Problems with "VirtualStore" paths

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Dirk Schwenke
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Problems with "VirtualStore" paths

Post by Dirk Schwenke » Sat Feb 09, 2008 5:05 pm


We have a user who had problems with the VirtualStore path introduced with Windows Vista:
- he had installed Notesbrowser and everything worked well
- then he changed the administrator securities functions, because he wanted to get rid of the many security question
- all Notesbrowser data was appearantly gone
- the recovery of a backup did not change anything

With help of our database finder: ... ?f=2&t=178

He could located his database and backup path here:
"C:\Users\HP\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\Notesbrowser"
"C:\Users\HP\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\Notesbrowser\Backup"

But on his hard disk it looks correct:
C:\Program Files\Notesbrowser\
C:\Program Files\Notesbrowser\Backup

What has happened and what to do?


The problem is, that Windows since Vista creates a "VirtualStore" in case the user has not enough rights to write to C:\Program Files and a program wants to write to this location. The idea behind this is, that no program should read or write data to or from C:\Program Files\.

But much programs read/write to it, so what does Windows do?

It internally changes the path:
"C:\Program Files\Notesbrowser" to somewhat
"C:\Users\xyz\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\Notesbrowser"

Much programs do read and write in its installation folder, also Notesbrowser can do this. Since the release of Noptesbrowser 2 this is optional (its the USB mode). But many old installations that are migrated to Notesbrowser 2 just saves its database exactly in the same folder where the executable "Notesbrowser.exe" is located. Our idea of the USB mode is to have all data in one single folder (e.g. C:\Program Files\Notesbrowser) - this makes it easy to move Notesbrowser to an flash stick and to have many parallel Notesbrowser installation, etc.

Unfortunately, this is adverse from the Windows concept.

For most users, there is no problem. But if you do not have full rights to write to "C:\Program Files\Notesbrowser" the VirtualStore will be used, probably without your knowledge. Be aware the we suspect that the feature "VirtualStore" maybe has bugs or is not consistent with the way the operation system usually addresses the file system. So it may lead to troubles and the bad behavior explained above.

What to do?
There are three solutions:
- change from USB mode to default mode where Notesbrowser saves in system default folders. Please read the manual how to do it
- give your User full rights to read and write to the installation folder (usually "C:\Program Files\Notesbrowser"):
(See here how to do this ... ?f=2&t=173 )

- if you can not have full rights or continue to have problems, and want to use the USB mode, move the whole Notesbrowser folder plus its database to a "neutral" path for example C:\Notesbrowser or so where you have full right and Windows cannot mess it up. Be sure you have full rights there. Speak to your Administrator if you have not.

For your Backup path, also select a plain simple path, for example D:\Notesbrowser-Backup. Or use a USB stick.

The Notesbrowser and Backup paths do not need to be on the first folder level, e.g. D:\Backups\Notesbrowser-Backup will perfectly work.

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Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2017 7:51 am

Re: Problems with "VirtualStore" paths

Post by Darcy1 » Mon Jun 26, 2017 7:55 am

For Windows 64 bit, I installed an application SyncBack SE for backup to copy the installation files VS from the SSD. So it saved me from trouble with PC.

Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Mar 02, 2019 8:24 am

Re: Problems with "VirtualStore" paths

Post by ruchika » Sat Mar 02, 2019 8:33 am

On the off chance that you can not have full rights or keep on having issues, move the entire Notesbrowser organizer in addition to its database to a "nonpartisan" way, for instance, C:\Notesbrowser or so where you have full right and Windows can't destroy it. Make certain you have full rights there. Address your Manager on the off chance that you have not.

For your Reinforcement way, likewise select a plain basic way, for instance, D:\Notesbrowser-Reinforcement. Or then again utilize a USB stick.

The Notesbrowser and Reinforcement ways don't should be on the principal envelope level, for example, D:\Backups\Notesbrowser-Reinforcement will superbly work.

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