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If you’re logging in and continually getting the “You are using a temporary Profile..” message then here’s how to fix it. Windows is having trouble reading your profile and it is likely your profile registry key has become corrupted.

windows 7 temporary profile

Fixing the temporary profile error is usually pretty quick and easy and if this is the first time you’ve seen this error then maybe Windows just temporarily couldn’t read your profile. Reboot your computer and see if you get the same error.

If you do, then here’s how to fix the temporary profile error. It requires changing a registry key.


Beware! Manipulating Windows 7 registry keys is serious business and if you modify registry keys incorrectly then serious problems could occur. Please follow these instructions closely:

  • – Open up the registry editor: press the Start key and type regedit. You’ll see it turn up in the menu, click on it or press enter.
  • – Browse to the following register folder by expanding the folder list on the left hand side: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList
  • – The folders under that will be all numbers, you may have to drag the windows divider to the right to see the full numbers.
  • – Chances are you will see two sets of number that are the same, except one has “.bak” at the end. That’s the one you want.
  • – Rename the one that has no extension and add “.old” to the end of it. Right-click on it and select Modify
  • – Now modify the .bak one and just remove the “.bak” from the end.
  • – Logout or Reboot
  • – Log back in

This time you should not see the temporary profile error message.


Note: If you do, then you have more serious issues and your first step now should be to backup whatever you can. If possible login to this computer with a different administrator account and then browse to the User folder for your login and copy the Desktop, Favorites, Documents, AppData, and any other folders you need.

Time to call for technical help!