I suggest you ...

Allow users to install entirely to another hard drive

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Allow a user to install *all* of Visual Studio to a drive other than the system drive. I have a very small SSD and find it infuriating that Visual Studio can only install a third to my mechanical drive and must install 4GB to my system drive.

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DeadMG shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

We expect to make significant progress on this front in the upcoming release. There are some components which must be installed to the system drive for various reasons – for example, Windows hotfixes and .NET Framework releases. But we think we will be able to do a better job of honoring the chosen location in the next release.

To give some transparency into the design process, one interesting wrinkle to this problem is third-party components that we install. If you choose to install Visual Studio to (say) D:\VS, where should we install something like Git for Windows or the Android SDK (if you select those components)? Should we install them into a subdirectory of D:\VS, even though other apps may use them? And should we attempt to secure the directory? C:\Program Files is only writeable by admin users, which presents a security boundary to rogue apps. Tough choices…

Thanks, as ever, for the feedback.

Tim Sneath | Visual Studio Team


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  • J commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    In the meantime as a short term fix can you stop removing our junctions.
    I have the Package Cache on d: through a junction.
    Every time Visual Studio updates it gets removed.
    Every SQL Management Studio update does the same and there seems to be lots of these.

  • Alexander of York commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Such MS thinking. Ever since DOS you guys can't think outside the C: prompt. You are part of MS! "C:\Program Files" is MS construct. You want the same sandbox? Make it! Don't let the alphabet scare you. C: is like D: is like Z: is like "My Effing Drive:" so where ever we want to install it, go ahead and put a "\Program Files" duplicate the security from any other "\Program Files" you find, say on the C: drive, and install just as you would have if you were still in your magical C: place.

  • Seif Hassine commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Still waiting for this, I'm struggling with 7GB of disk space left and windows 10 warning me that windows updates may not be installed..

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Absolutely necessary feature for portable devices (or enable removable disks to be converted to fixed disks).

  • Rutger commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Choose a disk (not a directory) and let the installer create D:\Program Files [(x86)] with write access for admin users only (copy the ACL from C:\Program Files [x86]) and use this as installation root.

  • Lancelot commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    The age where computers have 2 disk drives are more common now than say 4 years ago. One hard disk drive for other things. While one Solid State Drive for the operating system.

    It's the mobile age!

    Most manufacturers churn out laptops that have solid state drive and they barely got any space. So people resort to having an external hard drive to install necessary software required for their daily activity.

    The other point I'd like to make is that you guys are on the goal to nurture students like me in using your products and hope to make em stick to you in the future. Which is common business tactics in order to have long term relationship. Well student like me are using laptops that have solid state drive and hard disk drives, this is due to the manufacturing trend and along with the portability trend where people will bring their devices with them.

    Unlike you guys. We don't have large development infrastructures where you guys work. I believe most of your customers are medium to small teams which is becoming common these days. So I believe you best well support them.

    Here's an idea concerning the wrinkle. Can't you just make it possible for those third-party components to be plug n' play. By plug and play I mean look and listen for those components that you guys install on a certain path or folder when it is available the user can use it while it's not available user cant use it. Perhaps let the user specify where to install those third party things as well.

    If you guys are concern about securing proprietary things, can't you guys do some sort of key check. For example, I have installed VS in D:\ which is an external hard drive. Lets say I plug that in to another computer which is not mne. Well it would be tough luck because there is no software key in the other computers C:/ drive specific to that visual studio. Get what I mean?!

  • Tom commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Two ******* years and nothing? Not to mention this original post is already 7 years old. Sometimes you guys are just complete dumbasses. I literally cannot afford the room on my C drive. It's such obvious common ******* sense to be able to choose where to install it. You guys are the worst at listening to feedback.

  • Anthony commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Two years later to the day and still no resolution...great job Microsoft.

  • mroz commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Is it really so hard, to make some symbolic links from custom location path specified by user to the paths on sys drive needed by MS ?

  • Damon commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Can to install the Microsoft thing in my department choose directory, installed in a custom directory will occupy a lot of drive space, the Chinese people are very hate such installations, will directly discarded the IDE, while in other ides, can install to specify other drive, will gain more users

  • Catherine commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Interesting how many applications can be deployed as a standalone, Notepad++ for example, which can be "installed" anywhere and still operate (and of course, uses the treasured "components which must be installed to the system drive") but VS --while being just another application-- can only live and operate on the boot drive. I would hope to think MS is at least as capable as the developers of such excellent software.

  • Seriously? commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Wow... just wow, its been TWO ******* years since this is being "planned". Pull your finger out and stop ******* wasting time ffs, i have all the space i'll ever need on a 4tb hdd and yet i'm basically forced to install 49gb on my 60gb os only ssd? Are you for ******* real right now?

    "Thanks, as ever, for the feedback" Lol...

  • Tyler commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    My boot drive is a 128GB SSD and I don't have room for 90% of Visual Studio's install files. Please fix this so I can install on my secondary 1TB HDD!

  • Da commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Seriously?! In a year and a half you can't figure this out? A base install of 49GB - 43 to the C drive, 6 to the D drive. C is the SSD for boot and system, not massive apps. Didn't MS have this figured out by the time of NT 4.0?

    As to those questions that seem to befuddle you . . . install them into separate directories. You don't have to shove everything into the VS or Prog Files directories.

  • NyoSan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Always waiting for it. I hope it will be done for the next VS version because this is horrible for tiny SSD users.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This is ridiculous. I think at this point it's pretty **** clear the developers don't give two ***** about user feedback.

  • Pedro Henrique commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Fukcing 2018 and I have to install the majority of my installation on the ******* C: drive.
    This suggestion was made six and half years ago, and got acknoledged saying it would be the plan for next releast 2 years ago, what's the excuse now, Microsoft?

  • Damian commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    knock, knock, 2018 here.

    >Where should we install something like Git for Windows or the Android SDK (if you select those components)?
    Ask on the Installer.

    >And should we attempt to secure the directory?
    Ask on the Installer.

  • Joshua Williams commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I use my SSD as a boot drive and cannot in any way, shape, or form make room to install the nearly 2/3 of Visual Studio on my SSD without completely reformatting my drive and reinstalling windows on my hard drive. So I take it upon myself to download the Mac version on my Macbook, only to figure out Microsoft does not allow the Mac version of Visual Studio to create C++ documents, even with all the support the community has put forth to make C++ available to Mac users.. So the only way I can get my work done for my C++ programming course is if I format my drives on my PC and reinstall windows on my HDD. Ridiculous. It shouldn't be like this.

  • Timo Hellmund commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    120 GB SSD users still cannot install VS and Xamarin due to limited hard drive space (I got a 2TB HDD for data though)... just saying. At that, why does a development tool like this still need + 30 GB in the year 2017 when Unity3D only takes 3 GB with all its functionality? Even Unreal Engine 4 takes less and can be installed on any hard drive besides C: ...

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