User profiles provide a way of allowing Windows NT users to have the same desktop settings and configuration regardless of which Windows NT workstation they log on to. The profile is supplied to the user's workstation during logon. In this lesson, you'll examine how the upgrade affects the Windows NT user profiles.
After this lesson, you will be able to
Estimated lesson time: 20 minutes
The location of the profile is a property of the user name. If it is a roaming profile, it is stored in a shared folder. When the user logs on, the profile is uploaded to the workstation being used for logon. At logoff, it is then copied back to the shared folder unless it's a mandatory profile, in which case, nothing else occurs.
When a system is upgraded to Windows 2000, all user properties are retained, including the user profile information. Therefore, the behavior of user profiles for both downlevel and Windows 2000 clients will remain the same. Users shouldn't notice any difference in the way their profiles perform.
The caveat to the previous scenario is that profiles will work perfectly as long as your users don't switch between logging on to Windows 2000 clients and Windows NT clients. If your users need to use both versions of workstations, you might find inconsistencies. For example, if the Windows NT workstation client has bitmaps being used for the desktop that the Windows 2000 client doesn't have, the bitmaps won't be available when the user logs on to the Windows 2000 workstation client. This type of problem existed with Windows NT networks as well, but it's likely to be exacerbated now when working with Windows 2000 clients as the Windows 2000 Professional clients are more likely to contain different files from the Windows NT workstation clients.
Another complication occurs when Windows NT system policies are in use. If a user is subject to a Windows NT system policy that updates his or her roaming profile in any way, such as changing a bitmap, these settings will be cached with the profile and then uploaded when the user logs off. As you'll see in the next lesson, Windows 2000 saves its policy settings in a different location. This, in turn, causes the size of the user's profile to increase because of the number of extra (duplicated) registry settings.
In this practice, you will investigate how user profiles work in a mixed Windows NT and Windows 2000 environment. The user names that were created for the MIGKIT domain in Chapter 6 were assigned roaming profiles that are stored in the C:\Profiles folder on MIGKIT1.
The desktop pattern will change as Critters is loaded.
Notice that the desktop changes to show the Critters pattern. This indicates that the user profiles are working as they should. Now you'll investigate scenarios where anomalies in user profiles can occur.
The Windows NT Workstation bitmap should appear on your screen.
You shouldn't see the Windows NT Workstation bitmap because it isn't contained in the C:\Winnt folder of MIGKIT1.
When working with a mixture of Windows NT and Windows 2000 clients, these types of anomalies will occur frequently. However, if you're upgrading only the Windows NT servers, your Windows NT client profiles will be unaffected. The best solution for this is to store all profile components such as bitmaps on a network share or to upgrade the Windows NT workstations as soon as possible. See Appendix B on Windows 2000 Workstation deployment for further details.
In this lesson, you learned that the profile settings for a user are retained after upgrading a Windows NT domain controller; however, if a mixed environment of Windows NT and Windows 2000 clients are used, users who log on to both platforms might encounter inconsistencies with their profiles.