The following a tip from WN reader Niko Mäkinen, used with permission. It describes how to configure the Internet Explorer home page when customizing the default user profile for deploying Windows using MDT 2010.
I was reading your article
http://www.windowsnetworking.com/articles_tutorials/Customizing-Default-User-Profile-Windows-7-Part4.html and I was having same issue with IE explorer homepage as you did, Issue #1: Configuring the IE Home Page.
After few days struggling I found a solution which works at least in my Fujitsu Lifebook laptops and IE9. It looks like that when first starting IE as new user it reads configuration not from default users profile but from file C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\SIGNUP\install.ins or C:\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer\SIGNUP\install.ins
What I did was configured all IE settings, exported new install.ins by gpedit.mcs and replaced old files by that. Now after sysprep all users get settings I want from that file.
Hope this was helpful and thanks for the great article. It helped me a lot in other issues.
Mitch Tulloch is a seven-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award and widely recognized expert on Windows administration, deployment and virtualization. For more tips by Mitch you can follow him on Twitter or friend him on Facebook.