How to Fix the Desktop is Unavailable in Windows 10?

Content Writing

How to Fix the Desktop is Unavailable in Windows 10?

When logging in Windows 10, we may not find any files on the desktop since it is completely blank. An error notification appears, saying “C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Desktop is unavailable”.

This means the Desktop folder is missing or cannot be accessed. Naturally, we may be panic and want to know if the desktop files are all deleted.

Don’t worry and this is a common error that can be fixed. Before troubleshooting it, we should make sure if the disk is connected correctly. If the location is on a network, check if the internet is connected. If you will not able to detect the location, it may be deleted.


Now, let’s see how to fix system profile desktop is unavailable.

Copy the Desktop Folder

To fix the issue, we can try to copy the Desktop folder by following these steps:

  1. Go to File Explorer, click View,and check Hidden items.
  2. Type C:\users\Default\ to the address bar and press Enter. Now, copy Desktop folder.
  3. Go to C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile and paste the folder.


Restore the Desktop Folder

system32\config\systemprofile\Desktop Is Unavailable error may appear when the Desktop folder is corrupt. We can fix the issue by restoring the folder.

  1. In File Explorer, expand This PC, right-click Desktop and choose Properties.
  2. Under the Location tab, click Restore Default.
  3. Save the change by clicking Apply and then OK.


Run System File Checker

Corrupt system files may lead to the error “C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Desktop is unavailable”. To scan for the corruption and fix the damaged system files, we can try System File Checker (SFC).

  1. In Windows 10, type cmd to the search box, right-click the result, and choose Run as administrator.
  2. Type sfc /scannow and press Enter to run the command.
  3. Wait for a few minutes until the scan finishes and exit the CMD window.


Check Desktop Location Through Registry Editor

According to users, “C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Desktop is unavailable” can be fixed by checking the desktop location via Registry Editor.

  1. Open the Run window by pressing the Win + R keys, type the Regedit in the box and hit enter or click OK.
  2. Go to Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders.
  3. Double-click Desktop and make sure its value data is C:\Users\%USERNAME%\Desktop or %USERPROFILE%\Desktop.
  4. Save the change and restart our PC.


Fix Unavailable Desktop via Windows Update

If the Windows update installation isn’t completed yet or it isn’t finished successfully, we may get the system profile desktop is unavailable error. To fix this issue, we can run a Windows update.

  1. Get Media Creation Tool and create a bootable USB drive.
  2. Go to access the drive in File Explorer by pressing Win + E.
  3. Double-click exe and choose Upgrade this PC now.
  4. Then, perform the update by following the on-screen wizards.


Create a New User Account to fix the Desktop is unavailable

  1. Run the CMD as administrator.
  2. Type control userpasswords2 and press Enter.
  3. Choose Add and click Sign in without a Microsoft account (not recommended).
  4. Click Local account and enter the user name, password & password hint, and click Finish.
  5. Choose Administrator under the Group Membership tab and save the change.
  6. Reboot the computer and sign in to the new account. Next, remove all the old data to the new account.


Roll back to the Previous Version of Windows 10

Windows 10 rollback can be another solution to fix the unavailable desktop error. If we cannot find a desktop, we can try this method.

  1. Launch the Windows Settings app by pressing Win + I.
  2. Navigate to Update & Security > Recovery.
  3. Under the Go back to the previous version of Windows 10 section, click Get Started.
  4. Follow the instructions and finish the rollback process.


Reinstall Windows 10

If all of the above methods cannot help to fix “C:\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Desktop is unavailable”, we can only reinstall Windows 10.


Prepare an installation disc or USB drive, boot the PC from it and use the Windows Setup tool to start the Windows installation by following the on-screen instructions.


Suggestion: Back up Windows

Now we should have removed the unavailable desktop error. After that, it is better to create a system image for the operating system. Troubleshooting is troublesome but if we have a system backup, we can easily restore our computer to a normal state.


To do this work, we can use MiniTool ShadowMaker, a professional and free backup software for Windows 10/8/7. It can help us to back up the Windows operating system, files, folders, disks, and partitions.

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *