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User Profile Service failed the sign-in - Fix in Windows 8

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    User Profile Service failed the sign-in - Fix in Windows 8

    User Profile Service failed the sign-in - Fix in Windows 8
    How to Fix "User Profile Service service failed the sign-in. User Profile cannot be loaded." Error in Windows 8 and 8.1
    Published by Brink is offline
    11 Jan 2014
    Default User Profile Service failed the sign-in - Fix in Windows 8

    How to Fix "User Profile Service service failed the sign-in. User Profile cannot be loaded." Error in Windows 8 and 8.1


    information   Information
    This is for when you try to sign in to a user account using a temporary profile, you get the error message below instead of your user account starting. When you click/tap on OK, you are taken back to the sign in screen.

    User Profile Service service failed the sign-in.

    User Profile cannot be loaded.

    OK
    A user profile is a collection of settings that make the computer look and work the way you want it to for a user account. It contains the account's settings for desktop backgrounds, screen savers, pointer preferences, sound settings, and other features. User profiles ensure that your personal preferences are used whenever you sign in to Windows.

    A user profile is different from a user account, which you use to sign in to Windows. Each user account has at least one user profile associated with it.


    This tutorial will show you how to fix the "User Profile Service service failed the sign-in. User Profile cannot be loaded." error when trying to sign in to a user account in Windows 8, Windows RT, Windows 8.1, and Windows RT 8.1.

    Note   Note
    Known causes of "User Profile Service failed the sign-in" error:

    • The C:\Users\(user-name) user profile folder was manually deleted instead of using the proper method in this tutorial. A user profile that is improperly deleted manually does not remove the security identifier (SID) from the profile list in the registry. Since the SID is still present, Windows will still try to load the profile of the user account by using the ProfileImagePath that points to a nonexistent user profile folder path. Therefore, the profile cannot be loaded.
    • The C:\Users\(user-name) user profile folder itself was improperly renamed manually, instead of using the proper method in this tutorial.
    • An unknown issue with the user profile entering into a backup state occurred.
    • A corrupted user profile.
    • Occasionally, Windows might not read your user profile correctly, for example, if your antivirus software is scanning your computer while you try to sign in. Try restarting your computer and signing in with your user account again to resolve the issue before following the options below.

    Tip   Tip
    If you are unable to fix this user profile error using either option in the tutorial below, then you could try doing a system restore using a restore point dated before you got this error to fix it.


    EXAMPLE: "User Profile Service service failed the sign-in. User Profile cannot be loaded." Error

    Name:  User_Profile_Service_failed_the_sign-in.jpg
Views: 69676
Size:  64.0 KB





    OPTION ONE
    To Try and Fix the User Profile of the User Account


    Note   Note
    This option is to attempt to repair the user profile of the user account that is getting the error by replacing the current bad user profile with a good backup copy to use instead to fix this error without losing anything.


    1. If you have another administrator account that is not affected by this user profile error, then sign out of the affected account (ex: Brink), and sign in to the other administrator account.

    Note   Note
    If you do not have another administrator account to sign in to, then you could do one of the following options below to enable the built-in Administrator account to sign in to, and continue on to step 2 below.

    A) Boot into safe mode, enable the built-in Administrator, sign out, and sign in to Administrator.

    OR

    B) Open a command prompt at boot, enable the built-in Administrator, restart the PC, and sign in to Administrator.


    2. Press the + R keys to open the Run dialog, type regedit, and click/tap on OK.

    3. If prompted by UAC, then click/tap on Yes.

    4. In Registry Editor, navigate to the location below. (see screenshot below)

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList


    Click image for larger version

    5. In the left pane under ProfileList, click on a SID key (S-1-5-21....long number). (see screenshot above)

    A) In the right pane of the SID key, look at the ProfileImagePath value to see if it is for the same user account name (ex: Brink) that has the user profile error.

    B) If not, then repeat step 5 until your find it, then go to step 6 below.

    6. If you improperly renamed the user profile folder (C:\Users\Brink) of the affected user account by right clicking on it and click/tap on Rename, then manually rename the user profile folder in File Explorer back to what it shows as the correct name (ex: Brink) in the ProfileImagePath value in the registry. (see screenshots below step 4 and below)

    Click image for larger version

    7. Do step 8 or 9 below depending on if you have either one or two SID keys with the same S-1-5-21....long number with one without .bak (ex: ...-1014), and one with .bak (ex: ...-1014.bak) at the end. (see screenshot below step 4)

    NOTE: The SID key without .bak is the current bad user profile, and the SID key with .bak is the hopefully good backup of the user profile.

    8. If you have Only One S-1-5 (SID) key with .bak at the end

    A) In the left pane, right click on the SID key (ex: ...-1014.bak) with .bak at the end of the numbers, and click/tap Rename. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  User_Profile_Service_Registry-3A.jpg
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Size:  26.2 KB

    B) Remove only .bak at the end of the numbers, press Enter, and go to step 10 below. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  User_Profile_Service_Registry-3B.jpg
Views: 68935
Size:  25.8 KB

    9. If you have Two S-1-5 (SID) keys with the Same Long Number

    A) In the left pane, right click on the top SID key (ex: ...-1014) without .bak at the end of the numbers, click/tap Rename, add .bk to the end of the numbers, and press Enter. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  User_Profile_Service_Registry-2A.jpg
Views: 68827
Size:  11.4 KB

    B) In the left pane, right click on the bottom SID key (ex: ...-1014.bak) with .bak at the end of the numbers, click/tap Rename, remove only .bak at the end of the numbers, and press Enter. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  User_Profile_Service_Registry-2B.jpg
Views: 68737
Size:  12.2 KB

    C) Now go back and Rename the first SID key with .bk to .bak now at the end of the numbers, press Enter, and go to step 10 below. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  User_Profile_Service_Registry-2C.jpg
Views: 68785
Size:  11.3 KB

    10. In the right pane of the SID key (ex: ...-1014) without .bak now, double click/tap on the RefCount DWORD to modify it. (see screenshot below step 4)

    Note   Note
    If you do not have RefCount, then right click or press and hold on an empty space in the right pane, click/tap on New and DWORD (32 bit) Value, type RefCount, and press Enter.

    The value for this entry will reset and return back to the original value after you have restarted the computer and logged on to the account.


    11. Type 0 (number), and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  RefCount.jpg
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Size:  20.7 KB

    12. In the right pane of the SID key (ex: ...-1014) without .bak now, double click/tap on the State DWORD to modify it. (see screenshot below step 4)

    Note   Note
    If you do not have State, then right click or press and hold on an empty space in the right pane, click/tap on New and DWORD (32 bit) Value, type State, and press Enter.

    The value for this entry will reset and return back to the original value after you have restarted the computer and logged on to the account.


    13. Type 0 (number), and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  State.jpg
Views: 68824
Size:  20.5 KB

    14. When finished, close Registry Editor, and restart the computer.

    15. See if you are able to sign in to the user account now without getting the "User Profile Service service failed the sign-in. User Profile cannot be loaded." error.





    OPTION TWO
    To Delete and Create a new User Profile for the User Account


    Note   Note
    This option will basically delete the user profile of the user account that is getting the error in order to reset and rebuild the user profile to default to fix this error. You will lose all of your account settings and personalization.


    1. If you have another administrator account that is not affected by this user profile error, then sign out of the affected account (ex: Brink), and sign in to the other administrator account.

    Note   Note
    If you do not have another administrator account to sign in to, then you could do one of the following options below to enable the built-in Administrator account to sign in to, and continue on to step 2 below.

    A) Boot into safe mode, enable the built-in Administrator, sign out, and sign in to Administrator.

    OR

    B) Open a command prompt at boot, enable the built-in Administrator, restart the PC, and sign in to Administrator.


    2. Back up anything that you do not want to lose in the C:\Users\(user-name) profile folder (ex: Brink) of the affected user account to another location. When finished, delete the C:\Users\(user-name) folder.

    3. Press the + R keys to open the Run dialog, type regedit, and click/tap on OK.

    4. If prompted by UAC, then click/tap on Yes.

    5. In Registry Editor, navigate to the location below. (see screenshot below)

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList


    Click image for larger version

    6. In the left pane under ProfileList, click on a SID key (S-1-5-21....long number). (see screenshot above)
    NOTE: Usually, it will be for the SID key that has .bak at the end of the long number.

    A) In the right pane of the SID key, look at the ProfileImagePath value to see if it is for the same user account name (ex: Brink) that has the user profile error.

    B) If not, then repeat step 6 until your find it, then go to step 7 below.

    7. Right click or press and hold on the SID key (ex: ...-1014.bak) found in step 6, and click/tap on Delete. (see screenshot below step 5)

    8. Click/tap on Yes to confirm. (see screenshot below)

    Name:  ProfileList_Registry-2.jpg
Views: 68755
Size:  21.0 KB

    9. If there is another SID key (ex: ...-1014 at end) with the exact same long number from step 6 for the same user account (ex: Brink) without .bak at the end of it, then repeat step 7 and 8 above for it as well

    Name:  Two_SIDs.jpg
Views: 68685
Size:  10.0 KB

    10. When finished, close Registry Editor.

    11. See if you are now able to sign in to the user account (ex: Brink) from step 1 without getting the "User Profile Service service failed the sign-in. User Profile cannot be loaded." error.

    12. If successful, the affected account's (ex: Brink) user profile will be recreated and no longer receives the error. You can then copy any files you want back from the back up created at step 2.




    That's it,
    Shawn


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  2. #1



    Junior Member

    Join Date : Mar 2014
    Posts : 2
    Windows 8.1
    Belarus


    Good tutorial. Unfortunately it didn't cut it for my particular case. The symptom was the same message and it occurred for all additional users I tried to add after the first one.

    I had to do a bit more searching and found additional solution. The gist of it is like this - user profile is created when the user first tries to log on. During this process profile data is copied from the default profile. If file permissions are messed up then this process will fail. The solution is to propagate permissions from default user folder to all it's subfolders and files.

    See here for details - "User Profile Service service failed the logon. User profile cannot be loaded."

    Perhaps it would be good to update this tutorial with this scenario as well.


      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #2
    Brink's Avatar

    Administrator



    Join Date : Jul 2009
    Posts : 17,903
    64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise (RTM)
    us texas


    Hello Win8Review, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    Yeah, your user profile error was complicated by a permissions issue.

    Did you do anything with permissions before this happened?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #3



    Junior Member

    Join Date : Mar 2014
    Posts : 2
    Windows 8.1
    Belarus


    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Did you do anything with permissions before this happened?
    Nope. It was like this from the get-go, after doing a clean install of vanilla Windows 8.1. When I was doing the initial setup my Internet connectivity was flaky so I suspect that something might have gone wrong because of that.

    I did go though many threads with a similar problem. A number of them referred to this tutorial and some people claimed that it didn't help. I suspect that they might have a similar issue.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #4



    Junior Member

    Join Date : May 2014
    Posts : 5
    Windows 8.1


    Hey Brink, great tutorial. I did much of these steps, albeit after deleting the profile via the registry, and later the location under C:/Users. I seem to be stuck, even when i activate the default admin profile and log-in, I cannot add another profile, etc. ug. When I attempt to sign back in in under my name, I get the same "user profile service failed the sign-in"... do you have any other ideas? "
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #5
    Brink's Avatar

    Administrator



    Join Date : Jul 2009
    Posts : 17,903
    64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise (RTM)
    us texas


    Hello Hbomb, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    In that case, you might see if doing a system restore using a restore point dated before this error may be able to sort it.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #6



    Junior Member

    Join Date : May 2014
    Posts : 5
    Windows 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Hello Hbomb, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    In that case, you might see if doing a system restore using a restore point dated before this error may be able to sort it.
    I'm trying but it's giving me an unspecified error while writing to the registry, and failing the restore. I've tried two restore points as of yet. Is this install of windows trashed? (I did delete the profile in the registry earlier 1-5-21)
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #7
    Brink's Avatar

    Administrator



    Join Date : Jul 2009
    Posts : 17,903
    64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise (RTM)
    us texas


    You might see if you may be able to do a system restore at boot instead.

    If not, then yeah it may be time to reinstall Windows.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #8



    Junior Member

    Join Date : May 2014
    Posts : 6
    Windows 8


    Hi all, I'm also having the "user profile service service failed the sign-in. user profile cannot be loaded". I was getting "you've been signed in with a temporary profile" and went into the reg and changed the bak but i didnt create another user. I cant boot in safe mode with Shift +F8
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #9
    Brink's Avatar

    Administrator



    Join Date : Jul 2009
    Posts : 17,903
    64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise (RTM)
    us texas


    Hello Rob, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    Since this was not your original error, see if this below may help instead.

    You've been signed in with a temporary profile - Fix

    Here are other ways to boot into Safe Mode.

    Safe Mode - Start Windows 8 in
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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