How to copy Vista user profiles

Posted: 07-27-2008, 02:22 PM
(Posted to unts_passwords


I have Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 and I have tried this before with
other versions of Vista with no success. What I'm trying to do is copy a
user profile by copying everything under C:\Users\Bobby\ and overwriting
everything in C:\Users\Tommy\. This procedure has worked fine in 2000 and XP
if I copy the profile from C:\Documents and Settings\Bobby\ to C:\Documents
and Settings\Tommy\.

I saw a few Google results for this but all I've seen all posts about the
problem itself, but no answers. This is the process that I follow:

1.) Create user Bobby and make all the customizations.

2.) Create user Tommy and logon to that account once.

3.) Reboot.

4.) Logon as third user, Admin.

5.) Delete all files (hidden and system also) under C:\Users\Tommy\.

6.) Copy all files (hidden and system also) from C:\Users\Bobby\ to

After I do that, when I try to logon as Tommy, it starts to logon then just
kicks me back out to the Welcome Screen. I read about this same issue at
The user stated that he was able to get this working by turning off UAC. Is
there any way to get this to work without turning off UAC? Or is there
another way to copy user profiles that would work? Below is an expert from
that link above:

I did this with UAC on. Now, when I try to click on a user that was copied
to, it states welcome as it tries to log on, then states logging off and
goes back to the welcome screen. It does this for each of the two accounts
created. However, if I turn UAC off, they log in just fine. I would like to
keep UAC on, how can I get past this without building each account from
scratch? Thanks.

Thank you,

Mel K, MCSA: M

How to copy Vista user profiles

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