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How to Fix “Private Key or User Profile is inaccessible”



How to Fix "Private Key or User Profile is inaccessible"

Are you getting the “Private Key or User Profile is Inaccessible” on Windows? Today we take a look at why and how you can fix this error.

One of many problems occurs when users try to import a private key from a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate file into the certificate store on the local PC. Many users report receiving an error message stating that the profile or private key is unavailable due to the lack of a cryptographic service provider on the PC.

This will give you information on how to change the registry. So before you do this, make sure that you have made a proper backup of the directory. There are a few tips that can solve the problem; they are listed here one by one.

What causes the “Private Key Or User Profile Is Inaccessible” Error?

After investigation, and some help from Microsoft, there are 3 main reasons why this error can occur. There may be other reasons, but these are the most common, and likely why you are also having the issue.

  • You do not have sufficient permissions to access the following folders:
    C:\Documents &
    SettingsAll UsersApplication DataMicrosoftCryptoRSAMachineKeys
  • There is a third-party registry connection that prevents IIS from using encryption.
  • You are remotely connected to the computer via a Terminal Services session, and the user profile is not stored locally on the server that has Terminal Services enabled.

As you can see, these reasons may not make much sense to you, or anyone. But today we are trying to take a look at why and how we can go about fixing this.

How To Fix “Private Key Or User Profile Is Inaccessible” in Windows

Certificate Import Wizard Error for User Profile is inaccessible
Message to Claim Image

Fixing the Private Key or User Profile is Inaccessbile error can be tricky, but hopefully one of the below fixes will help you fix this quickly.

Reset permissions for the MachineKeys folder

Resetting the permissions on the MachineKeys folder will reset the permissions needed to access the user profile or private key. To do this, complete the following steps.

  1. Right-click on the MachineKeys folder.
  2. On the Security tab, click the Advanced button.
  3. Click View / Edit
  4. Select the Reset permissions for all child objects check box and enable sharing of legacy permissions.

Remove a connection from the third-party registry

  1. Press Windows + R
  2. Type regedit.exe (The registry editor will open)
  3. If the following registry subkey exists, delete it:
    HKEY_USERSDefaultSoftwareMicrosoftCryptographyProvidersType 001.

Save the User Profile Locally (On the Device) for the “Terminal Services” Session

In this case, ask your IT administrator to simply move the user profile to the server that has Terminal Services enabled. You can also use roaming profiles.
If you follow these steps, you can now import the SSL private key certificate file into the local computer’s private key certificate store without encountering further error messages.

How to Fix "Private Key or User Profile is inaccessible"
Image Source: Pixabay


All in all, we hope that this guide has helped you fix the User Profile or Private Key is Inaccessible in Windows. This issue can be quite difficult to resolve, but we hope that one of the above fixes has worked for you.

Let us know down in the comments of this guide, and make sure to explore our site for any other issues you might have! Take a look today, and let us know if you need help with any other errors you facing!

If you are still having issues, it might be worth contacting Microsoft Support, who can provide dedicated and specific support for your issues!

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