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My Documents for Guest accounts on Windows XP Pro

I have a laptop running Windows XP Pro. This laptop is used as a loaner and several people have been logging onto it using the Guest account. I have had a couple of people complain that when saving a document to the default "My Documents" after they log-out and back ina again later, the document is gone (I have also test this and experienced it) I beleive this is actually a "feature" of the Guest account. Is this true? Where can I find more information on this?

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I tried this out myself, and -- you're right! It appears that the Guest account's profile is similar to a Mandatory Profile. It only exists for the life of the session. Since the My Documents is part of the profile, it gets wiped out when users log off. Moral of the story: Have Guests save their data to a place it can be retrieved -- like a common network share, USB disk-on-key, or floppy disk. My friend James Conrad calls this the "Unwelcome Guest" feature.

This was first published in January 2004

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