Introducing Account Profile Fixer

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Fred
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Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

It is no news for a computer tech that, when nothing else works, creating a new user account to replace a corrupted one can save us from fully reinstalling Windows.

Actually, it's one of the things I do most, lately. Whether the user lost his password, MS Edge is not working, Store apps are not working, Windows explorer is not showing the Start screen or the notification area, or the user can not login, it always ends up with the same basic solution.

In order to minimize data loss, I usually do the following:
  • Login to an admin account different from the one I'm to fix.
  • Delete the bad user account while keeping the user data.
  • Grant access to the old profile dir, and rename it.
  • Create a new user account with the exact same name as the old one.
  • Move data from the old account profile to the new one.
I usually skip moving the following folders, because the origin of the issue may be there:
  • %appdata%\Microsoft\Windows
  • %localappdata%\Microsoft\Windows
  • %localappdata%\Packages
But sometimes I do move %localappdata%\Packages, because it is where Windows Store apps save data, and the user might need it.

This is a lengthy process, especially if the user has many files to move to the new account, or the machine does not have a SSD. So I thought I needed a tool to do the job for me. And that is why I created Account Profile Fixer (APF).

When we launch the application, it shows up the user list. Here we just need to select the user account we want to fix and click Fix selected user (next step).
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Then we can choose whether to keep the folders listed above or not. By default, those folders are deleted. If we want to keep them, we tick the corresponding check mark.

And finally we click Fix selected account now and confirm.
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APF will then create a temporary admin account, reboot the machine and automatically login to that account, delete the bad user account, create a new one, fix permissions and move stuff. When finished, it will reboot again, and automatically login to the repaired user account. Hopefully the problem will be solved and you only used 3 clicks and 10 seconds of your time.

I plan to add more features to this tool, namely an option to try fixing the account's permissions instead, and manage the Profile List registry keys. I hope you enjoy it as it is for now.

Download here
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Charger440 »

Nice looking app. Can't wait to try it out. Especially on Windows 10 with the edge issues.
Jim

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wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Fred,

I gave “AccountProfileFixer” a try. When it finished and rebooted it came back up with three users. The user password doesn’t work on any of these accounts. This is Windows 10 Pro 64bit and is a local account.

Bill
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

Hi Bill. That never happened to me. This is what it should do, normally:

Reboot and automatically login to the Account Profile Fixer temp account with password apfpass. You may want to try that password.

Then, working from the Account Profile Fixer temp account, it should delete the account you selected, and create a new one. The new account has no password. Then it would set the permissions and move stuff, reboot again and automatically login to the new account. At this point, the Account Profile Fixer temp account's password was also removed, so you may also try logging in to this account with an empty password.

I don't know what happened, but it's possible that your AV software interfered with the application. It may also have failed if Execute Prevent is enabled and C:\Program Data is blocked.

So, you can try this:
Login to the Account Profile Fixer temp account with password apfpass.
Login to any of the accounts with no password.

Once you login, I would be happy to remote with TeamViewer and fix things around. Sorry about that, Bill.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

For what it's worth, I just tried APF in my bench machine, which has only one user account, and it worked fine.

In the end, when APF logs in to the repaired account, you should have a UAC prompt. This is when APF is going to delete the temporary account. It just needs to be sure the new user could login before deleting the temp account. It seems that, For Bill, none of the accounts could be removed, either the old user account, or the Account Profile Fixer temp account. Wonder why...
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Hi Fred,

I’ve been gone all day but I will give it a try again. I cloned my computer before trying it. I just had to try it. ;) I will give it another try as soon as I can with the additional information you gave me. I don’t know if this would matter but this computer I tested on does have an “Acronis Agent User” user account created by Acronis on it as well. I will report back.

Thanks, Bill
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wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Fred,

I hope this makes sense. Basically things are working. This is what I did.

I ran APF and left it alone for 17 minutes and was left with the temp account and one Bill account. I couldn’t log onto either one of those without a password. I didn’t try a password at this time.

I continued to let cook for a total of 30 minutes thinking it maybe needed more time and then rebooted. (Still couldn’t logon without a password) After it rebooted, I had the temp account and back to 2 Bill accounts and the UAC popped up. I said ok to the UAC. I still couldn’t logon without a password, so I entered the password "apfpass" on the temp account and it logged on, and after a very short time I was left with just the one repaired Bill account and all was right again.

A few thoughts. Every time I tried. I did make sure execute prevent was disabled, so that couldn’t be the issue. I’m just guessing but it may be Malwarebytes. I discovered some time back that if I don’t exit out of Malwarebytes before running system restore it fails every time. Anyway, let me know if you need better clarification or want me to do some testing for you.

Over all I would say it worked well and will save much time, frustration and hassle. :D

Thanks, Bill
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

Thanks, Bill. It's not working as it should, because the operation should be completely automated. Normally you only need to do things before and after the repair operation. I guess I should recommend disabling any security software prior to using this app.

I updated the executable and added some debug message boxes for failed operations. The download url remains the same.

http://www.carifred.com/apf/AccountProfileFixer.exe

P.S. Sorry for bringing the forum offline yesterday. I've been struggling to update the forum software for some time already. Wish I had chosen a different forum software. Now I'm still stuck with forum files version 3.2.2 and forum database version 3.2.1. Fortunately it works but it's still very frustrating. I'll probably try to update again, today or maybe tomorrow.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Fred,

I ran APF again with the new build you posted for download. Here’s how that went.

Started at 12:35pm

12:38pm it booted and automatically logged onto the apf_temp_admin account.

1:21pm. it’s still sitting in the same state as it was at 12:38pm logged onto the apf_temp_admin account.

Bill
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

Thanks, Bill. So it seems as if it's not automatically rebooting after the repair. It may also be that something is preventing the reboot, or maybe it just should wait longer before rebooting. Can you please manually reboot the machine and tell if it automatically logs in to the repaired account? Thanks.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

1:36pm. manually rebooted. It’s still logged onto the apf_temp_admin account.

1:59pm. it’s still logged onto the apf_temp_admin account. I guess it’s stuck.
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

Hum, maybe the scheduled task is not starting, then. Bill, can you please run the task scheduler, find the AccountProfileFixerTask and manually start it? Thanks.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Fred,

I don’t want to admit this, but the last time a ran APF I forgot to disable execute prevent. :roll: I checked task scheduler as you said and the task was being blocked by group policy. I’m going to run APF again. I have and double checked that execute prevent, SAS and MBam are all disable. I will report back shortly.

Bill
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

OK, Bill, thanks. I will make a new build tomorrow that runs from a different location, so Execute Prevent does not interfere with it.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Sounds good Fred,

I started it again. It rebooted and automatically logged onto the temp account.
It rebooted again to the temp logon screen but did not logon
I logged onto the temp account using “apfpass” after waiting for some time. UAC popped up and I said yes. So, now I’m logged onto the temp account and that’s as far as it has gone. It appears the computer is locked up because it doesn’t want to do anything. I’m going to run this build one more time to see what happens. I’ll try your new build tomorrow as well.

Thanks, Bill
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wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

It got stuck again. I ran it from the desktop. It must not like that. I had to take a picture with my cell phone. It wouldn’t let me save the capture.
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

I forgot to mention that APF's setup must not be executed from the temp admin account. That account is supposed to be deleted right after the repair operation. You should run it from a different admin account. I'll add a message for that too.

I'm going to make a new build where the APF temp admin account has no password from the beginning, and it runs from C:\AccountProfileFixer\APF.exe instead, so Execute Prevent does not mess with it.

Thanks for all your help, Bill.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

I actually ran that from E:\Desktop. Almost all the files on this computer are on the E:\ drive.
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Fred
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by Fred »

OK, Bill, but the application always copies itself to C:\Program Data\AccountProfileFixer\. That's why ExecutePrevent blocks it. I'm fixing all that right now.
The only thing we humans have in common is that we are all different. So, if you think you're weird because you're different from everyone else, then we are all weird.

Fred
wmmiller
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Re: Introducing Account Profile Fixer

Post by wmmiller »

Got it. I miss understood. Imagine that! :shock: :lol:
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