I had a corrupt user profile (let's call it bob) affecting xslx files for Excel on a Windows 7 Pro x64 workstation. I verified that the issue was not present on other profiles on the same machine.

I made a new user, temp. I logged in with the local administrator account and took ownership of bob's profile folder. I then copied everything in this folder except for ntuser.dat, ntuser.dat.log and ntuser.ini to the new user temp's profile folder. I then logged in as temp to make sure that the files were there. They were. My Excel file open issue and icon association was resolved on this user profile.

Next I deleted bob's profile folder after I made a copy of it to C:\temp for restore purposes. I then logged in as domain\bob, and Windows 7 put me into a temporary profile.

Making a local user with the name bob won't work for me here because the security context for that account won't point to the domain.

What do I do now to allow Windows 7 to forget I ever had a domain user called bob? I want to be able to log back in as this user and want the computer treat it like the first time they are logging in and make me a new profile. I will then move profile files over manually to synchronize things.

My user has a standard domain profile and not a roaming one.

I thought this was a relatively straightforward process, but I can't seem to figure out what I do differently when I am dealing with domain level accounts.

2 Answers 2

  1. Rename the user's profile folder to Bob.old

  2. Logged in as an admin, go to Control Panel → User Accounts → Manage User Accounts. Domain accounts show there after an initial login.

  3. Delete the account for Bob

  4. Open regedit and make sure that the user is no longer in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList. Delete it if present, even if it is followed by ".bak".

Then you can login as bob to recreate the local user profile, then copy your user data into it.

Source: Deleting a Local User Profile - Not as easy as one Might Assume

  • Ah, I did not know you could manage domain accounts from the control panel user account. I'll give this a shot.
    – TWood
    Nov 29, 2012 at 18:25
  • just don't forget to check the registry. the issue is that when a user profile directory is not found, the profilelist key for that account is backed up by appending a .bak to the key name. while this bak key exists, you will not be able to associate the user with a new profile. Nov 29, 2012 at 19:06
  • yeah I already restored my deleted profile folder and then chopped the bak suffix off of the profilelist key so that I could at least boot back in under the account I broke. I just deleted and rebooted so hopefully it is all downhill from here.
    – TWood
    Nov 29, 2012 at 19:19
  • I was able to move all my files over to the new profile without problems. Thanks for your assistance Frank Thomas. I ended up having to manually delete the profilelist entry even though i removed the user using the control panel manage user snap-in. The strange thing is that my user re-created okay but when I go back to the "manage user accounts" list my user didn't get added back when the new account was made. Do I need to manually add it? I don't want to end up later not being able to use easy transfer or something of the sort because of that missing entry.
    – TWood
    Nov 29, 2012 at 19:57
  • I wouldn't bother if it doesn't come up in users.cpl. who knows, may take a few reboots. I've been lead to believe that if you administer a user from that interface it doesn;t leave registry traces behind, but tbh, I haven't had to deal with this issue since Vista so it may have changed a little. Glad you got it working. Nov 29, 2012 at 20:26

Side note WinXP would easily allow you to rename a profile folder example bob.old and would automatically create a new profile folder bob. You can then move user files around at will. This easily solved many simple malware that is profile specific.

Now in Win7 the preferred methods per Microsoft is to use the account management to blow away that folder. Thus you need to first manually copy the user profile folder first. Rather in XP you can create a new one on the fly and can even revert back on the fly undo the rename. This was all great quick troubleshooting. But no more.

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