> It's a home-use machine, running Vista x64 Ultimate. I've had it for
> one week now and not a lot of time to fiddle outside of setting it up.
> My username is the only one on the computer, I'm the only one who uses
> it, and I have not moved any of the default folders or changed any
> profile settings (that I know of). All I have done so far is install
> protection software, Microsoft critical updates, a few games, and
> Firefox; and used Microsoft's backup utility to copy over folders from
> my old XP machine into my "Documents" folder. I also uninstalled the
> extraneous Dell "bonus" sidebar (dashboard?) which puts flashy icons for
> the recycle bin, IE, Outlook, etc in a toolbar on top of the screen, and
> for which I have no use. (I don't remember what it's called; I
> uninstalled it first thing as it was annoying.)
> When I go to Control Panel -> User Accounts, I see my account (my name)
> listed as Administrator. The only other account is Guest, and that is
> turned off.
OK, I don't know why you aren't seeing your user account under C:\Users.
However, you don't have your machine set up in the best way for Vista. It is
never best practice to run as "root" ("Administrator" in the Windows world).
Although this was of course also true with XP, from a practical standpoint
it wasn't workable since so many programs designed for that operating system
didn't understand the necessity of running under a Standard user. In Vista,
you can run as Standard and should.
You particularly don't want only one user account with administrative
privileges on Vista because the built-in Administrator account (normally
only used in emergencies) is disabled by default. If you're running as
Administrator for your daily work and that account gets corrupted, things
will be Difficult. It isn't impossible to activate the built-in Administrator
to rescue things, but it will require third-party tools and working outside
the operating system.
The user account that is for your daily work should be a Standard user, with
the extra administrative user (call it something like "CompAdmin" or "Tech"
or the like) only there for elevation purposes. After you create
"CompAdmin", log into it and change your regular user account to Standard.
Then log back into your regular account.
If you want to go directly to the Desktop and skip the Welcome Screen with
the icons of user accounts, you can do this:
Start Orb>Search box>type: netplwiz [enter]
Click on Continue (or supply an administrator's password) when prompted by
Uncheck the option "Users must enter a user name and password to use this
computer". Select a user account to automatically log on by clicking on the
desired account to highlight it and then hit OK. Enter the correct password
for that user account (if there is one) when prompted. Leave it blank if
there is no password (null).
So go ahead and make the above changes and see what shows up under C:\Users
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