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Feature Request: Drive-Letter Variable Settings in Options

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karlm
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Feature Request: Drive-Letter Variable Settings in Options

Hi all,

Thank you for the wonderful site, forum and resources for all these years.

I searched the forum and read many threads about Drive-Letter Variable Settings. So that when a USB memory stick or other device is given a new drive letter on a new computer, the Portableapps.com launcher's apps paths point to it.

I saw various responses from 2008 onwards:

Relative paths
.bat files
Total Commander variables
other methods

But really the app should have this as a setting. So when launched on a new computer, there should be a button next to options or anywhere on panel:
"Change Drive Letter"

Then a drop down menu or text-input-box lets one choose the new drive letter the memory stick or whatever device has been assigned on the new computer.

Then it should remap all apps' paths to the new drive letter.

This should not be hard. On initial install instead of hard-assigning drive letter, say C: (for C:/PortableApps), it can assign all paths to a variable which in an ini file can be set to C: or D: or whatever it installed initially.

Then on another computer it can be reset by the user as an option to a new Drive-Letter, say G: H: Z: or whatever the new computer assigned the portable device as.

If this functionality or setting is already there please let me know. I searched quite a while online and in settings too.

Please do not tell me to use .bat files or relative paths or other methods. This is a feature request from the devs and please lets stay on topic. I really think this should have been done years ago.

Thanks again for al the wonderful work and services for years.

John T. Haller
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PA.c Launcher

The PortableApps.com Launcher, which is the AppNamePortable.exe launcher included with portable apps to handle portablization, includes numerous environment variables to assist with both locating the current path of the app itself, its files, and any other apps or files on your drive as well as the previous paths for those same things to assist with adjusting paths within settings files from the old path to the new one. The PA.c Launcher can be used with your own apps as well and can be downloaded as a pre-compiled PortableApps.com Application Template in zip form from the Development page with follow-along commenting in the configuration files to assist you.

If you're referring to the PortableApps.com Platform (our launcher menu, backup/restore, app store/updater, etc), it doesn't make anything available at present to assist with portablizing apps but will in a future release.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

karlm
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Thank you for your reply John

Thank you for your reply John. I looked at the pages you linked and also bookmarked them. Yes I did mean the launcher. It seems the devs working on the launcher can easily incorporate the already existing environment variables to add the feature I requested into the launcher app in one or both modes. That is really what I requested, a feature added to the launcher app. In fact what documentation you referenced, as a way to modify vars to change current new drive path, is exactly why I asked for the simple new feature. Not despite, but because of the current situation.

Secondly, my requested feature procedure(s) would not only do away with messing about with variables every time one sticks a stick/device into a new computer but also fixes the path for ALL APPS, not just the one one needs to run. In fact it is easier to just navigate to the folder and double click the exe file than to mess about with variables. Which is what people do. But my requested feature would negate the need not just for one but for all apps' new path.

In essence one of the points of the launcher app if not the main one, and lets face it also of portable apps, is to have the ability to stick the device in and easily choose and run an app. The simple request does that. This function process should have been done years ago IMHO.

Finally if this thread is posted in the wrong subforum, I hope a mod can move it where it should be. I posted it here as some older discussions on path environments of the launcher app were in this subforum.

However my feature request is not a query about environment vars, bat file workarounds, relative path workarounds, Total Commander & other parameter workarounds etc. etc., which I referenced myself in the OP myself and asked not to be diverted onto as off topic. My request is a specific feature request.

Thanks again for your post and reply.

John T. Haller
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Changing a drive letter or redirecting paths with junctions requires admin rights. Users that use multiple computers where they cannot already permanently assign a specific drive letter to a device will not be able to do this.

Changing a drive letter in this fashion is also not necessary for portable apps. They already work regardless of where you are running them from.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

karlm
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Hi John,

Hi John,

Thanks for your comment, quote:
"Changing a drive letter or redirecting paths with junctions requires admin rights. Users that use multiple computers where they cannot already permanently assign a specific drive letter to a device will not be able to do this.

Changing a drive letter in this fashion is also not necessary for portable apps. They already work regardless of where you are running them from."

Now, regarding the two points you made, you are wrong on both counts.

1) I am not asking to reassign drive letters, permanently assign names to drives on new computers etc. as you falsely claim and is obvious to all. As I said in OP, the user sees which drive-letter the new computer has assigned to the device we stick in. The user drops-down the menu option of drive letters (or types in option text-box) and chooses the correct drive-letter now assigned to the portable device. Then the program takes assigns all the apps' paths drive-letter variable to that new parameter. What you are talking about is completely irrelevant to what asked for.

2) "Changing a drive letter in this fashion is also not necessary for portable apps & They already work"? What is that got to do with a feature request? I'm sure Stalin, Hitler, al-Baghdadi & Kim-Jong-Un talked like this to people but apart from being rude, you are wrong again. I did not say they do not work or where they are running from. I made a feature request, which you never understood.

This is why I said in OP please lets stay on topic of my feature request. Not workarounds (I listed myself), or saying do enviro parameter changes for each app sticking your device in anew PC, and then do that for all apps you want to use like John said then when he is proven wrong, changes the subject and puts words in my mouth and finally says we are in my clan's utopia & promised land already and shut the hell up anyway. Oh what fun.

John T. Haller
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Change What?

So, what exactly are you proposing to change? Every app stores its settings in a different way. That's why the PortableApps.com Launcher works the way it does. You can't just 'change' the drive letter for an app. You need to know what the drive letter as well as other relative paths were before, what they are now, what files need updating, and how they should be updated. That's what the PortableApps.com Launcher does now.

Explain what exactly you are asking for. Saying 'change the drive letter for all apps' is meaningless from a technical standpoint.

Also, please stop being rude. 'Play nice' is a strictly enforced forum guideline here.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

karlm
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Hi John,

Hi John,

I wrote tons & you take a short sentence and say you don't understand what I mean! I think most of others do. There is also tons of debates about the same problem and multi lame workarounds.

Bu then you said you knew exactly what I meant! So I don't know what changed suddenly for you. I don't think you read the OP properly, most see what I mean.

Every app's .exe (or com or bat) file is mapped to be launched. Instead of initializing by hard-assiging the drive-letter, a variable can be set for the drive letter which is read fro the ini file. For example it can be C: on install.

If the memory stick is assigned a different drive-letter on a new computer, say G:, the user can click on the drop-down option and choose G:. Then the drive-letter variable which was set C: from ini file changes it's value to G: Then all the apps' paths will point to the correct new path starting with G:.

I played nice, very nice. You went on about enviro vars when I said that & other lame workarounds were not what I was talking about in OP. Then you put words in my mouth saying assigning PERMANENT drive letters (opposite of what I said) etc. Then finally said everything is perfect and nothing needs changing and ignored everything I said and basically for me to shut the hell up. Each position in contradiction with your other comments. That was not nice. I suggested a feature and asked several cumbersome workarounds or other off-topic unrelated talk to be avoided from 1st post. I ended up with a whole lot of that, accusations of not understanding, then being told how things are around here and the app is already the second coming of whatever messiah etc.

I am going to code something myself.

Good luck pal, I don't have time for this uncivil attitude dominant here. And you should really appreciate the patience of those around you, really. Best wishes to you.

GOOD BYE.

John T. Haller
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Confused

I'm still confused. What you're explaining it already done by the PA.c Launchers. Every one of them must be specially configured to work with each individual app since each app uses different files to store data and stores it in a different way. We do this for all the apps we package.

I'm not sure what it is you're suggesting. How would changing a G to a C in a single INI file affect the actual stored settings of the app itself? How would it update its internal INI files, XML files, any JSON storage, sqlite stores, etc?

None of this is personal. It's technical.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

Ken Herbert
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Just to clarify something here

Apologies if you think this is off-topic, but it certainly seems like there is some confusion here and I just want to go back to basics to clear it up.

The Platform is the on-screen menu from which you launch the apps. The Launcher (that John is talking about) is the behind-the-scenes executable that handles portability for each individual app and that you never actually see or interact with unless there has been a problem in launching the app.

You said you are talking about the Launcher, but from your original post it sounds like you are talking about the Platform since you are talking about adding buttons to a panel.

Drive letter changing for an app's settings are handled by the Launcher for each app. It knows which drive letter it was last run from, and according to the portabilization configuration set up by the PortableApps developer who made the app portable, it updates the necessary settings to the new drive letter it is now being run from. There is no interaction needed from users in any way because it is all automatically handled behind the scenes.

If it is the Platform you are actually talking about, there is no need to add an option to change the drive letter - it would be needlessly requiring action from the user when the functionality is already handled by the app's Launchers.

If it is the Launchers you are talking about, it is already handled, plus there is no user interface in which to implement a button/function like that.

If I am completely on the wrong track here, I apologise, but hopefully I have cleared up some of the confusion here.

the developer formerly known as winterblood

3D1T0R
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Just a little clarification.

Also, I'd like to point out that John isn't being rude, he's having difficulty understanding what you mean, and he's trying to understand you and inform you of the issues associated with what he thinks you're asking for.

Please note (as Ken said) the "Launcher" and the "Platform" are completely separate programs with very different purposes. The "Launcher" has no graphical interface (except when there are errors, in which case it shows error messages, that's all). The graphical menu which shows a list of apps is referred to as the "Platform", and does not alter the settings of the apps that are launched in any way, so the functionality you're requesting doesn't really belong there, however John made mention that "it doesn't make anything available at present to assist with portablizing apps but will in a future release", so apparently John intends to add some functionality similar to what you're asking for at some point. Also, just as a point of clarification, there is no need (no matter where you intend for this feature to be placed) for a drop-down menu for manually choosing which drive letter is currently being used, as the Platform and Launcher are both able to get that information without user input.

Finally, if you do code something to do what you want prior to John adding a feature that satisfies your request to the Platform, then please post it back here for the community.

~3D1T0R

karlm
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OK guys, thanks for the

OK guys, thanks for the explanations. I am away at the moment and do not have progs & launcher on my stick (just data) but will try when I get back. If I do code anything, as asked will post on forum. BTW my stick is a dual port with both USB for PC and Type-C for the phone, it's not a memory stick (I leave them all in the drawer these days). It is not the pricey Sandisk Ultra Duo type either, it's just a micro-SD card reader. That way instead of bulky mem sticks I just carry the SD cards which take up no space. You can duct tape them to the reader. There is also a four pronged reader (+8pin & Micro-usb) but it is bulky and cross shaped which I also retired, not good on my multi-mini gadget keyring. The dual card readers (USB A + Type-C OTG) go from about $10 to $30. But there is a new model with protective guard for the little Type-C now just over a dollar ($1.50sh) delivered on ebay from a few Asian countries. That's my tip right now, I got other tips which I might post later. Busy looking at gimbals for Panasonic GH5 right now. For the stick search ebay for "OTG Type-C To USB 3.1 Micro SD TF Card Reader Adapter For Android Phones Tablets" and always go for silver on your keyring be they the rechargeable micro flashlights (check candlepower & other flashlight forums) or mini knives, micro tools etc. etc. Best wishes.

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