Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Here's my question simply and then the details in case they help to get me an appropriate answer.

Question: How can I completely and permanently delete a user account in Windows 7 so that I can create another one with the same user name without the computer name extension added, eg Jane Smith not Jane Smith.computer name?

The details: I just did a clean install of Windows 7 Professional 32 bit. (My laptop crashed, I reinstalled Vista and restored backup files but things weren't working so I decided to just get Windows 7 since I had to start over anyway).

I used Windows Easy Transfer to save just about everything, even customizing to include a user's appdata from Windows.old which was created when I reinstalled Vista -- not knowing that another windows.old file would be created with the installation of Windows 7. After installing Windows 7, I used Windows Easy Transfer to transfer the user file, appdata, to the new user account which I gave the same name (Jane Smith) in case having a different name would cause problems with reading files or something.

Afterwards, I realized that I did not want ALL of that junk. So, I thought no problem, I'll just delete the user account I just created, nothing lost, and create another one this time transferring only the files I wanted (using the customize option in windows easy transfer).

I wanted to keep the same user name, e.g. Jane Smith, so after I deleted the user account I checked the files, and I didn't see. It was late so I went to bed and the next morning I created a new user with that same name (Jane Smith). The files looked fine if I remember correctly.

Meanwhile, I updated the computer and it restarted a couple times. As I was moving files to the "Jane Smith" user account file, things weren't working as they should. I was actually moving files to the deleted user account and that the current user account was named "Jane Smith.computer name" and that's where the files needed to go.

I don't like this. It's too confusing. I want just "Jane Smith". How can I do this without just changing the user name (which doesn't change it in the file path etc)? I want the first one GONE.

If I can't do this, is it a problem to create an account with another name and still transfer files to it without path or other problems?

I hope this question makes sense and that someone can help me.

Thank you in advance!

share|improve this question
    
So what error you are getting now? Have you deleted the user account and backed up data? –  avirk Apr 10 '12 at 3:36
    
Create a new user account with a different name, log into that account and migrate the old profile to the new one if needed, then delete the old user account, now make a new user account with the name you want, log into it and repeat profile migration. –  Moab Apr 10 '12 at 21:25
add comment

2 Answers 2

up vote 0 down vote accepted

User profile has created a good tutorial for this take a look on this and try the step in given tutorial.

share|improve this answer
    
Thanks, I am studying the info at that link. Will post back if it helps or not. –  TeaJay Apr 10 '12 at 3:55
    
Link-only answers are a no-no on SU, due to possible link rot. Please include pertinent information in your answers. –  Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Apr 10 '12 at 4:07
    
@techie007 Next time I'll I'm on mobile so couldn't make it complete answer. I'm sorry for this because I know the rule of SU. –  avirk Apr 10 '12 at 4:09
    
@avirk PERFECT! Just what I needed! The tutorial you linked to had all the explanations and screen shots that I needed. Thank you to both of you. This was just what I needed and an answer to prayer (really I was praying about this). I am so glad I found this place. A hundred thanks! –  TeaJay Apr 10 '12 at 4:39
    
Glad to help you teajay... –  avirk Apr 10 '12 at 5:32
add comment

This got nothing to do with the username. Whenever the profile cannot be written to, usually due to permission issues, Windows (more to the point the logon provider/winlogon.exe) will automagically create a new folder for you. You could even provoke this. This also seems (or seemed) to happen when a profile hive could not be unloaded or so.

So:

  1. Make sure the permissions are correct (icacls and friends, run as admin)
  2. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList and find the SID of your user (Sysinternals has a tool to find that) and in the subkey with the SID (will usually end in -1000 and higher on non-domain machines) find the value ProfileImagePath and correct it to whatever you want it to point to.
  3. Log off and back in ...

This has been the same principle ever since NT4. Possible there is a GUI method to achieve the same these days ...

share|improve this answer
    
I did everything logged in as admin does that make a difference? –  TeaJay Apr 10 '12 at 3:19
    
It shouldn't as long as the permissions are fixed and the profile in question is not in use (multiple users logged on, that also means non-interactive tasks, such as scheduled ones). –  0xC0000022L Apr 10 '12 at 3:20
    
Yes, everyone was logged off when I transferred the files. I want make sure I understand your answer (thank you for your prompt response). What do you mean by "correct it to whatever I want it to point to?" Sorry to be so slow about this. This is all new to me and I have noone else to help me and I have spent hours reading forums and tutorials just to get this far. –  TeaJay Apr 10 '12 at 3:24
    
@TeaJay: you have located the SID of the user you want to change the profile location for, right? You have also located the proper subkey as described in my post? Then simply see the current value of ProfileImagePath and correct that to point to an (existing or not) directory with the desired name. If the directory does not exist, a fresh profile will be created based on the default profile (i.e. all user-specific settings would be lost). Those settings are stored in ntuser.dat underneath the profile folder specified by ProfileImagePath ... must hit the bed now. More tomorrow. –  0xC0000022L Apr 10 '12 at 3:28
    
Just to clarify (not sure if it matters or not) I have no trouble, that I know of, writing to the profile. "Jane Smith.computer name" works fine. But "Jane Smith" folder still exists under users and I would like it gone and for Jane Smith.computer name to be just "Jane Smith". Would it hurt or change anything if I just deleted the file "Jane Smith"? (I know that you've gone to bed but I thought I'd go ahead and ask in case anyone else is up and answering questions or so you'll see it tomorrow.) Thanks for helping with this. –  TeaJay Apr 10 '12 at 3:43
show 2 more comments

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.