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I have yet to setup the User Profile Service on my new SP2010 Farm. Yet when I go to view my user information or other users' information, it contains properties (mobile number, department, etc) that contain data that were populated from Active Directory. How did this import/synchronization occur witout the User Profile Service Setup yet?

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I guess if you use Windows Authentication for creating your Web Application, first time it imports users data from Active Directory! Please someone correct me if I am wrong, I have some doubts on this too! :) –  Arsalan Adam Khatri Jan 23 '13 at 22:09
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100% correct Arsalan. Because you are using Windows Auth, Sharepoint connects to AD and retrieves some basic user information. This is not to be confused with the User Profile Service. This is standard behaviour. –  Fox Feb 12 '13 at 15:11

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