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How to Configure a Roaming User Profile

Updated: March 1, 2002

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

You can configure a roaming profile by using the following procedure.

To configure a roaming profile for users:

  1. Create a folder on the server where user profiles will be stored. This will be the top-level folder that contains all the individual user profiles.

  2. Configure the folder as a shared folder, and give all users Full Control permissions.

  3. Open the Active Directory Users and Computers snap-in and navigate to the individuals User object.

  4. Right-click the user's name and click Properties on the shortcut menu.

  5. Click the Profile tab.

  6. For the Profile Path, type the path to the network share where the user profile is to be stored. For example, for a user whose network name is JDoe, the following path, \\NetworkShare\Profiles\%username%, would create a directory called JDoe in the Profiles share on the server used to store user profiles.

You can also populate the profile path by using an Active Directory Scripting Interface (ADSI) script. ADSI provides a single set of interfaces for managing network resources. Administrators can combine ADSI with Visual Basic Scripting Edition (VbScript) or Jscript scripts to manage resources in the directory service such as users, services, and so on.

To learn about ADSI and ADSI scripts, see the Microsoft Platform SDK.

User Profiles Troubleshooting

The first troubleshooting step should be to examine the Application event log on the client computer, and determine the error.

If this is a roaming profile, be sure to check for the correct permissions (see Security Considerations when Configuring Roaming User Profiles for the required permissions) - one of the most common causes of roaming user profile errors is incorrect permissions on the profile share.

In addition to logging events in the Application Event log, User Profiles can provide a detailed log to aid troubleshooting. To create a detailed log file for user profiles:

  1. Start regedit and locate the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\WindowsNT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

  2. Create a new value called UserEnvDebugLevel as a REG_DWORD, and set the value to 30002 in hexadecimal format.

The log file can be found at: %windir%\debug\usermode\userenv.log

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