how to transfer programs from one user account to another user account

I want to transfer selective programs that appear in 'All Programs' from one user account to another

Question Info

Last updated December 14, 2018 Views 22,574 Applies to:
If you mean that you want an entry in Start > All Programs to move from one account to another on the same computer, that's easy.  If you're talking about two different computers, you can't do it (you'll have to uninstall from one and reinstall on the other using the original installation media).

Warning:  Some programs, for example Internet browsers, have "profiles" that are specific to each user.  If this is the type of program you are concerned about, you can't just move the shortcut as described below.  If you are not sure, please identify which "selective programs" you want to move.

Change contents of Start > All Programs on two accounts on the same computer

This is easiest if you have at least one account with "computer administrator" privileges.  If you have to, you can use the built-in account named "Administrator."  The default password for that account is blank (no password).  You can access Administrator from Safe Mode or -- in XP Pro only -- from the Welcome screen with no other accounts logged on by pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL twice.

The key to this procedure is knowing that the entries in Start > All Programs are merely shortcuts that point to the actual location of the application executable files.  The following is easier to do than to explain.

Assume that you want to move an entry from account A to account B on the same computer.

Assume you are logged in to account A and that it is a computer administrator account.

  • Right-click Start and select Open
  • Double click the Programs folder
  • Scroll down until you find the program that you are interested in or the folder in which it is located.

If account A is NOT a computer administrator account and you are instead logged into Administrator (or account C, which is a computer administrator account), replace the first step with the following:

  • Open a Windows Explorer window and navigate to C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Start Menu, where <username> is the name of the account, i.e., A

Now open a new Windows Explorer window and navigate to C:\Documents and Settings\<username2>\Start Menu, where <username2> is the name of the other account, i.e., B.

Click-n-drag the item from the first Windows Explorer window to the second one.

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