Multiple users on one PC

  1. Posts : 3

    Multiple users on one PC

    Hello everyone,
    Might be a very basic thing, but I can't get it to work.
    I have a "Family" PC with few Users, one Admin user and 2 standard users (child and guest). All local users,
    I struggle with the standard users accounts. I do not want to give them admin privileges but want them to have their own desktops/ icons/ files there
    They can't customize anything apart from wallpaper, desktop icons are locked and they can't delete anything, whatever they add shown in admin account and vice versa, if I add file to Admin user desktop it shows up in standard user desktop.
    They cant use stardock fences app, it opens but customization is as per Admin account and they can't change anything, everything is locked.
    What can I do to change this? I want them to have their own desktops and Google drive folders, but I also want them to be unable to install stuff themselves.
    Many thanks in advance for any help
      My Computer

  2. Posts : 38,252
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)

    Hi, if I create a std account and log in, I'm presented with
    Multiple users on one PC-snap-2022-08-31-13.15.22.png
    which would appear to allow me to set up Fences as I wish.

    if I add file to Admin user desktop it shows up in standard user desktop.
    That's not my experience.

    Do you have synching set up between the accounts? Are both MS accounts or local ones?
      My Computers

  3. Posts : 3
    Thread Starter

    All are local accounts.
    User 1 - with admin privileges,
    User 2 - standard user
    I have purchased two copies one for me one for my child, thinking this might be issue.
    on "User 1" account Fences work as expected.
    on "User 2" account it does not allow any interaction, icons can't be dragged in to existing fences or added in any other way, as well as new fences can't be created.
    As for the desktop icons overall this is similar and very frustrating. let me give you and example
    Lets say "User 1" creates new document and saves it in desktop.
    Then we switch users. Log out "User 1" and "User 2" logs in to his account. The document created by "User 1" appears in "User 2" desktop.
    I think I need to reinstall the OS to solve this as I have not experienced this before and do not know what might be the cause for such a strange behaviour.
      My Computer

  4. Posts : 38,252
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)

    Thank you for your reply.

    Why not delete User 2, and then create a new account?
      My Computers

  5. 3nd
    Posts : 561
    windows 10 home single language 64 bit / 21H2

    i had similar questions about accounts
    maintenance and multiple user accounts
    it's confusing , for me at least
    good luck
      My Computer

  6. Posts : 11,247
    Windows / Linux : Arch Linux

    Hi folks



    If you have enough disk space why not assign each user a separate windows system via separate native vhdx files. That way you can just delete / add user accounts quite simply. A base windows install with a few apps can run in as little as 24 GB , and can have different apps, languages etc depending on the user. The windows systems do not even need to be located on the same disk and the whole kybosh can be booted from an external usb/ ssd device too if you want.


    My method (actually not mine - it's bog standard Windows !!) is better as you don't need any of this stuff to manage desktop, and users accounts are isolated and separate from each other since they are different windows systems on a vhdx disk. If users don't have access to the disk containing the other vhdx files they can't break it or get access to data they shouldn't have.

    Simply create ONE only single efi partition (this will be the default disk), then vhdx files for your windows installs (diskpart select file xxxx, create vdisk, attach etc etc)

    these vdisks when attached as "disks" (note no VM or HYPER-V is required, this works with Windows Home too) should be simply single non efi partitions formatted ntfs

    Install a system to one vhdx file (dism /Apply-Image is the simplest way of doing this but any install method you like should work -- remember to attach the virtual disk first as a Disk or windows won't be able to find a disk in setup.exe. That's why I prefer using the dism.exe method.

    Now install the boot loader -- in diskpart or command line assign a letter to the efi partition and now run bcdboot to it from the installed windows directory windows/system32.

    Once this is done you can clone the system to other vhdx files but remember you need to add the boot loader again for each system you create.

    At boot you will then be presented with the standard blue W10/W11 windows multiboot screen. Change the names to meaningful ones such as users who will use these.

    The multi boot menu looks like this

    Multiple users on one PC-multios.png

    Obviously not suitable if you have 20 users but works a treat for say 3 to 6

    Also a great way of testing W11 on a W10 computer without having to back up / restore or mess about with Virtual machines, especially if done from an external device which now works in the latest releases of W10 and W11.

    Since you are creating multiple installs on the SAME hardware the digital activation will remain activated - the only change is the user account. This offers absolutely the most flexibility with users being able to do only what privileges you give them when you set the system up. If somebody hoses up Windows then it's only their install which can be easily fixed again.

    The only caveat is that the real disk your "Virtual" vhdx file is on (windows will be on "C" but the "Host" physical disk might be seen as "D" - so protect the "D" drive for non admin users.

      My Computer


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