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In Windows, there’s always a file that stores settings linked to user profiles. This file, called as NTUSER.DAT, is responsible for a critical function. Without it, your Windows 10 operating system starts malfunctioning.

If you’re hearing about NTUSER.DAT the first time, you need to know more on this.


So, what exactly is this “NTUSER.DAT” file? Well, when you create a new profile on Windows, it needs to keep a track of all user settings and preferences.

An NTUSER.DAT file performs this function. It maintains a registry of all things related to user profiles. Each user profile has its own NTUSER.DAT file that keeps updating its data automatically.

An NTUSER.DAT file is essentially a registry file. Whenever you create a new user profile, Windows generates an NTUSER.DAT file for that profile. The file contains all the data related to a user’s activity. It registers the personalized settings of users with respect to the installed software as well as built-in Windows programs.

The size of an NTUSER.DAT file depends on the user’s activity. So, if you have installed software that takes up a considerably large space of your hard drive memory, your NTUSER.DAT file enlarges in size. Based on user activities and installed software, an NTUSER.DAT file can size over 180MB.

Is It Safe to Use NTUSER.DAT File?

In view of its vital function, an NTUSER.DAT file is essential for a proper working of Windows OS. However, the NTUSER.DAT file becomes a harmful file under certain circumstances.

Sometimes, an NTUSER.DAT files can risk the performance of your computer. It can possibly cause trouble when its size exceeds 100MB. Several users have reported that the NTUSER.DAT file slows down the performance of their systems.

But, is NTUSER.DAT file safe? Essentially, an NTUSER.DAT file is not harmful. Unless your user profile activities get scrambled, an NTUSER.DAT file doesn’t get corrupted.

You may term this risk as “NTUSER.DAT virus”, but there’s no such thing as that. You can delete an NTUSER.DAT file. You can change its properties as well. At the same time, you should not toggle its default nature for avoiding system failure.

Now, it is important for you to know where the NTUSER.DAT file is located. Once you know the location, you can access the NTUSER.DAT file to retrieve any information related user profile.

Where is NTUSER.DAT File Located?

In earlier versions of Windows, the NTUSER.DAT location is at the following address:

C:\Documents and Settings\user-name

For Windows 7/8/8.1 and Windows 10 users, the location of NTUSER.DAT file is at a different address, which is:


Based on your Windows version, you can locate the NTUSER.DAT file by entering the respective addresses on your File Explorer window.

How to Delete NTUSER.DAT File?

To delete NTUSER.DAT, Windows 10 user can follow these steps:

  • Depending on your Windows version, go to the location of NTUSER.DAT file
  • Click on the View tab and select Hidden items
  • Once you see the NTUSER.DAT file, right-click on it and select ‘Delete’
  • You’ll see a confirmation prompt
  • Click on ‘Yes’

Your NTUSER.DAT file has been deleted.

There are several reasons that signify the importance of NTUSER.DAT file in Windows 10.

However, you’ll mostly need it to maintain configurations and settings of your individual user profiles. Once deleted, you cannot retrieve an NTUSER.DAT file. Make sure you delete or modify this file with caution.

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