Here’s the problem:
You have one, two, three, or more mapped drives that everyone in the office needs access to, you just got a new PC, and you are dreading having to map these drives everytime someone new logs in to the PC.

Here’s the solution: (special thanks to John Savill over at Windows IT Pro for the original outline) This solution assumes you are in a Windows Domain environment (not a home PC). It also assumes it’s a small office that doesn’t use logon scripts pushed down from a domain controller.

  1. Log into the PC with a domain user account that has Local Administrator privileges (JDOE, for example).
  2. Manually map the drives you need, selecting the “Reconnect at login” option.
  3. Now log out and log back in as the actual Local Administrator.
  4. From the Start Menu select Run, type in REGEDIT, and click OK to open the registry editor. (Do I need to mention that if you are not comfortable editing the registry – don’t? You can really do some damage if you screw it up…)
  5. Select HKEY_USERS and from the File menu select Load Hive.
  6. Browse to the profile you used to map the drives (like C:Documents and SettingsJDOE) and select the NTUSER.DAT file. When prompted, give it the name “DefaultU”. (Note: You need to have “Show hidden files and folders” turned on to see the NTUSER.DAT file…)
  7. Notice that now there is a new entry under the HKEY_USERS key called “DefaultU”.
  8. Browse to HKEY_USERSDefaultUX (where X is one of the drive letters you mapped), right click on it and select Export to export the key to a REG file. Do remember where you save it. Repeat for all the drives you mapped.
  9. Highlight the DefaultU key and from the file menu, select Unload Hive.
  10. From the file menu, select Load Hive and browse to the profile of the Default User (see, different that the earlier steps). Select the NTUSER.DAT file. When prompted, give it the name “DefaultU”.
  11. Now you need to import the REG files you exported earlier. Find them, and double click them one at a time to import them back into the registry.
  12. The last steps are a little tricky so pay attention. Browse to the HKEY_USERSDefaultUNetworkX key and highlight the X.
  13. In the right pane, select the UserName value, right click and select Delete.
  14. From the Edit menu, select New> Expandable String Value.
  15. Give it the Value Name: UserName, and for the String (with the quotes): “%UserDomain%%UserName%” (case sensitive).
  16. Repeat for all the drives you mapped.
  17. Highlight the HKEY_USERSDefaultU key and unload it (File>Unload Hive).

That’s it – you’re done! Test your results by logging in as someone else or by renaming the profile you used to originally create the mapped drives (C:Documents and SettingsJDOE to C:Documents and SettingsJDOEX) and then log in as JDOE.

Let me know how it goes!