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Windows 7: Finding a program in Program Files (x86)

31 Aug 2011   #1

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
Finding a program in Program Files (x86)

Running Windows 7 Pro, 64bit.

We have a package of scripts and programs that comprise a custom application for OpenOffice 3.2 (do not want to upgrade OO at this point). We must support our package on Win XP, Vista and 7.

A bunch of our scripts start up OpenOffice by running the command:
C:\Program Files\ 3\program\soffice.exe (with arguments).

Works fine on XP. Fails on Win7 because the OO program installs itself into Program Files (x86). Even if I change properties of the installer file, in the Compatibility tab, to Win XP SP3, AND tell the installer to put it in C:\Program Files, Windows 7 still installs it into Program Files (x86).

We would LIKE to have the same script work on both flavors of Windows. I know we can modify our scripts to branch on which Windows, and choose two different paths to soffice.exe, but that's messy.

I can't solve it by creating a shortcut in Program Files, to the program in Program Files (x86); that's not allowed.

Is there some solution in Windows 7 to find the program no matter which place it lives? Like, a semi-intelligent environment variable for ProgramFiles that looks in one place, then the other? Ie.:
"C:\%ProgramFiles%\ 3\program\soffice.exe

Maybe I'm missing some easy solution, but so far I don't see it.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Aug 2011   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-Bit

The reason the programs plonk themselves in the Program Files (x86) must be because they are 32-bit applications.

By default, Windows 7 64-Bit installs 32-bit applications in the Program Files (x86) folder, whilst 64-bit applications reside in the Program Files folder.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Aug 2011   #3

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate

Unfortuantely the environment variable for that folder is called "%ProgramFiles(x86)%" to get to the 32 bit programs folder. And apparently only even exists on the 64 bit version of W7.

You may have to test for the existance of "%ProgramFiles(x86)%" and use if if it's defined, else use ""%ProgramFiles%"
My System SpecsSystem Spec

31 Aug 2011   #4

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

That's a pretty good suggestion. More direct than testing for flavor of Windows.

Thanks! (But I don't mark it solved yet)
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Finding a program in Program Files (x86)

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