A few days ago I turned my computer on and to my surprise I had a temporary profile. All my icons were gone along with my personal settings. I also thought I lost all or my data. Luckily it was all there in the “C:/Users/Profile_Name” directory. I just could not log into it. So I’ll show you the steps that I took to resolve the issue and hopefully help someone else out there. Just a side note this is for Windows 7 but possible for Window Vista and Windows 8. As always be sure to backup your data, setting, and anything we’re about to touch.
To back up your data I suggest using a cloud service or getting a portable hard drive. Cloud service is generally cheaper in the short run and if you don’t have over 2-7GBs of data it can be free. External hard drives are great for storage as well. Since you can carry them around so first back up your important data either by uploading it to a cloud service such as Skydrive or backing it up onto a external storage device. After that we’re going to mess with the registry a bit so of course we need to back it up as well.
To back up the registry you need to get to the registry editor known as Regedit. To get to it is easy, click the start button and type in the box “regedit” and then press enter.
As seen in the image. First thing you’re going to want to do is click on “File” at the top left of the screen. Go down until you find the option “Export” then click it. This will open a little window where you can choose where to save the file and what to call it. I generally give my back ups a name and then a date that follows it. After you have done that time to mess with the registry.
On the left of the regedit console you should see a “Computer” node with a series of other folders under it. You’re going to want to follow this path, “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList”
In the profile list you should see a few entries with S-I-5 (AKA SID). You should see two entries S-I-5 with a lot of numbers and letters behind it. Two of them should match except for the last four characters. The one which you want is .bak Rename the other one whatever you wish and for the .bak just remove the .bak. After that reset your PC and if you’re lucky you’ll be using you’re profile! If not continue reading.
If you’re still reading you’re going to have to create a new profile, transfer your data over, and delete the old profile. This fix is pretty fast. First thing open your control panel. If you’re in list look for “User Accounts” if you’re in the Category look for “User Accounts and Family Safety” then under that “Add or remove user accounts” If you are taken to your profile with the “Change your password, Profile picture, ect” Then you need to click the “Manage another account” button. You are going to create another account, it’s quiet simple. Give yourself a name, are you an Admin or Standard user, password, profile picture. After that log out of the temp profile and into the new you just created.
That’s done, before you delete your old profile you need to get the data. For that open a windows browser. Start in your C:/ drive and move to the following directory. “C:\Users” Here you should see the temp profile, the old profile, and the new profile. Open your old profile and copy everything from it to your new profile. After this has completed you should double check and make sure it’s all there you can safely delete the old and temp profile folders and remove the other account.
If you have any questions or comments please post below. I’ll get to them ASAP. Also I am not responsible for any damage you may do to your computer by following this guide. As long as you back up you should be good though. Cheers.