfmodified installmedium of Windows 7? i integrated the SP1 and updatepacks and made a USBinstallmedium. Or do i need an original W7DVD?
If i dunderstand it right i can install W7 with only the SSD connected. Then i connect my 2nd HDD, and folow your steps to enter Audit mode to move my userprofile. Is there a good point when i should do this, like after the first complete boot of W7 or after i installed MBdrivers and all that?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Sep 2013   #692
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Your plan sounds good, install Windows only SSD connected, after first normal boot shutdown the PC, connect the HDD, boot to desktop and reboot to Audit Mode.

As long as your own install media is done using a valid Windows ISO file, it's OK to use it.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Oct 2013   #693
RaviAsks

Win 7 Professional x64
 
 

Exceptional knowledge. U answered a lot of my questions. Thanks a ton.
Please keep up the wonderful work u r already doing....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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03 Oct 2013   #694
RaviAsks

Win 7 Professional x64
 
 

I do have a question. Not sure if this is the right forum to put it.

In my client estate, we have XP now. Users have their profiles in D Drive. We are in the plan of migrating from XP to Win 7. And need to migrate user profiles/data from D:\ in XP to Win 7 C:\ OR D:\(Not decided yet). Will be using USMT.

My question is: Do we need to modify the USMT scripts\command lines for scanstate and loadstate? OR will it by default pick up profiles/data from D in XP and put it in the same place in Win 7?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Oct 2013   #695
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Hi RaviAsks, welcome to the Seven Forums.

USMT (User State Migration Tool) moves the XP user files to Windows 7 user folders, default location at C:\Users\Username. If you want to use the method in this tutorial to relocate the 7 main Users folder, as far as I know you can prepare your Windows 7 first as described in tutorial; the USMT then picks the new location and moves the user files to correct place. This is because using sysprep to relocate Users folder it is kind of "hard coded" in the system, sysprep changes internal Windows environment variables causing the system to see the new location as default.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Oct 2013   #696
Chrisb647100

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

GREAT WORK! This has worked flawlessly for almost a year now. I did follow another forum's posted suggestion of creating a virtual link via the command prompt. The poster stated that some (albeit very, very few) programmers, are still using a coding technique that can sometimes disassociate the program data files from the program. I do not know about that, but I created the virtual links anyway. With that said, I used your system on an earlier installation for a short while before, again with perfect results.

The question I have to post though today is whether or not a Windows 8 upgrade will keep the user folders moved in the new installation and also whether the virtual library links I created will stay linked with a Windows 8 upgrade. Thanks so much for your original post, it was exactly what I needed and I already have found a post on how to do it the same way with Windows 8 if I have to do a clean install.

Thanks so much!

Chris B.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Oct 2013   #697
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

First I have to tell you I have been a real in-place upgrade advocate, trying to correct some wrong thoughts and ideas surrounding an upgrade install. I have posted some general in-place upgrade tips and even a tutorial on how to in-place upgrade from XP to Seven keeping the installed software and user files intact.

That being said, my opinion and approach has changed a bit now with Windows 8. I have myself two in-place upgraded Eight rigs (in-place from Seven), working flawlessly, both kept everything from the underlying installation. With both of them I had to first reverse the relocation of Users and ProgramData, move them back to their original location due Windows 8 setup telling me I could keep nothing if upgraded when the folders were relocated.

This reverse procedure is very simple, just change the values (folder locations) between the FolderLocations tags in your answer file to original and run sysprep again:
Code:
<FolderLocations>
    <ProfilesDirectory>c:\Users</ProfilesDirectory>
    <ProgramData>c:\ProgramData</ProgramData>
</FolderLocations>
Please remember that every time you run sysprep with an answer file you need to reactivate Windows, so keep product key ready.

However, I am wholeheartedly recommending a clean install with Windows 8. In-place upgrade works but as Eight installed from a USB stick takes less than 15 minutes, the time needed to reinstall your programs and applications is in most cases not reason enough to keep every small issue the underlying Seven had.

When relocating folders with sysprep on Windows 8, notice that moving the ProgramData is not recommended. Doing it can seriously screw the Eight! Read more on our sister forums at www.eightforums.com:
Additional reading: Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Oct 2013   #698
Chrisb647100

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

Thanks Kari, more great info! I have a flawlessly working Windows 7 machine with a RAID 0 set of SSDs for OS and program files and a RAID 0 set of platters for documents and other storage. This should be fun, since I moved the user folders and created virtual library links to those same user files. With literally a ton of programs of which I use most of the time, I am reluctant to clean install. I know that there are a lot of issues with an upgrade, or that there can be, but in this one case I will probably upgrade and take my chances. I will post back with any issues I run into and solutions. Thanks again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Oct 2013   #699
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

In that case, be sure to do it as "by the book" as possible:
  • Boot to Audit Mode
  • Stop the WMP Network Sharing service (see the bottom of the last page of this PDF tutorial, it's important!)
  • Edit the answer file to move Users and ProgramData back to original locations as told in my previous post
  • Run the modified answer file with sysprep, changing the /AUDIT switch to /OOBE:
    Code:
    %windir%\sysprep.exe /OOBE /REBOOT /UNATTEND:X:\Name.xml
    (X:\Name.xml is the name and location of your XML answer file)
  • After OOBE (Welcome) boot, in other words when first time on Seven desktop after sysprep, close both firewall and AV programs
  • Run the 8 upgrade install
Should work although RAID is RAID, you can never tell.

Please keep us posted, I am very interested to know how it went.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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