We are using SharePoint 2010 Enterprise and have a User Profile service set to synchronize against AD DS.

When a user's username changes, because of marriage or mis spelling, there are a set of actions we need to go through to ensure they can still access all the site collections they are entitled to. These are :

  1. Farm.MigrateUserAccount(old, new , false)
  2. Determine if user has mysite - mysite url is based on Username. If a mysite is defined whe must:
    • Backup mysite
    • Restore in new place
    • Delete old mysite
    • Clean up backup
  3. Check user details correct - some of these may not sync sometimes (First Name, Surname, Display Name, Email address, Mysite url, Personal site)
  4. Clean up UserData tables - artifacts are left behind which interfere with the correct operation of the sites. These are deleted.
  5. Ensure user is Site Collection Admin of their mysite

Currently these actions are performed manually and it is a time consuming process. We wish to create a tool to perform them for us, but I wanted to find out what is considered best practice regarding name changes before we do.

Thanks, Matt

2 Answers 2


Matt, we had the same issue at our company. After a fair amount of trial and error, and even backing up and restoring the site collection with a corrected name url, there were still issues. We opted to move the content temporarily and have them delete and re-create using the MyContent link, and copy back their content. The User Profile service while improved, is still incomplete in its ability to replicate AD info and subsequently resolve all the artifact changes necessary inside SharePoint to make it 1 with the force.

  • Thanks, glad to hear it not just us having problems with this. Checking details in the profile and tidying up the UserData tables (though unsupported) still seem to be requirements of making the daft thing work.
    – Matthew
    Mar 8, 2013 at 9:59

At our company we have a name change tool that was deved in house. This is the tool that is used to change the name in AD and also any other systems, including SharePoint, that need to be updated. We currently have the app call a custom SharePoint web service that handles everything SharePoint related.

A few comments on your requirements above

#2: I understand why you would WANT to do this, but it isn't required to get the new userid to function correctly. The only downside is the url is incorrect.

#3: If your user profile service application is functioning correctly, this shouldn't be an issue but you might have to wait for a sync to run.

#4: I haven't seen this before, what might these be?

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