If you want to join your system to an Active Directory Domain, BUT you don't wanna lose your data & restart from scratch (ie. your Desktop, files, settings, shortcuts, you-name-it), here's how.
Before actually doing your real Local User Account to Domain User Account "profile migration", make yourself a favour — do a "test" run first (ie. by creating a new Local "test" User Account) & check for yourself that it works!
For your "test"-scenario:
- Create a new "test" User Account (BOTH on your local system & your Active Directory Domain Controller).
- Now login to the Local System w/the "test" Local User Account.
This way, a new "C:\Users\test" is created on your PC.
- While logged in as the "test" User, feel free to replicate some of your "REAL" Local User Profile settings (ie. things you wish to migrate to the new Domain-enabled Account, like your "Google Drive"-setup, your Libraries, etc.).
Once you're done playing, it is now time to migrate ("map") your "test" Local User Account to your "test" Domain User Account.
That will retain all your settings and customisations as-is (including your Desktop icons location).
To do that, we'll rely on a wonderful application named User Profile Wizard ("Profwiz.exe" for friends) from ForensIT.
Proceed as follows:
- Login to the System as Local Administrator.
- Download "User Profile Wizard" free and decompress it to your Desktop.
- Join your Windows PC to the Domain & reboot.
Once on the Domain:
- Login to the PC with your "test" Domain Account.
By so doing, you'll get a new (default, empty) "C:\Users\test.domain"-folder on your local system.
- Now Logout & login as (Local) Administrator Account.
- Run Profwiz.exe from your Desktop and follow the wizard prompts according to your requirements.
Namely, make sure to map the Local "test" User to the Domain "test" User.
- Logout when finished.
- Login to the System w/the "test" Domain Account.
You will notice the "test" Domain Account has all its previous Local "test" User Profile settings untouched!
- IF the Local "test" User Profile previously had "Local Administrator" privileges, you will notice some apps might not work.
You can grant the test User Profile Local Administrator permissions by providing him Membershit to the (Local) "Administrators" group.
Proceed as follows:
- Open Control Panel.
- Click on Manage User Accounts.
- Browse for the "test" Domain Account -> "Properties" and grant it membership to (Local) "Administrators"-Group.
Or perhaps you might wish to read one of my previous guides on this subject:
- 3 ways to grant "Local Admin" permissions to Domain Users.
- Secure Restricted Groups to grant Local Admin Credentials to Domain Users.
- How to setup Per-Computer “Local Admins” on a Domain.
Gimme that which I desire.
Alright, now that "Fuel is pumping engines" (cit. Metallica), repeat the above with you real user.