Changing the Default Power Profile on Windows 2000

At work we use Symantec Ghost to keep time re-installing user computers to a minimum. Part of achieving that goal is trying to reduce the number of unique images we have to keep up to date. For instance, we currently have 2 images for 7 different models of computers. One image in particular is set up to work on both our Compaq laptops and older Compaq desktops. To make sure that this image works on both machines, we have to load the image to both and re-dump the image back to the Ghostcast server after allowing the normal hardware discovery.

The other day I noticed that the power profile on the desktop machine was set to Portable/Laptop by default. Quite annoying when most people step away from their desks for 20 minutes or more on a regular basis. Guess what! That’s by design according to Micorsoft KB247234 . To resolve this, most people seem to be suggesting that you copy a profile that has been set to use the Desktop power scheme to the Default User profile. I find this particularly messy. It copies lots of other things like system paths along with it. Bad idea. And Microsoft’s solution is just plain weak: Manually select the power scheme.

A better alternative to this is to load the Default User registry hive and change the applicable registry entry. To do this…

  • Start –> Run.
  • Open regedt32 [Click OK]. Note the lack of "i" in regedt32.
  • Select the HKEY_USERS window.
  • Go to Registry –> Load Hive.
  • In C:\\\\Documents and Settings\\\\Default User , select and open the NTUSER.DAT file.
  • Set a Key Name of "Default User".
  • Under \\\\HKEY_USERS\\\\Default User\\\\Control Panel\\\\PowerCfg , open the key named CurrentPowerPolicy
  • Set the string to 0 instead of 1. [Click OK]
  • Select the HKEY_USERS\\\\Default User branch.
  • Go to Registry –> Unload Hive.

Thats it! All new profiles created will use Desktop as the default profile.