Copy all user settings to another user

i have 2 users, one with root privileges and one daily user without root for more security

what annoys me is there doesn’t seem to be any way to export all my settings and then import them into another user.

i want to match extensions, fonts, themes, dock, keyboard shortcuts etc.

this would also save me a ton of time if i nuke and re-pave a new system to get back to my standard state which can actually take some time to set up all these preferences.

Of course there is.

If you want one users settings to be exactly the same as another user then you can simply use sudo and copy everything from the home directory of the one you have configured to the other users home directory. Then a simple chown step will finish the config.

If there are planned differences there will be more work to keep some of the settings unique.

An easier way is to make certain the /home partition is separate from the system partition so if you have to nuke and reinstall the system the users home directories and data is not affected. This way once everything is configured for both users it does not get wiped out when the system is nuked.

Backups are also important for this purpose.


ok that makes sense. i guess i could just copy all the ‘.’ files in the home (source) directory if there are already files in say Documents etc that I do not want (can ignore all those folders). will test this out with a new user soon…

this probably wouldn’t solve installing extensions or apps tho in a full OS reset but would certainly save me some time!

one reservation i have with full backups is they will bring back any pernicious code i may have picked up by accident.

i will also look to see if i can make a home partition after the fact? i just used fedoras default settings as this is my first re-visit of fedora in many years.

By default the newer fedora releases use btrfs file system and create a /home subvolume. It is possible to do a reinstall and reuse that existing subvolume.

As far as backups.
A good backup plan has multiple restore points so it is possible to restore everything before a certain time and selectively restore things from any time. The backup plan has to account for problems such as malicious code and how to recover.

1 Like

interesting! i was looking for a /home logical volume never knew about btrfs subvolumes and now i do see that the installer did create a /home subvolume.

not to beat a dead horse and most likely i’m just paranoid but one will never know when exactly a trojan or other malicious code might enter the system so backups would be total guesswork to when the system might still be clean. i guess you could backup right after initial creation of the OS…

thanks for your clear answers @computersavvy