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Dobbsjr

[Guide] Symbolic Links

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Posted · Original PosterOP

What are Symbolic Links anyways?

 Symbolic links, or symlinks, are basically advanced shortcuts, but don't think that they're the same. A shortcut simply points to the desired file/folder. A symlink, however, is a lower level pointer that is written into the file system.

 A symlink will make it appear that the linked file is actually there. However, once you click on it, it'll be directed toward the actual file location and run the data found there. 

 

Some common uses

  • Sync any folder with Dropbox or any other cloud services
  • Save space on SSD by linking user folder and/or game data to a secondary drive
  • Keeping files accessible from multiple locations rather than copy/pasting them

I use mine to sync my game saves to Dropbox and to place my Minecrafts mods in my hard drive, rather than keeping them on the %appdata% folder because I usually play with 200+ mods.

Creating Symlinks in Windows

  1. Download any version of Visual Studio(2005 or newer) 
  2. Download Link Shell Extension for your version of Windows

Regular Method:

 
  1. After installing the necessary software(see above), browse to the folder or file you want to create a symbolic link from.
  2. Right-click the folder/file and select "Pink Link Source". 
  3. Now go to the directory where you want to create a symbolic link.
  4. Right-click in the folder and select "Drop as" and choose the type of link you want. Symbolic link will create a soft link(shortcut), Hardlink Clone will create a hard link to the folder/file, Smart Copy will fully copy a folder containing symbolic links without breaking anything.

 

 

Command Line Method: 

 

This should work for any version from Vista up. 

 

  1. Open Command Prompt as admin
  2. Type mklink
  3. You should see a bunch of options like so: spnQD8Z.jpg

First, choose the correct prefix.  Mklink can create several types of links, including the following:

  • /D – creates a soft symbolic link, which is similar to a standard folder or file shortcut in Windows.  This is the default option, and mklink will use it if you do not enter a prefix.
  • /H – creates a hard link to a file
  • /J – creates a hard link to a directory or folder

Once you’ve chosen the correct prefix, you need to enter the path you want for the symbolic link, and the path to the original file or folder(note that the first path is to the symbolic folder you want to create, while the second path is to the real folder).

So basically:
 


mklink prefix link target

 

 


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Check out my post on symbolic links! || PSU ranking and tiers || Pokemon Thread

 

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This is really useful. Although can't you just change the install path when you install programs? I know Minecraft use %appdata% but all the modded minecraft lauchers can change that as far as i know. The new Minecraft launcher does not even use %appdata% anymore.

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Interesting! I will mark thou topic so i may research this knowledge!


It looks as if the peasants have risen up, and found swords!


But their sword's look a little short, if you know what I mean!


Good! The squires need training anyway!

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woop-woop

thank's been looking for a manual to do this for ages,

need this to link my music library to GTA ))))


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Posted · Original PosterOP

This is really useful. Although can't you just change the install path when you install programs? I know Minecraft use %appdata% but all the modded minecraft lauchers can change that as far as i know. The new Minecraft launcher does not even use %appdata% anymore.

Some programs will not install in anything other than C: drive. I do use mod launchers, but only for some modpacks. FTB and Curse Client have certain compatibility issues with a couple of mods I play.

 

Interesting! I will mark thou topic so i may research this knowledge!

Thanks


Did my post help you? Then make sure to rate it!

Check out my post on symbolic links! || PSU ranking and tiers || Pokemon Thread

 

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@GamerPro11 @Dapolish @DXMember @pcnoob99 

 

Updated topic with new methods.

NOICE !!!

 

also thanks for the comandline guide as well


CPU: Intel i7 5820K @ 4.20 GHz | MotherboardMSI X99S SLI PLUS | RAM: Corsair LPX 16GB DDR4 @ 2666MHz | GPU: Sapphire R9 Fury (x2 CrossFire)
Storage: Samsung 950Pro 512GB // OCZ Vector150 240GB // Seagate 1TB | PSU: Seasonic 1050 Snow Silent | Case: NZXT H440 | Cooling: Nepton 240M
FireStrike // Extreme // Ultra // 8K // 16K

 

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Done it before and it came back to bite me in the ass. Had a 120GB SSD where I wanted to save space, so I did that a few years back. After creating it, any new user accounts, files, and programs, will automatically go into the HDD. When you run it, the system will still think it's on the SSD. but they were some glitches, that had to be fixed by doing some registry changes. After that all was running fine and well. That was until Windows Update came along and was not happy with the setup. So all updates will refuse to install. Didn't notice at first because I installed the some updates before doing it. This was discovered a few months after I did it. Now I have to reverse everything that I've done, because I don't remember what registry was changed and you'll need a system restore before you even start doing this, in case something goes wrong, but my restore point got replace by new ones. The only fix I can do was to format and do a clean install. Basically all games, programs and setting the system the way I like it was all for nothing.  And to test it out, I purposely recreate it to see if Windows update still does the same thing and it still does, so I abandoned it and just manually save the files to where I want it to go. For programs, I just change the path during the installation.

 

Great tutorial, btw


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This is really useful. Although can't you just change the install path when you install programs? I know Minecraft use %appdata% but all the modded minecraft lauchers can change that as far as i know. The new Minecraft launcher does not even use %appdata% anymore.

Some programs won't let you change, like Office 2013


How to create a strong password

Size does not matter; it's how you use it

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Some programs, like drivers, can't installed on the C: drive via symlink. Important system programs should just be kept on the C: drive. :)

System drivers were never moved to another drive, they always stayed on C:\ Found out the reason why updates won't install is due to the User folder being missing from the C:\. Since I already move it to the D:\ and created that link. I can't set it back the way it was, unless I estore back to the day before I create those links. Too much of a hassle so I'll just do it the manual way for now. Much easier for me to manage.


Intel Xeon E5 1650 v3 @ 3.5GHz 6C:12T / CM212 Evo / Asus X99 Deluxe / 16GB (4x4GB) DDR4 3000 Trident-Z / Samsung 850 Pro 256GB / Intel 335 240GB / WD Red 2 & 3TB / Antec 850w / RTX 2070 / Win10 Pro x64

HP Envy X360 15: Intel Core i5 8250U @ 1.6GHz 4C:8T / 8GB DDR4 / Intel UHD620 + Nvidia GeForce MX150 4GB / Intel 120GB SSD / Win10 Pro x64

 

HP Envy x360 BP series Intel 8th gen

AMD ThreadRipper 2!

5820K & 6800K 3-way SLI mobo support list

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

System drivers were never moved to another drive, they always stayed on C:\ Found out the reason why updates won't install is due to the User folder being missing from the C:\. Since I already move it to the D:\ and created that link. I can't set it back the way it was, unless I estore back to the day before I create those links. Too much of a hassle so I'll just do it the manual way for now. Much easier for me to manage.

Oh okay.

Did my post help you? Then make sure to rate it!

Check out my post on symbolic links! || PSU ranking and tiers || Pokemon Thread

 

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