Sometimes, when you log on to Windows 10 after entering the username and password, you may see an error The User Profile Service failed the sign-in. User profile cannot be loaded. The login is not performed, and you are asked to specify the username and password again and again. Among the most common mistakes with loading a user profile are:
- Corrupted user profile on disk (local or roaming);
- Antivirus software that performs files scanning and blocking in the profile folder at the time of authorization. This causes an error in loading the user profile;
- Corrupted Windows registry file;
- Corrupted default profile or incorrectly configured NTFS permissions.
Let’s consider how to fix User profile cannot be loaded error in Windows 10 and log on into the system.
First of all, we recommend restarting your computer and try to log in using your account. If the reboot didn’t help, go to the following methods.
Error “User Profile Cannot be loaded” When Logging in With a New User
If the error The User Profile Service failed the sign-in appears when you first log in to the system under a new account, it means that the Default profile is damaged. The default profile is the directory with the profile template for all users of this computer. Settings are copied to the new profile at the first logon. If the C:\Users\Default directory is damaged or missing, the Windows Profile service won’t be able to copy data from this directory to the new profile directory.
To fix the problem, it is enough to replace the damaged C:\Users\Default folder. Copy the same folder from the working operating system (the Windows 10 should build match). Verify that the properties of the Default folder and the NTFS permissions match.
Restart your computer and try to log in to the new account.
Error User Profile Cannot be Loaded for Only One Single User
If only one user has a problem with the profile, then only the directory or registry entry with the user’s profile is damaged. Try to logon as another user with administrator permissions. If this is not possible, boot your Windows 10 in safe mode, in the recovery console, or the Windows PE environment.
First, check the disk for errors using chkdsk. File system errors are the most common cause of corrupted Windows user profiles. Run the command:
chkdsk c: /f /r
Restart your computer and try to log in. In some cases, this may be enough. If this doesn’t help, boot your computer in Safe mode again. Open the Services.msc console and make sure the User Profile Service is started and configured to start automatically.
- Open the Registy Editor (regedit.exe) and go to the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList;
- In the list of the registry key tree, there will be several sections with long names starting with S-1-5. Each section corresponds to a single user profile. To determine which profile belongs to a specific user, you need to take a look at the value of the ProfileImagePath parameter. In our example, you can see that key S-1-5-21-3650440056-3766451173-3310994491-1001 corresponds to the root user (C:\Users\root). Check if this folder exists on the disk;
- If you find your user and the name of the registry key doesn’t end with .bak, change the value of the DWORD 32-bit parameters State and RefCount to 0. If these parameters are missing, create them);
- Sometimes, the profile tree for your profile has two sections. One of them ends in .bak. You need to rename the main section to .bak in the registry, and .bak to the main section. If there is only a key with .bak, simply remove this extension;
- Verify that the value of the RefCount and State parameters is 0;
- Restart the computer. In most cases, this should fix the problem with the damaged user’s profile.
If this doesn’t help, the official documentation Microsoft recommends to create a new account and copy the profile data there.