Preference transfer


I can't get my root preferences to transfer to my everyday user prefs. I know there are some things users can't do that root can, but I copy my entire root folder in private/var, stick it in Users and rename it my name (I've also set my system to show all hidden files), and not even my dock prefs copy over, nor my mail, or anything. I can see that I've copied the prefs over, but it doesn't seem to take. Is there some sort of database file I need to trash?