MED-V: The Importance of Setting the UpdateServerProfileDirectory value in the SYSPREP.INF file

"By default, the automatic copying of customizations from the Administrator profile to the default user profile will not occur with SYSPREP if using Windows XP SP2 (with Hotfix 887816) or Windows XP SP3," KB959753.To avoid the problems that may arise from this issue with MED-V, be sure when preparing a workspace image for deployment, that […]

"By default, the automatic copying of customizations from the Administrator profile to the default user profile will not occur with SYSPREP if using Windows XP SP2 (with Hotfix 887816) or Windows XP SP3," KB959753.

To avoid the problems that may arise from this issue with MED-V, be sure when preparing a workspace image for deployment, that the SYSPREP.INF file has the following entry in it:

[UNATTENDED]

UpdateServerProfileDirectory=1

Here's one particular example of an issue that may arise if the value isn't set:

Here's the behaviors from an application suite (Web Application for Internet Explorer 6) that was preinstalled as a series of add-ins under the admin account when preparing the image.

  1. Seamless Mode logins for new users weren't getting the loaded add-ins or other critical app components.
  2. The Admin account was still able to use app in the workspace.
  3. new users could log off of seamless mode and then, after having their policies changed to full desktop, could log back on and get the app to launch after automatic re-configuring.
  4. Sizes of the NTUSER.DAT files differed significantly between correct behavior and failed behavior.

In this case this particular cause was two-fold:

  1. When a MED-V Workspace Starts, the Shell that's triggered in the guest OS is actually a program called WORKSPACESTARTER.EXE that'll either load the shell used for seamless mode (KidaroShell.exe) or the regular explorer shell if running in Full Desktop mode. This particular application could re-load it's add-ins upon logon if Explorer.exe was loaded as the initial shell.
  2. automatic copying of customizations from the Admin profile to default user profile didn't occur with SYSPREP.
  3. SYSPREP.INF file delivered with MED-V version 2.0 will have this value already set.

[Source]