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Desktop Files Disappear When Upgrading To Windows 10?

May 14th, 2016

Microsoft is pushing the free Windows 10 upgrade to all Windows 7 and Windows 8 customers and your chance to get it at no cost ends in July 2016.  I recently took a plunge and upgraded my Windows 7 PC to Windows 10.  This was a momentous occasion for me because I have a lot of expensive, intricate software programs and everything worked fine on Windows 7.  I wasn’t sure I wanted to risk breaking my delicate system upgrading to Windows 10 but I took a risk because I liked what I saw in the new version of Microsoft Windows.
After the upgrade completed I was horrified to find that my Windows 10 desktop was completely blank.  None of my icons files from my Windows 7 desktop were on my new desktop.  I went into my C: drive and found that they were still on the computer, but Windows 10 was loading a new profile instead of my old one.
My Start Menu was also acting funny.  When I would click the Windows key to open the Start Menu, nothing would happen.  The feeling of panic and frustration overwhelmed me.  In my 20+ years of dealing with Windows I’ve never encountered anything like this before.  
If your stuff seems to have vanished it may be because your old files are trapped in a disabled administrator account, which can happen if you created a new Microsoft account during the upgrade from Windows 7.  
To switch back to your old user account, go to the Windows 10 search box in the Start menu, type in “computer management” and hit the Enter key.
The Windows 10 Computer Management app should open. When it does, click on “Local Users” and “Groups” in the left column and open the Users folder. If you see a downward-pointing arrow on the administrator account name listed, you need to re-enable it. 
Double-click the Administrator icon so the Properties box opens, turn off the checkbox next to “Account is disabled” and click the Apply button before you click OK. Log out of the computer and log back in again with your old account user name and password.
I tried the above and still had some issues so I did a chat with a Microsoft agent.  They had me “factory reset” Windows 10 – which seems like a crazy thing to do after the upgrade – but after that process completed all of my files and icons from Windows 7 were now populating in Windows 10.  The Start Menu also began functioning properly.  I haven’t encountered any major issues since.
If you run into any issues with files disappearing from a Windows 7 to Windows 10 upgrade or a Start Menu that isn’t cooperating, I hope you’ll find this article helpful.

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