Saturday, October 24, 2015

Change Default Program Files Installation Directory Location in Windows 7- 8 - 8.1

In Windows OS, by default, software get installed on your System Drive, usually C drive, in the Program Files folder. The typical path is normally in Windows 32-bit is C:\Program Files and in Windows 64-bit is C:\Program Files and C:\Program Files(x86). However, you can change the default installation drive and/ or directory by using a Registry hack.

Microsoft recommends the C:\Program Files for default installation destination. It’s a convention that ensures proper inter-operation between your program and the OS’s application and security models. So, once software programs are installed they go by default to C:\Program files on the computer.

Look for the value named ProgramFilesDir. by default, this value will be C:\Program Files. Edit the value to any valid drive or folder and Windows will use that new location as the default installation directory for new programs.

Windows uses the System Disk for installing any new applications, That is, if your Windows is installed on the C Drive, the default folder where all the applications you install would automatically show up as C:\Program Files, unless of course you change in manually while installing the application’s locations.

Change default Program Files directory

If you almost always prefer to NOT install on the System Disk, but instead on another partition, say, the D drive, then rather than changing the default location every time, you can edit the registry as follows:

Run Regedit and navigate to the following key:


Now in the right pane look for the value ProgramFilesDir and/or ProgramFilesDir (x86) depending on whether your Windows 8 is 32-bit or 64-bit.

Windows 64-bit

Windows 32-bit

Double click on it and in the box which opens up change its Value data from C:\Program Files to say, D:\Program Files.

Click Ok. Exit.

The default directory for installation of all you programs shall now be D:\Program Files. If you are Windows 64-bit user just like me, you may want to change the value of ProgramFilesDir and ProgramFilesDir (x86).

Microsoft does not support changing the location of the Program Files folder by modifying the ProgramFilesDir registry value. It states that if you change the location of the Program Files folder, you may experience problems with some Microsoft programs or with some software updates.

The Tech Zone
The Tech Zone

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