Microsoft KB Archive/103495

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Knowledge Base

Modifying USERDEF Hive So That New Users Get Defined Settings

Article ID: 103495

Article Last Modified on 10/31/2006


  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51

This article was previously published under Q103495


Under Windows NT, you can modify the USERDEF hive so that all newly created users inherit certain settings. Anything that can be defined or modified in HKEY_CURRENT_USER can also be set in the USERDEF hive (for example, colors, screen savers, program groups, sounds, and cursors).


To view or modify the USERDEF hive, do the following:

WARNING: Using Registry Editor incorrectly can cause serious, system-wide problems that may require you to reinstall Windows NT to correct them. Microsoft cannot guarantee that any problems resulting from the use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use this tool at your own risk.

  1. Start Registry Editor by choosing Run from the File menu of Program Manager, typing "regedt32" (without the quotation marks), and pressing ENTER.
  2. Select the "HKEY_USERS on Local Machine" window.
  3. From the Registry menu, choose Load Hive.
  4. From the C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32\CONFIG (or equivalent) directory, select the USERDEF file.
  5. In the Key Name field, type "USERDEF" (without the quotation marks).
  6. Modify the USERDEF subkeys as desired.
  7. From the Registry menu, choose Unload Hive, and choose the Yes button.
  8. Quit Registry Editor.

Now when you create a new user from User Manager, the new user's hive will contain the modified information.

Additional query words: default groups profile

Keywords: kbusage KB103495