Move Users Folder Location in Windows 10  

  1. Posts : 3
    windows 10 pro

    Mollyman said:
    Thanks for your quick reply.
    You are the expert, so you should be right but I'm almost sure I do everything like you explain. The only thing I changed is the "net user Administrator /active:yes" command. It doesn't works and I finaly had to replaced "Administrator" by "Administrateur" (the French translation of Administrator).
    But as you know, the most common problem in software modification is located between the chair and the computer so I accept my mistake.
    I followed an other tutorial to popup command prompt in session connection panel and then create a new administrator account, it works but it doesn't seems to be a clean solution.
    I don't have any backup so I will make a new clean install and follow the 1st method of you tutorial and I hope all will works.

    Thanks anyway! :)
    Thanks everybody for all the help. I really cannot understand why Microsoft does not propose as a standard configuration and as part of the standard installation of Windows 10 to specify User data location to another drive. With more and more systems moving to SSD, it should become the default practice because not doing so should reduce your SSD's life time considerably, shouldn't it?

    But I have to say that I got into exactly the same issue as what Mollyman describes, and, incidentally, also had to change the recipe described in the tutorial by changing Administrator to Administrateur, because I am also French.
    The other change I made is based on the remark you made in comment #757 on page 76 that the bootable image with a wim file is not needed anymore, where you advise to remove the line defining the wim file path from the unattended XML answer file. Is it why it did not work as advertised in the tutorial? I tried really hard to get an ISO image with the wim file in it, and tried all the methods I saw described in 10forums but none of them worked for me. I always end up with an ESD file instead. I originally got windows 10 pro by upgrading from window 8.1 pro.

    Mollyman, would you care to share the pointer to the other tutorial on how to get the admin command prompt at boot time from bootable USB media? I need to do the same as you, but have not yet located this. At this point, I am still unable to log back into my system in order to reactivate the deactivated accounts.

    Thanks again!

    Last edited by lmnca; 31 Aug 2016 at 08:02.
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  2. Posts : 3
    windows 10 pro

    From what I see when popping up command prompt, the drive letters are all upside down. My original windows drive is now at f:, and the drive where I have moved the users folder has also moved to a different letter. The admin prompt gets me at letter x: and I do not even know which of my original disks it corresponds to. I am now proceeding to reinitialize the computer as everything else I tried failed.
    As you can probably tell, I am utterly confused. Part of it is that the layout of boot option windows I am seeing do not correspond to what I see in the tutorials, and also, everything needs to get translated to French.
      My Computer

  3. Posts : 3
    windows 10 pro

    Ok, I was finally able to fix it by following the instructions I found there:
    How to Create Administrator Account on Windows 10 When Can't Sign in
    explaining how to create a new administrator account when you messed up your user permissions like I did. I did not even have to create the new account, getting the prompt with my actual system disk properly mounted allowed me to simply reactivate the deactivated accounts as explained in Kari's tutorial.

    There are a couple of weird things though:
    1) Even though it did free up some space on the system SSD, part of it was taken back by some directories which seem to have been created through my various attempts at upgrading or reinitializing the win 10 install. I now have a directory called ESD (3.23G), Windows.old (16.5G) and Windows10Upgrade (15.5 Mo) which did not use to exist. It would be nice to know which of these I can now get rid of on the SSD disk.
    2) The system SSD disk does not contain the original "Utilisateur" directory anymore. But it does contain a "Users" directory which contains only the AppData folder and nothing else. I do not remember whether that folder was already there before I started the migration or not. Is it an unwanted leftover and is it safe to remove it?

    By the way, I am now remembering that French versions of windows name the users folder "Utilisateurs", which is the French translation. Could it have been what confused the hell out of it when I applied Kari's tutorial? Or maybe the combination of that and the presence of a folder called Users which somehow crept in at some point?

    To summarize, what I ended up doing to make it work was the following:
    1. did not have to create the ISO media with wim file. Could not figure out a way to make that happen.[
    2. when creating the answer XML file, I simply removed the line with:

    <cpi:offlineImage cpi:source="wim:[COLOR=#ff0000]E:\sources\install.wim[/COLOR]#[COLOR=#ff0000]Windows 10 Pro[/COLOR]" xmlns:cpi="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:cpi" />
    from the answer file.
    1. When I rebooted, I did not get prompted to define a new user contrary to what is described in the tutorial. Still unexplained.
    2. I applied the method advertised above to get admin command prompt from login page and just had to reactivate the previsously deactivated user accounts.


      My Computer

  4. Posts : 18
    Windows 10 Pro


    I cannot find an install.wim anywhere. I have a recovery drive that I created (Windows Pro came installed on my new computer.)
      My Computer

  5. Posts : 4
    Windows 10 Pro

    Mycenius said:
    Just confirming I have the exact same issue as Djino also (i.e. no start menu for new user profiles). I installed a copy of Windows 10 Pro (x64) to a new Samsung SSD Drive last week and followed Kari's instructions to the letter (except I did not bother with making a back-up disk image) - my second drive (a Seagate 2TB SATA) for the users was formatted clean prior to commencing process. Any new users I create do not have start menu.
    Further to my earlier posts I believe I have resolved my issue with the start menus - to do so I did the following:

    1. Completely reinstalled Windows 10 again from scratch, and

    2. Having identified that my ESD Windows 10 USB Installation Drive had no install.wim file (but did have install.esd), I changed the appropriate line in the relocate.xml file as follows:

    <cpi:offlineImage cpi:source="esd:E:\sources\install.esd#Windows 10 Pro" xmlns:cpi="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:cpi" />
    Whether simply reinstalling fixed it or not, or whether the above code change did I don't know...

    It has again created the odd defaultuser0 user directory sometime after I initially logged in the first time, that is missing items that are in the 'Default' user directory... But I now have 4 operational user logons all with functional windows start menus, so happy for now...


    ...and thanks again Kari for the original tutorial.
      My Computer

  6. Posts : 197
    Windows 10 Enterprise LTSB N 1607 x64

    This doesn't work on latest 10 Enterprise Insider Preview. I did a clean install. The guide was followed to the letter. I copied and pasted into Notepad verbatim, only editing the parts specified. All drive letters are correct. My ultrabook doesn't have an optical drive. Windows install files (install.wim) is located on a flash drive. Perhaps this has something to do with me installing Windows into a VHD. After sysprep processing, my computer reboots and I get a white box that says "Install Windows" in upper left, a white X inside a red circle, and the message "Windows could not complete the installation. To install Windows on this computer, restart the installation".

    Edit: I think I know where the problem is. It's no issue for me to boot Windows from a VHD, been doing it for awhile, works fine. I created a 2nd VHD, gave it a Z drive letter, intending to use this as my Users. I think what happened is that Windows didn't mount that VHD After rebooting. So I'm going to create a single VHD with 2 partitions inside it, one for Windows and the other for Users. I'll try this again tonight. Can I safely upgrade to newer Insider Preview builds, or do I need to move Users back to C drive first?
    Last edited by AnonVendetta; 04 Sep 2016 at 19:54.
      My Computer

  7. Posts : 197
    Windows 10 Enterprise LTSB N 1607 x64

    I just redid everything a 2nd time, works like a charm.

    However I did delete the C:\Documents and Settings folders. It's really just an NTFS junction that points to C:\Users. It mainly exists for legacy compatibility purposes for programs that are designed for XP. So I created a junction by the same folder name that points to Z:\Users. I also created a junction in the root of C drive that points from C:\Users to Z:\Users. Just in case something wants to try and save things in C:\Users, they will get redirected seamlessly to Z instead.
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  8. Posts : 1
    Windows 10 Pro

    Hi, I've previously used junctions/symlinks to move my Users folder but was recommended to look at this method. Are there any advantages/disadvantages to this over a symlink of C:\Users\[Username] --> D:\Users[Username] ?

    Also I'm planning on doing a fresh install of Windows 10, will my D:\Users\[Username] folder being overwritten/any data lost when I use this method?
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  9. Posts : 1
    Windows 10 Home 10.0.14393

    Install media - Could you please confirm instruction in #757, p76

    Dear Kari,

    I have read all 76 pages of the thread today. I think I have picked up on a few of the "recurring themes", and it is clear you have the patience of a saint. I have not yet implemented the sysprep procedure to move C:\users and this is because of your post #757 on p76. I came across it yesterday and thought: "This seems a bit odd; it is counter to Kari's 'follow the instructions to the letter' advice". So I read through the thread, and it seems that #757 is the first reference to omitting the line in the answer file with the reference to the install.wim.

    Could you please confirm:

    Is the install.wim file now needed or not?

    Sincerely (and with some trepidation!),
      My Computer

  10. Posts : 197
    Windows 10 Enterprise LTSB N 1607 x64

    @Deanontca: I just installed 10 Enterprise anniversary update 1607 from VLSC/MSDN. I can confirm that, as Kari has already stated, a disc/USB isnt needed. Just remove the lines he specified, it will work.
      My Computer


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