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Windows 7: Setting "My Documents" in XP-Mode to use Win7 Docs Dir


28 Feb 2010   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 and Ubuntu 9.10
 
 
Setting "My Documents" in XP-Mode to use Win7 Docs Dir

This is my first post on Seven Forums with a Solution, instead of me always asking for help.
I will attempt to list some pitfalls of sharing Windows 7 “Document” folders with XP-mode.

If not done correctly, Outlook 2003 and Word 2003 run in XP-Mode seem to change the registry when saving pictures.

How to Duplicate the problem (or how NOT to do it):

OK, so I'm running Windows 7 Ultimate and decide to run XP-Mode. XP-Mode starts up ok (so far).
Let's say I want Office to open and save files from my Windows 7 user’s documents directory.
This is because I want all my documents stored in one place. Sensible enough, right?

So I edited the "My Documents" icon on the desktop to point to "Q:\Users\username\Documents"
"Q" being the mapped letter name I've assigned to Windows 7's drive "C:" With me so far?
Apparently, this isn’t all you need to do if you’re in XP-Mode. Read on.

Everything works great, until I try to open the "My Pictures" or "My Music" folders.
Ok, so I attempt to fix this in the registry. JUST TO BE CLEAR: These are Registry Entries within the XP-Mode VM) I change the key:
"HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Folders\My Pictures"
to read: "Q:\Users\username\Pictures"
And everything works fine UNTIL I RUN OUTLOOK 2003 or Word 2003.

Let's say I get a cool aniGif in an Email, and I want to save it to "My Pictures"
I right click the aniGif and click "Save" and I get an error!

(See First Attachment)

Outlook keeps changing "Q:\Users\username\Pictures"
in the registry back to: "Q:\Users\Username\Documents\My Pictures" and then complaining that it can't access the folder! (actually I suspect it’s copying a value from the solution’s key at end)

MS Word is worse. If I’m in a document and try to imbed a picture inside, as soon as I open the menu “Insert\Picture\From file
I GET THE SAME DARN MESSAGE, ONLY IT WON’T GO AWAY AND SEEMS TO HOSE THE VIRTUAL MACHINE. IT PUTS YOU INTO AN ENDLESS LOOP TELLING YOU IT CAN’T ACCESS THE PICTURE DIRECTORY! TRYING TO CLOSE OUT OF XP-MODE WON’T WORK, BECAUSE IT WON’T START BACK UP PROPERLY. YOU CAN’T GET PAST THE LOGIN SCREEN. (See second Attachment, below)
The only way out that I found was to change my Virtual Machine settings "Close" action to "Turn Off" rather than "Shutdown." This apparently forced the virtual machine to shut down. When I turned the virtual machine on again it worked.

So, the solution? Changing The following registry paths is the PROPER WAY TO SHARE YOUR Windows 7 DOCUMENTS FOLDER.

If you’re going to change XP-Mode’s “My Documents” so that it points to Windows 7’s documents, You MUST do the following (In addition to changing the root "My Documents" location inside the My Documents desktop icon in XP-Mode):

Go to this key:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVErsion\Explorer\User Shell Folders

Change data from “Q:\Users\username\Documents\My Pictures”
to “Q:\Users\username\Pictures”

Change data from “Q:\Users\Username\Documents\My Music”
to“Q:\Users\Username\Music”

I hope this saves someone out there some headaches!
Best regards, SevenForum gang!
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Attached Images
  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Setting "My Documents" in XP-Mode to use Win7 Docs Dir




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