Roaming profile back to local

Discussion in 'Networking & Security' started by Mister Natural, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. Mister Natural

    Mister Natural 2[H]4U

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    After completing an AD upgrade to 2008r2 I've had my fill of roaming profiles. I want to change all users back so that their profile is on their pc. I'd like to hear from anyone that has done this and what worked for them. Of course ideally I'd like this to occur with the user affected as little as possible. Most users are still winxp but some win7 machines too. Already read lots of suggestions online, but wondering if anyone out there has done it and what worked.
     
  2. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment Stay [H]ard

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    Why?

    how do you plan to backup each desktop and important files going forth?

    i have 47 systems here with 80 something users all on roaming profiles and things have been sooth for 2 years now, i have only had 2 system i beleive who's profiles didnt update properly i had to fix.
     
  3. /usr/home

    /usr/home [H]ardness Supreme

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    Roaming profiles are nice when they work. When they break, and they usually like to eventually, they are a PITA. Why no redirect their My Documents to a mapped drive on the server? Just tell them that stuff on the Desktop does NOT get backed up and they are SOL if their computer dies. That's what we do for ~ 2000 users. We remind them every time we see files on their desktop.
     
  4. PanzerBoxb

    PanzerBoxb 2[H]4U

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    I am with /usr/home on this one. Folder redirection is a much better solution than roaming profiles. Now, as far as your predicament is concerned, I have never done a migration from roaming profiles but Microsoft does have a KB that mentions it.
     
  5. Mister Natural

    Mister Natural 2[H]4U

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    To say migrating roaming profiles from server 2003 to server 2008 is a major pain in the ass is putting it lightly. If I didn't have that to deal with the upgrade would have been fairly painless. 90% of the troubles and hassles I've had to deal with are from roaming profiles. I have more important things to do than deal with a users personal settings and it's taken up way too much of my time. I am using folder redirection to server for each users documents folder.

    If anyone has personally done this I'd appreciate some feedback. Otherwise I'll be experimenting on my own.
     
  6. gimp

    gimp Pound Me Too

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    you could use something like ForensiT User Profile Wizard that will allow you to "convert" a roaming profile to a local profile on the machine itself; so that after you remove the roaming profile info from the users AD acct, it will load up the existing profile.
     
  7. Exavior

    Exavior [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I had one user with a roaming profile and converted it back to local.

    I was thinking i just switched their account in the domain controller from being roaming to local and it stopped roaming and what was already on the computer turned into their local account. Don't recall doing anything special.
     
  8. Mister Natural

    Mister Natural 2[H]4U

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    It does appear to be that simple. I'm testing a couple logins. I removed the profile path setting on my user account, renamed my profile on the server to be sure it wasn't loading and everything loads with no change. A group policy setting I've enabled is "only use local profiles" which probably insured no disruption of personal settings. Probably should be sure that policy is loaded on the pc before making the change. Verified change took place in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList\(my profile). It now points to my pc and not server profile share. I'll continue to experiment.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012
  9. Mister Natural

    Mister Natural 2[H]4U

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    OK so I just about got this wrapped up. I'm going to document here what it took because I could find little to no information on how to completely get this done. This might just be an [H] exclusive because I could not find any step by step instructions on this. Removing the profile path from the user properties is only the start. It may stop the profile from roaming, but users will still need to access their profile share on the server or else things will not be normal for them.

    So a rather abbreviated procedure but this is what it took for me to completely change a roaming user profile to a local profile from a W2008r2 server to Win7 and WinXP pc's.

    Open active directory users and computers, right click on each user and select properties. Click profile tab and remove the profile path reference.

    GPEDIT – computer config/policies/adm templates/system/user profiles
    Enable – “Only use local profiles” and “Prevent roaming profile changes from propagating to server”.

    User configuration/policies/windows settings/ folder redirection

    Right click/properties on Application Data, Desktop and Start Menu

    Target = redirect to the local userprofile location
    Settings Tab = apply to windows 2000, xp, etc.
    Policy removal – redirect folder back to user profile location when policy is removed.

    Reboot pc in question and log in user once or twice to be sure new policy is loaded.

    Make sure user is logged off network.

    Copy Desktop and application data folder from user profile on server to the proper location for the user on pc. You can either do a robocopy or in my case I used a windows 7 machine and the gui. In folder options make sure hide system files is unchecked. Using a win7 machine allows the copy process to do a merge and prompts for action for any conflict.

    Everything else is already moved with the settings shown above. The only thing you need to copy is the desktop and the application data folder.

    Profile will now be local on the pc and users will need to be advised that any files saved to desktop will not be backed up.

    :cool:
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2012
  10. FRAGMAN BOB

    FRAGMAN BOB Limp Gawd

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    Thanks for documenting this. i'm looking to do this too. We have ~90 users still with roaming profiles with all the rest utilizing home directories. We are going to transition their roaming profile to local.
     
  11. RiDDLeRThC

    RiDDLeRThC 2[H]4U

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    I use folder redirection. Desktop, My Docs, Favorites. I may add AppData at some point but Adobe freaked out when I did that at my last job so I've avoided it for now.
     
  12. Mister Natural

    Mister Natural 2[H]4U

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    For the record, windows 7 stores application data differently than windows xp machines. In windows 7 under the user directory, each user has an application data folder. Inside that there are 3 directories.

    Roaming contains personal preferences. If you use outlook you definitely want the outlook.nk2 file for older office versions. Otherwise folks will bitch up a storm when their autocomplete user list doesn't work.

    Local contains stuff like pst files possibly depending on how it is configured.

    Roaming = Documents and settings\username\application data on Windows XP
    Local = Documents and settings\local settings\application data on Windows XP
    Local low = not important
     
  13. Eickst

    Eickst [H]ard|Gawd

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    Adobe doesn't like unc paths. So just map their home folder to X: and change the user shell folders to match the drive instead of \\server\share

    We use roaming profiles in conjunction with folder redirection and it works great. Computer upgrades are a breeze, just turn it off plug in a new one and they are done. Everything including desktop is backed up. We couple it with quotas and file screens on the file servers so they can't save music, and if they find away around the screen they have a limited amount of space so they can't bog down the server.
     
  14. RiDDLeRThC

    RiDDLeRThC 2[H]4U

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    Yeah I think thats what I'm going to do. Roaming/Folder Redirect seems to be the best. It should keep roaming profile sizes smallish and keep apps happy.
     
  15. Eickst

    Eickst [H]ard|Gawd

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    Largest roaming profile folder I have seen is approx 45MB. That's if you redirect all other folders.
     
  16. Mister Natural

    Mister Natural 2[H]4U

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    One big thing that used to bug the crap out of me with roaming profiles is if you updated the server and rebooted it without closing down all user pc's, their desktop icons would get re-arranged. This is a big pain in the ass if the user has a lot of desktop icons and is high up in the chain of command. I used to have to come in Sundays to shut down all users, update the server and reboot. Now I don't have to come in on weekends anymore. Update the server and reboot early morning before users are in and it's done.

    What really caused me to change was Windows 7 laptop users. I never could get roaming profiles to work on Windows 7 laptops.
     
  17. thedocta45

    thedocta45 [H]ard|Gawd

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    I did this but users managed to save things in locations other than those, and blame me when the computer crashes.

    If you fix it they will break it.
     
  18. RiDDLeRThC

    RiDDLeRThC 2[H]4U

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    Well I would like to say that never happens but it does.

    Our users know where to save and where not to save. They are good at taking responsibility for misplaced files.
     
  19. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment Stay [H]ard

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    this is why you write policies for employee's so you're not liable for their stupidity