Saving and restoring existing Windows NT shares

Eliminate redundant work by saving share names and permissions from your original Windows NT installation

This tip was submitted to the SearchWin2000 Tip Exchange by member Humberto Higinio. Let other users know how useful it is by rating the tip below.


The information in this tip applies to:

  • Microsoft Windows NT operating system version 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation versions 3.5, 3.51, 4.0
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server versions 3.5, 3.51, 4.0
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server

    You can use this tip to:

  • Reinstall Windows NT over an existing installation (a clean install, not an upgrade.)
  • Move all of your data drives from one server to another.
  • Install Windows NT to another directory or drive on a computer that already has Windows NT installed.

    You can save the share names that exist on the original Windows NT installation, including any permissions assigned to those shares. To save only the existing share names and their permissions on Windows NT follow these steps:

    1. On the existing Windows NT installation containing the share names and permissions that you want to save, run the Registry Editor (Regedt32.exe.)

    2. From the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE subtree, go to the following key: SYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesLanmanServerShares

    3. Choose Save Key from the registry menu.

    4. Type a new file name (a file extension is not necessary) and save the file to a floppy disk.

    5. Reinstall Windows NT.

    6. Run Registry Editor. (Regedt32.exe.)

    7. From the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE subtree, go to the following key:
    SYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesLanmanServerShares.

    8. From the registry menu choose Restore.

    9. Type the path and file name of the file that you saved in steps 3 and 4.

    WARNING: This step overrides whatever shares already exist on the Windows NT machine with the share names and permissions that exist in the file you are restoring. You are warned about this before restoring the key.

    NOTE: If, after completing the procedure above, you decide that you should not have restored the Shares key, restart the computer and use the last known good configuration.

    10. Restart the server.

    Only permissions for domain users are restored. If a local user was created in the previous Windows NT installation, that local user's unique security identifier (SID) is lost.

    NTFS permissions on directories and files are not affected when you save and restore the shares key.

  • This was first published in May 2002

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