Group Policy Preferences are a set of extensions, introduced in Windows Server 2008, that increase the functionality of Group Policy Objects (GPOs).
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The extensions, which are accessible through the Group Policy Management Console (GPMC), include advanced settings for folders, mapped drives and printers. With Group Policy Preferences, administrators can deploy and manage applications on client computers with configurations targeted to specific users. In many cases, they can replace the use of logon scripts.
Although Group Policy Preferences were first implemented in Windows Server 2008, administrators for Windows Server 2003, Windows XP and Windows Vista can use them by installing Group Policy client-side extensions.