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Roaming profile Question


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I have one user for which I set up a roaming profile, this user is used to log on to 300 PCs, I noticed that at log off PCs update the roaming profile. I need a quick method to prevent local machines from updating roaming profile on server when they log off, this will make life easier.

I also found good practices to include in a script:


Key: SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

Name: DeleteRoamingCache


Value: 1

To prevent logging to EventLog:


Key: SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

Name: EventLog


Value: 0

You will have to stop and restart the spooler from services in the Control Panel but you may wish to reboot.

If you want roaming profiles to not include certain folders, you can exclude them. Excluding internet temporary files, cookies, and outlook files can keep the roaming profile small. To exclude folders:


Key: SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

Name: ExcludeProfileDirs

Type: REG_SZ

Value: Temporary Internet Files;Cookies;Recent;History;Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

But I don't think they solve the roaming profile updating problem when PCs log off.

I don't know if there are other solutions to this problem, or if this behavior for roaming profiles can be changed. The funny thing is that I am using a mandatory profile, I don't understand why PCs update the roaming profile after all.


Edited by oshaker
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  • 4 months later...

(I don't know if months-old "Necro-posting" is acceptable on this forum, but this question was never answered.)

The way to stop a roaming profile from updating the server profile on logout is to use a Microsoft feature referred to as a "Mandatory" profile. On logoff the profile is simply deleted.


Quick answer:

Make a new user, with a new roaming profile path, logon, set up the account preferences the way you want, then logoff, and in the profile directory change the hidden/system file NTUSER.DAT to NTUSER.MAN. Changes now will not write back to the server profile on logoff, and you can set the profile directory permissions to read only so people can't manually edit it. If you need to make more changes to the profile you can make it writable again and rename back to NTUSER.DAT.

It helps to keep old / backup copies of this profile when making changes, in case you screw something up. Also people should not be logging on while editing the profile config, another good reason for backup/offline mandatory profile copies.

Note by default documents and the desktop are stored in the profile, so on logoff all that is deleted too. Should warn people about this, rather letting them "discover" it themselves. You can retain documents and the desktop by using folder redirection group policy in combination with roaming, so that certain specific profile folders are stored elsewhere such as in the user's home directory path.

More details.... most of which I wrote... :)


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I don't know if months-old "Necro-posting" is acceptable on this forum

If you provide an answer than it most certainly is! :)

It is the reviving of posts dating back several years that we try to discourage - mostly because the language has evolved so much that the code in the original posts is often no longer valid or the functionality requested is now available as a native function or within a UDF. ;)


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ArrayMultiColSort ---- Sort arrays on multiple columns
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While a Mandatory Profile is a good solution for all users, it appears from the OP that he has just one user that has a roaming profile, and he does not want that profile to update on the network when the user logs out. For this, I would suggest setting a Group Policy, under Computer Config>>Administrative Templates>>System>>User Profiles. The policy is "Prevent Roaming Profile changes from propagating to the server".

This is especially useful if, as the OP states, the roaming profile is being used on a large number of systems. You would set one machine to be excluded from this policy, so the user can update when he wants, but won't update every time he logs out of a machine.

Edit: Fixed horrible spelling

Edited by JLogan3o13

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