In my SBS 08 (AD, exchange), is it possible to change the name, email address of a user because he is leaving and I'd like to transfer all the account and credential to the new employee that is replacing him.

Lot's of thing are set up for this user and it would save me lots of time if I can transfer an account like this.

Thanks for your help !

3 Answers 3


Yes, just find the user in AD users and computers, right click on the user and go to rename. Enter the new new you want, click ok and you will then get a box with some additional attributes come up.

Once this is do you will need to go to the email tab of their account in ADUC and change, or add any email addresses.

  • @downvoters I don't disagree that best practice is to copy the account, but the OP asked if they could rename it, and they can.
    – Sam Cogan
    Mar 18, 2010 at 14:42
  • +1 to fix down vote - just because it's not best practice doesn't mean the answer isn't correct for the question that was asked.
    – Zypher
    Mar 18, 2010 at 23:09

I was also taught the best practice is to copy and not rename as Zypher stated, for a few reasons.

1) When renaming, the new person logs into their pc they will be using the old users profile, which can cause confusing.

2) Also, if you use user folders on the server which most people do and should, they will be using the old users folder on the server, which again, can cause confusion in the future.

It's best to copy the user account, and create new or rename the users folder on the server, then fix rights of course.


  • 3
    Absolutely. You can but you shouldn't. And for Tom's list : 3. Security issues - You need an audit trail that can differentiate exactly who did what and the moment you start doing things like this all you can say is that someone used that account.
    – Rob Moir
    Mar 17, 2010 at 19:44
  • +1 to both Tom and Robert here. The audit trail is very important, especially if the person is leaving against their will and does something naughty before they go. Mar 17, 2010 at 21:20
  • Since you have the date of the event and the date it was renamed also audited you know exactly who the account was assigned to at the time.
    – JamesRyan
    Mar 19, 2010 at 16:43
  • Also the old user folder/desktop often contains role relevant documents/programs etc. So whether it is better to keep that or not really depends how specialised or generic your users(and their roles) are in IT terms.
    – JamesRyan
    Mar 19, 2010 at 17:00

Yes, it is MS best practice to rename and reuse accounts for people doing the same role rather then delete and recreate them. You can change it in the users and computers snapin.

  • 2
    Do you have documentation to back the best practices claim? I was always taught that copying an account not renaming it was best practice.
    – Zypher
    Mar 17, 2010 at 18:23
  • It is asked on the MCSE! (Note that I said 'MS' best practice) The reasoning is a) you ensure they have the correct access according to their role (if someone changes role then it is easier to rename their account and create a new account for the new role) and b) I can't remember the exact details of it but when you delete users you leave security info behind so if you have a high account turnover it can cause problems with bulking that data out
    – JamesRyan
    Mar 19, 2010 at 16:56

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