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If I go to User Accounts in the Control Panel, there is an option to Change your account name, but this only changes the display name, not the internal name of the account used for networking or in the file system. Is there a way to do this without creating a new account an migrating the settings?

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4 Answers

Right click on My Computer and select Manage to open the Computer Management Window.

In the tree, select Local Users and Groups.

In that view you can change the account name simply by right-clicking on the relevant account and selecting Rename.

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Just changing the name will make a cosmetic change only and not affect the underlying files/folders in the profile. You have to make a whole new user account named the way you want. Then you can copy your old profile to the new one. Note that the user account for your daily work should be a Standard account, not Administrator. Here are instructions for doing that (assumes you don't already have an extra administrative account made and are using a single administrative account for your daily work):

  1. From an account with administrative privileges, go to Control Panel>User Accounts and create the new Standard user account named the way you want and at least one extra Administrator account. Call the latter "CompAdmin" or "Tech" or the like.
  2. Log into the new Standard user account once so the profile files/folders are created and then log into CompAdmin.
  3. Now go to Control Panel>System>Advanced>User Profiles>Settings
  4. You will see where you can copy user accounts. Copy the old account to the new one from there. Use the Browse to select your new account (C:\Users\newaccount).
  5. Log into the new correctly named account and make sure all your stuff is there and that it works the way you want. When you are satisfied, you can log out and into CompAdmin and delete the old user account from Control Panel>User Accounts if you want.

If you wish to log into your new, corrected account automatically, do this:

Start Orb>Search box>type: netplwiz [enter] Click on Continue (or supply an administrator's password) when prompted by UAC

Uncheck the option "Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer". Select a user account to automatically log on by clicking on the desired account to highlight it and then hit OK. Enter the correct password for that user account (if there is one) when prompted. Leave it blank if there is no password (null).

Let me know if you want any more details about this. Of course you don't have to copy the old, incorrectly named account if you don't want to. You can just copy over the data using Windows Explorer.

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I don't think so. I have had to do the same thing before and I've never been able to change the profile name. C:\Users\Username will never change. You'll need to backup the profile data (AppData, Documents), delete the old profile and create a new one.

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It looks like the answer is no, not through the menu - but you can manually change the values by editing the registry values described in this KB article.

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