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Windows 7: changing ProgramData location?

05 Jul 2011   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit
changing ProgramData location?

is there a way to change ProgramData to another driver like D or E etc.. the one with C:\ProgramData (default) its normally hidden and some important files is stored in there its for backup saving purposes to avoid losing those data like if your drive C got missed up for some reason you end up reformatting drive C , i believe it can be changed in Registry like changing location of (Users)/Appdata folders, but i don't know how to find it there?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2011   #2

Windows 10 Pro (x64)

There is nothing important in ProgramData that would not be recreated by the various applications you install. It is just application configuration data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jul 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit

i see i guess its pointless then..but if anyone here know how to change it i would much appreciate it
My System SpecsSystem Spec

05 Jul 2011   #4
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

Right, all of your apps will recreate the program data when you use them. You'd gain nothing trying to move the folder, not harm anything by leaving it as is.:)

If you're concerned about the data there, make a back-up image of your system, and you'll have the data there in case things crash.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Sep 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ulitimate x64
You can change it here.

The default path is C:\ProgramData. It is stored here:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList\ProgramData

1) You can change your default ProgramData path to be an alternative drive. Although doing so, all new users that are created will use the new programdata path. So you may end up having two ProgramData folders at the end of the data.
2) Alternatively, you could use “NTFS Junction Points”. Not many people know of this, but a junction point is a way to force all programs that write to path (c:\programdata) to be redirected to (D:\ProgramData). This is how old programs designed for XP can easily work with Vista and Windows 7 new folder locations(Documents and settings replaced with Users).

So you could create a junction point specificically for the tmp directory that is created by the GR.
mkdir D:\ProgramData
robocopy /XJ /MIR "C:\ProgramData" "D:\ProgramData"
mklink /J "C:\ProgramData" "D:\ProgramData"

The downside is that windows update does not work well with program data on a separate drive.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Sep 2014   #6

Windows® 7 (64-bit)

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Lovejoy View Post
The default path is C:\ProgramData. It is stored here:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList\ProgramData
Thanks for this, you totally solved my problem.

I used that registry key to temporarily reassign %ProgramData% to C:\Users\<me>\AppData\Roaming, so that a program installer could stop crapping out on me because of inability to create the start menu shortcuts under the %ProgramData% Start Menu, for some reason. This way it created them under my %AppData% Start Menu instead, and completed successfully. I have yet to figure out what was blocking it, but in the meantime I wanted to get that program installed. So thx again, because you helped someone 3 years after posting that!

Btw, if anyone tries this workaround, you should change that registry value back to normal as soon as is feasible, because it affects other things too, things that are alright if it's for just a few minutes, but that you definitely wouldn't want to stay that way... like for one thing, all the Windows-related shortcuts, including the Administrative ones, disappeared from the Start Menu (the orb in the corner) while that registry key value was altered     ... so you'll definitely want to mod it back to default and then reboot.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 changing ProgramData location?

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