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Creating a Mandatory User Profile

Updated: September 22, 2010

Applies To: Windows 7

The first step to creating a mandatory user profile is to create a default user profile. The section titled Configuring Standard User Accounts, describes how to create a default user profile. You must create a folder for the mandatory user profile and configure its permissions so that everyone can access it. Then you copy the default user profile to the mandatory user profile folder.

Windows 7 recognizes a mandatory user profile that is based on the name of the registry hive file. Each user profile contains a registry hive file named Ntuser.dat, which contains the user’s registry settings. Renaming it to Ntuser.man causes Windows 7 to make the user profile mandatory.

To create a mandatory user profile

  1. Copy the default user profile that you created in Configuring Standard User Accounts to C:\Users on the shared computer.

  2. Rename the folder Mandatory.v2. (The root part of the file name can be anything you like, but the folder name must end with “.v2” to identify it as a Windows 7 user profile folder.)

  3. Use the following procedure to rename Ntuser.dat to Ntuser.man:

    1. Open C:\Users\Mandatory.v2 in Windows Explorer.

    2. In Windows Explorer, click Organize, and then click Folder and search options.

    3. On the View tab, select the Show hidden files and folders check box, clear the Hide protected operating system files check box, click Yes to confirm that you want to show operating system files, and then click OK to save your changes.

    4. Rename Ntuser.dat to Ntuser.man. Figure 3 shows what this should look like in Windows Explorer with hidden files showing.

    Mandatory user profile

    Figure 3  Preparing a mandatory user profile

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