Deactivating vs Deleting Users

There are a few key differences between deleting and deactivating a user: the ability to reactive the user, private folder retention, and how shared links and tasks are handled. We'll cover how deactivating or deleting a user impacts each of these and more to help you make the right choice.


Reactivate User

The primary difference between deactivating a user and deleting user is that deactivating a user means they can still be reactivated in the user menu. When a user is deleted, their data is permanently removed and there is no way to restore that user.


If you give your 3rd party contractors access to Egnyte and their current contract has ended, ask yourself if you plan to hire them for a different project in the near future. If the answer is "yes", deactivating the users will be the preferred option.


File Content

All content that is in shared folders remains, whether the user is deleted or deactivated.

Private folders and their content remain for deactivated users, but deleted users have their Private folders sent to Trash. We always recommend deactivating a user until you have a chance to review their Private folder for any content that should be moved to a Shared folder.

If you delete a user and realize you needed something that was in their Private folder, the content can be restored from trash.


The files are restored to the path /Shared/Files from Deleted Users.


When the folder and its contents are restored, the permissions to this folder will be inherited from the parent (Shared) folder.


If you do not want the same permissions to be applied, head to the new Files from Deleted Users folder, click Share and select Manage Folder Permissions from the drop-down.



The rules for deactivating or deleting a user with regard to links is explained in the My Links FAQ.

When a user is deleted, the admins will receive an email User Deprovisioning Report.


The Admin will have the option to delete all of the links permanently. The button in the email is operable for a week, but an Admin can always go to the Link Summary Report later to manually delete those links or through the Public API.

Groups & Roles

Deactivated users remain as members or owners of the groups that they are assigned to. 

Note: There is currently no indication that the user is deactivated in the menu. Those users can still be removed from the group but cannot be re-added.

Deleted users are permanently removed, and therefore are removed from the groups as owners or members.


Deactivated users still show under folder permissions but the user will be shown as Deactivated.


The deactivated user may be removed from folders where they exist, but they may not be re-added with permissions until they are reactivated. The users that are deactivated will not appear in any search boxes.

If a user is deleted they are completely removed from permissions. 


If an assignor user is deactivated and then subsequently re-activated, all the same notifications and emails that would be sent at the time or for a due date will be sent. Since there is no way to currently restore a deleted user, no subsequent task notifications are sent. In My Tasks, for any tasks where the assignor is deleted/deactivated, the user will still see the assignor name but will have Deleted or Deactivated next to the name.  

If the assignee user is deleted or deactivated, the assignor will get an email notification indicating that the assignee for the task has been deleted. Until the assignee is replaced, none of the other notifications will be sent because the task is dead if there is no assignee. Under My Tasks, the task will be available for viewing but the assignee will now be listed as Deleted or Deactivated. In addition, in the file preview, the task widget will show the user as being Deleted or Deactivated.  



When the first Admin user of the work group is deleted, deactivated, downgraded, or changed, the primary contact of the domain will be automatically updated to the next Admin user.



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