Corrupted User Profiles Can Cause New Local Default to be Lost

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Article ID: 216867 - View products that this article applies to.
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When a corrupted profile on the central server is downloaded, an error 1009 is logged to the Windows NT event system log. A new local profile is created from the local default. After you restart, however, the system will not reference the new local profile and will begin the cycle of pulling down the corrupted profile from the server again.

The following error is displayed:
The system cannot find the drive specified.


When Windows NT detects a certain type of profile corruption, a flag is set, causing the reference to the newly created user profile not to be saved in the registry. The user is given a new copy of the local default profile and can make changes to it which are saved to the hard disk. When the system is restarted, it looks for the local version to check the time stamp versus the server version. This check is made ONLY against profiles listed in the registry (not against the physical files in the profile directory) and, thus, the recently created local copy is ignored. The system then repeats the process of downloading the server copy (which is still corrupted) and the cycle repeats.


To work around this problem, after the user logs on and creates the file copies of the new local profile, manually copy these file copies to the profile server. They will be downloaded the next time the computer is restarted and should work fine from then on.


To resolve this problem, obtain the latest service pack for Windows NT 4.0 or the individual software update. For information on obtaining the latest service pack, please go to:
  • Windows Service Pack Center -or-

  • 152734 how to obtain the latest windows nt 4.0 service pack
For information on obtaining the individual software update, contact Microsoft Product Support Services. For a complete list of Microsoft Product Support Services phone numbers and information on support costs, please go to the following address on the World Wide Web:;EN-US;CNTACTMS


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in Windows NT 4.0. This problem was first corrected in Windows NT version 4.0 Service Pack 5.


For additional information, see the following article or articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
196284 Controlling Default Behavior for Roaming User Profiles


Article ID: 216867 - Last Review: June 11, 2012 - Revision: 2.0
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
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