Folder Redirection Broken After GPO Changes

I am learning quite a bit about the Windows 2012 environment thanks to a recent server migration.  The biggest lesson so far deals with Folder Redirection, and the effects of repeated adjustments to the GPO settings.

Under certain circumstances, folder redirection seems to get “stuck” showing either an old folder path or none at all when the user goes looking for their documents.  The Group Policy Results tool seems to confirm that the Folder Redirection settings are not being applied at all for the user/computer profile that is stuck.  Frustratingly, I couldn’t find any problem with my Group Policy configuration.

No amount of logging off and on, adjusting permissions, or messing with Group Policy seems to have any effect.

In the end, I was able to clear up the problem by running this command:

gpupdate /Target:User /Force /Logoff

The key here is the Force option, which successfully resets the folder redirection policy for that user profile, and perhaps all the profiles on that particular computer.  Problem solved!  Windows 8.1, Windows 2012, and possibly other versions are affected.

2 thoughts on “Folder Redirection Broken After GPO Changes”

  1. I wanted to thank you for this blog. It is amazing that so often we look for the hardest solution to a problem when something as easy and basic as a targeted gpupdate is the real solution. I too was having an issue at a customer site where we were migrating to a new file server. Once I created the share for the home folders, I changed the GPO to reflect the new location. When the users with Windows 7 Pro logged into the domain the next morning, their home folders were automatically moved to the new location successfully. However, none of the Windows 8 Pro users worked. I found so called solutions on the internet that ran anywhere from changing the SMB version on the server and workstations to blaming it on an HP issue. This ain’t my first rodeo, so I quickly moved on down the internet highway until I found this blog. I had already tried a gpupdate /force that didn’t work, but targeting this to just the user policies made a lot of sense once I read it. It has fixed it on every Windows 8 workstation here. Thanks again for keeping it real.

  2. During my time with Group Policy, I came across with a lot of errors and problems when modifying Group Policy and by running gpupdate /force fixed everything. When I make any changes to the group policy, I always run this command both on the server and on the client machine.

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