Retrieving User Account

I've done some searches to try and find the solution, but I haven't found them yet so my apologies if I've obviously overlooked something.

I began having BSOD's on my PC, after a significant amount of work, I made the decision to repair the files through Windows 7 with the option to retain my files and setting vs. a clean install. I subsequently realized that the problem that was likely causing the BSOD was an incorrectly seated video card (I currently have two GTX-295's).

That being said, with the reinstall the original administrator's account is no longer accessible. I've got the folder on the C: drive where I'd hope to be able to reactivate it and therefore retain all the previously installed programs rather than having to reinstall everything.

Any thoughts on how I might be able to get the current version of Windows 7 to "see" this User Account and as such avoid the reinstall of everything?

Thanks in advance.


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

If you did a repair install and changed you user name, then all of your software should still work. And you should still find the old user data under the previous user name in....

C:\Documents and Settings\What ever your old User Name was.

You should be able to find all of you old favorites, documents, preferences etc here.

As to how you would reactivate the old account, that I'm not sure of, perhaps once you see if the old account is still listed you can reactivate it through account management somehow.

I've never tried to do this, I just copied the things I needed from the old account to the new one.


Simply copying the files doesn't work as it doesn't restore the program list from the start menu...or at least I haven't been able to make it work. That's the most important thing to me at the moment. Any other thoughts??


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

Do you mean that when you click on the start orb and select "All Programs" that it is blank, or that nothing appears in the "Start Menu" list?

If nothing appears in the "Start Menu" list then you can restore them by right clicking on each program you want in the all programs list and selecting "Pin to Start Menu".

The startup list in Windows 7 is usually a hidden file so make sure that you unclick the hide hidden files and folders option.

I found mine at: Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start menu

Are you sure that you did a repair and not a complete reinstall of Window?
If you did reinstall Windows completely, then your old user data will still be there but you will have to reinstall all of your software again.

Look under Program Files x86 and see if the software installations are still there.

If they are, try opening one directly from it's .exe file and see if it runs.
If it does then you can do the same thing, right click on each .exe file and select "Pin to Start Menu"

Anyone ever wonder why there isn't a "Pin to Desktop" option?

If I'm not understanding your problem come back and let me know.


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