If you are having trouble with a user’s local account profile on a Windows 10 computer you can try and recreate the local user profile. I’ll take you through the process of recreating a local user’s profile in Windows 10 to help troubleshoot a user profile problem.
Backing up the User Profile data in Windows 10
Before we start, we need to ensure that there isn’t any data lost for the user. We do this by renaming their user profile folder.
- Navigate to
- Right click on the username
- Select rename
.oldafter the username. I normally use .old but either will do.
Removing the User Profile Registry Key Windows 10
We will need to remove the relevant user profile registry key for the user we wish to recreate their local profile for.
- Open up
- Navigate to
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SOFTWARE > MICROSOFT > WINDOWS NT > CURRENT VERSION > PROFILELIST
- Now click on each folder and look for the username in the ProfileImagePath Value.
- Right click on the folder and DELETE
- REBOOT the computer
Now when the machine logs in, ask the user to log back in. It will take a lot longer than usual as it will recreate the user profile again. You should see the “HI, we are getting things ready” black screen message.
Checking the user profile has been recreated
- Navigate back to
- You should see that another folder has been created with their
- If you navigate back to the registry location, you’ll see a new registry key has been created.
- Test that this has fixed the original issue and if it has, you’ll have to copy data across from their .back/.old folder into their new profile.
Data to copy across
- Navigate to:
- Copy across the data INSIDE the following folders. Don’t copy the parent folder otherwise it can cause issues.
- Downloads (if required)
- One Drive (if required)
As well as the above I also copy across the files below, as it will enhance user’s experience in this process. I open the apps so that it sets up the folder/file structure then copy the files across.
- Google Chrome Favourites: C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Bookmarks
- Microsoft Outlook Autocomplete: C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook\RoamCache\Streeam_Autocomplete_xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.dat (be sure to check the last “Date Modified” and get the latest file.
- Microsoft OneDrive: C:\users\username\OneDrive\ – Once copied over, I open OneDrive and setup their account with the user and point the directory back to the same location to save the re-download process.
I hope these steps have helped you recreate local user profiles in Windows 10 giving your user the best user experience. Microsoft has a fix for damaged profiles. You can give it a try if the above fail for you. Read more Windows 10 articles.