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  1.    11 Feb 2016 #1
    Join Date : Jan 2016
    Posts : 9
    windows 10

    Why does windows think it's installed on a non-existent directory?


    I am running Windows 10 Pro 64 bit.
    (upgraded from windows 7 ultimate 64 bit)

    I was annoyed that it chose a username that I didn't like so I updated the registry & so forth to change it and it worked fine... the only thing that was goofy after is that the start menu and search wouldn't work. I tried the common fixes and that didn't work. After running scannow I found that it thought there was duplicate permissions on files causing an issue. I fixed that re-specifying ownership & running restore health command. But it didn't resolve the start/search issue. I can't add another user or anything because that 'startup' (I forget what it's called) that controls that won't run.

    So, I thought I would run a startup repair .. .when I did that, it failed but it showed me something bizarre. It specified my windows directory as K:/WINDOWS!!! wtf? My K drive is a DVD burner so obviously there are no files stored there. I looked at the log file (in c directory) and it also specified K. That's obviously the root of the problem. I also noticed things like when I installed a font by right clicking and choosing install it didn't actually send to C. It's like it's sending things into an abyss thinking K is the right location. Also, I use team viewer to access various devices remotely and it thinks my C drive is less that 10% available but I actually have a lot more space - it must be looking at this K:\ path as well.

    So... my question is, is there somewhere in the registry where I can tell windows no you're on C drive so that thinks can point back to the right place again, run my startup repair and go on with life?? Has anyone else ever experienced this?

    I'm hoping there is a way to restore this without reinstalling windows. I'd rather not reinstall all my software if I don't have to. I know how to do that and I'm willing but I'd like to keep it as a last resort if possible.

    Thank you
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    11 Feb 2016 #2
    Join Date : Feb 2014
    Posts : 9,134
    Windows 10 Professional

    Hi @marteeny, welcome to tenforums.com!
    Sounds like you may have dumped your default user profile.
    I'd be interested to know what Registry changes you made.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  3.    11 Feb 2016 #3
    Join Date : Jan 2016
    West Virginia
    Posts : 127
    Windows 10 Pro

    Never tried renaming a profile in 10 but in 7 its pretty always a bad idea.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    11 Feb 2016 #4
    Join Date : Jan 2016
    Posts : 9
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin View Post
    Hi @marteeny, welcome to tenforums.com!
    Sounds like you may have dumped your default user profile.
    I'd be interested to know what Registry changes you made.
    Hi thank you. Perhaps that's what happened. I knew I was taking a risk when I did it. I've got everything backed up and able to start over if I have to but wanted to try it

    The changes I did are basically what's here
    http://www.thewindowsclub.com/user-account-name-change. See the note in comments below this is the way I did it: It can actually be done on windows 10. You do these steps (the registry edit thing) and then you press windows key+R, you write "msconfig". There you go into the "Boot" section and you tick "Safe Boot". After that restart the computer. It will take some time but when it finishes you will be in a temporary account. Now go into C->Users and rename the folder to the new username(THE SAME ONE YOU WROTE INTO THE REGISTRY!!). Now win key+R, msconfig, boot and untick safe boot. Restart your computer and it will work fine. I did it this way and it works perfectly.

    Later I tried these fixes. http://home.bt.com/tech-gadgets/computing/has-your-windows-10-start-menu-stopped-working-here-are-four-ways-to-fix-it-11364000314532


    Any way to recover from this or do I need to suck it up and reinstall the os?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    11 Feb 2016 #5
    Join Date : Feb 2014
    Posts : 9,134
    Windows 10 Professional

    Quote Originally Posted by marteeny View Post
    Hi thank you. Perhaps that's what happened. I knew I was taking a risk when I did it. I've got everything backed up and able to start over if I have to but wanted to try it

    The changes I did are basically what's here
    http://www.thewindowsclub.com/user-account-name-change. See the note in comments below this is the way I did it: It can actually be done on windows 10. You do these steps (the registry edit thing) and then you press windows key+R, you write "msconfig". There you go into the "Boot" section and you tick "Safe Boot". After that restart the computer. It will take some time but when it finishes you will be in a temporary account. Now go into C->Users and rename the folder to the new username(THE SAME ONE YOU WROTE INTO THE REGISTRY!!). Now win key+R, msconfig, boot and untick safe boot. Restart your computer and it will work fine. I did it this way and it works perfectly.

    Later I tried these fixes. Has your Windows 10 Start menu stopped working? Here are four ways to fix it - BT


    Any way to recover from this or do I need to suck it up and reinstall the os?
    If you're not 'miles down the road', I'd just re-install, but with a local account with a generic user name first, then switch to an MS account later, that way your Users-user folder will retain the generic moniker.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  6.    12 Feb 2016 #6
    Join Date : Jan 2016
    Posts : 9
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin View Post
    If you're not 'miles down the road', I'd just re-install, but with a local account with a generic user name first, then switch to an MS account later, that way your Users-user folder will retain the generic moniker.
    I can't create a new account. When I go into user accounts and click the button to add a new user nothing happens. Another issue I created doing all of this.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    12 Feb 2016 #7
    Join Date : Feb 2014
    Posts : 9,134
    Windows 10 Professional

    Quote Originally Posted by marteeny View Post
    I can't create a new account. When I go into user accounts and click the button to add a new user nothing happens. Another issue I created doing all of this.
    Clean install.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  8.    12 Feb 2016 #8
    Join Date : Jan 2016
    Posts : 9
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    yeah figured that was going to be the case. Oh well
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    12 Feb 2016 #9
    Join Date : Jan 2015
    Posts : 647

    I take it you did not have a full-image of the OS partition before the experimentation? Hey, it takes courage to tackle Windows like you did - you did learn a lot of positives along with the drawbacks. Ok, now, reinstall. Then, using something like Macrium Reflect, free or fee, make at least one if not two full-images of your OS partition onto at least one if not two usb external hard-drives.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  10.    12 Feb 2016 #10
    Join Date : Jan 2016
    Posts : 9
    windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by RolandJS View Post
    I take it you did not have a full-image of the OS partition before the experimentation? Hey, it takes courage to tackle Windows like you did - you did learn a lot of positives along with the drawbacks. Ok, now, reinstall. Then, using something like Macrium Reflect, free or fee, make at least one if not two full-images of your OS partition onto at least one if not two usb external hard-drives.
    Thanks. Yeah I knew what I was getting into. I could tell from the stuff I was researching that attempting this on win 10 was extremely risky .. but I already have everything backed up from all my drives (I have several) and a copy of windows.old saved on secondary drive from when I first upgraded so I'm good on that. I also created a recovery point that I thought I could use to avoid reinstalling but since I dumped my profile it doesn't see that it exists lol.

    I'm just triple-checking everything and copying some newly created files before I reinstall
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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