When you import the user profile data from an external source, such as Active Directory, you will want to keep the imported data up-to-date with the values maintained by the external source. The following table describes the three types of imports supported by MOSS 2007. You can choose one or a combination of these import types that best suits the requirements of your organization.
Full import populates the MOSS 2007 User Profile store by creating properties and populating them with values from the external source. A full import is typically performed when you set up the User Profile store. You can also use full import to replace all existing user profile data with the most current values available on the external source.
Incremental import can be used after at least one full import has been performed. Changes made to the external source after the last user profile import operation are replicated to the User Profile store during an incremental import. Therefore, incremental imports are more efficient to perform than full imports.
You can create schedules for the import operation to update the data in the User Profile store according to the changes in the external data source. You can schedule both full imports and incremental imports. For example, you can schedule a full import once per week and incremental imports on a daily basis.