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If you use multiple computers, you will lose your data! See details below.

Starting in April 2024, F&O and IIRM Windows computers will automatically delete inactive user profiles after 45 days of inactivity. This change helps manage disk space and greatly improves data security and computer performance. However, it could lead to unforeseen data loss if you haven’t taken precautions.

What does this mean for you?

  • If you have not logged into a particular computer in 45 days, Windows will automatically delete your profile folder on that computer. This folder contains some of your personal files, desktop files, documents, pictures and saved application settings.
  • Once deleted, recovering this data is almost impossible. Saving files to shared storage or cloud storage is crucial in preventing data loss.

Here’s what you can do to protect your data:

  • Save files to your OneDrive or to B: drive shared folders. Data on shared and cloud storage is not impacted by profile deletion.
  • Login to OneDrive on every computer you use and make sure it is syncing your files. OneDrive syncs files from your desktop and personal folder to the cloud and between the computers you use. You can right click on the blue cloud icon in the system tray and look for the message “Your files are synced” to tell if it is working.
  • Do not let a computer with important files sit idle. Regularly log in to your Windows account on the computer(s) you keep important files on.
  • Backing up your files to removable storage is NOT recommended and may violate University policy if you handle sensitive information. If you use USB drives or other removable storage, please contact your F&O IT Security Liaisons for details on safely using removable drives like USB thumb drives.

We understand that losing your data can be stressful and inconvenient. By taking these simple steps, you can ensure our valuable data remains safe.

These changes bring F&O IT into alignment with best practices for data protection for both for University policy and NIST compliance. If you have questions or concerns about this policy, please contact the F&O IT Security staff or the F&O IT Executive Director.

Dan L Barker
F&O IT Desktop Security Lead, Information Security Liaison

Quinton McDonald
F&O IT Desktop Security, Information Security Liaison

Ray Reitz
F&O IT Executive Director