I'm a little confused...

When I log into the main SharePoint web interface (SharePoint 2007) I'll see a specific user under People and Groups.

Then if I log into Central Admin > Shared Services > User Profiles and Properties > View User Profiles and attempt to search for that user I can't find it.

How is that possible.. shouldn't all SharePoint users be searchable in the View User Profiles section?


2 Answers 2


In 2007 the synchronization between Site Collection and User Profile was not very good. A user does not have to have a user profile to get added to a Site Collection. One has little to do with the other. When a user hits a site collection for the first time they are authenticated against AD and then a record is added to the site collection. This may or may not trip the creation of a user profile for them. Additionally, the profile synchronization may actually remove their record if they don't exist in the import.

The process got a LOT better in 2010, though it's slow. It is much faster in 2013.


Users within Site Collections are stored within the Site Collection's own User Information List. Consider these islands from all other places where users reside.

The Shared Service User Profiles are users imported from, typically Active Directory into the Profile database. It is possible that this functionality is not working properly, or was never set up, or the user was deleted from Active Directory and removed from the Profile database.

  • Shared Services import is setup and working (there are thousands of users). But the Site Collection does have users that are not found in the Shared Services. How do they get into the Site Collection if not from the AD Import? Thank you very much for this info!
    – sayguh
    Jan 16, 2014 at 13:54
  • Have you checked that the user exist in Active Directory? It is likely that these are old users that have been deleted. In this case SharePoint still have it in the user information list but don't show it anywhere else. Jan 16, 2014 at 14:35

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