Change default drive: How do I change the default drive that my system will install programs on?

How do I change the default drive that my system will install programs on? I have Windows 7 on a small fast disc drive and have a second drive that I want to use as my primary drive for programs, storage, etc...
 

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Last updated October 25, 2018 Views 21,696 Applies to:
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How do I change the default drive that my system will install programs on? I have Windows 7 on a small fast disc drive and have a second drive that I want to use as my primary drive for programs, storage, etc...


Hi

Storing personal files, such as Music, Pictures, Videos, Documents, Email Store, and other Data is always recommended. Windows 7 makes this very easy. If you right click any of the default folders that store this data and select Properties/Location tab. You will see a Move Button that can be used to specify another drive to automatically store these files.

The bulk of the space on the system drive is used by these data files.

However, installing programs and applications to a different drive is not recommended. When you do this, many of the programs or applications files will automatically be installed on the System Volume, simply because they are hard coded to be placed in existing system folders and will not work from another drive.

Other reasons:

You may experience significant slowdowns in the performance of most programs and this will also nullify any increased speed benefit of having the system on the small, fast drive.
Creating system backups becomes a very complex procedure.
Depending on the program or application, some may simply refuse to install on any other volume.
Application compatibility can become a much more complex issue when installing older, legacy programs.

Hope this helps.

Thank You for using Windows 7


Ronnie Vernon MVP
MVP 1999 - Present
Windows Insider MVP

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Answer

Hi,

If you need to move data to other folders.

These methods should also work well in Windows 7.

How to Change the Default Location of Windows 7 User Folders (Check the Related Tutorials)
http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/18629-user-folders-change-default-location.html

How to Restore the Default Location of Windows 7 User Folders (Check the Related Tutorials)
http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/18583-user-folders-restore-default-location.html

How to Allow or Prevent Users to Move their User Folders to a New Location (Check the Related Tutorials)
http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/84818-user-folders-allow-prevent-moving-location.html

Move or Change Vista Documents, Pictures, Music, Videos, Games and Other Personal Folders Location
http://www.mydigitallife.info/2007/11/25/move-or-change-vista-documents-pictures-music-videos-games-and-other-personal-folders-location/

Redirect a folder to a new location (Windows 7)
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/Redirect-a-folder-to-a-new-location

Redirect a folder to a new location (Vista)
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Redirect-a-folder-to-a-new-location

Move your user files and folders to another partition
http://www.vista4beginners.com/Move-user-files-folders-to-another-partition

How to Restore a Missing Personal User Folder in Vista
http://www.vistax64.com/tutorials/148461-personal-user-folder-restore-missing-folder.html

Hope this helps.


Rob Brown - MS MVP - Windows Desktop Experience : Bicycle - Mark Twain said it right.
Rob Brown - Microsoft MVP - Windows and Devices for IT 2010 - current
Windows Insider MVP 2016 - current

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