Question re Software Install Location

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Tabvla

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Typically when you install a program on a x64 machine it locates the exe's, dll's and other program files in either the Program Files or Program Files (x86) Folders.

I recently installed a popular piece of software, from a well-known manufacturer, on a W8.1 machine and I note that no part of the installation is in either of the program Folders. The software installed all its files in the Folder - Users > username > AppData > Local.

What benefit or purpose would there be in doing this?

From the User perspective it is a pain. On a machine where there is more than one User the software has to be installed for every User separately. In a business environment more than one User per machine, is often the case.

Another unusual aspect of the install was that when logged-in as a Standard User; at the start of the install Windows did not bring up the UAC message, even though UAC is active and working on the machine.

Is all of this just a little odd or is this normal behaviour that I have not as yet encountered previously....:confused:

T.
 

Phantom010

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A little more info on that:

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/what-appdata-folder

However, that's a typical location for malware to install. That's why it's important to keep control of what's trying to execute from that folder.

Another unusual aspect of the install was that when logged-in as a Standard User; at the start of the install Windows did not bring up the UAC message, even though UAC is active and working on the machine.
That's when Simple Software-Restriction Policy comes in very handy. I love that program!
 

DaveA

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This just may be a "Single user" program. Also some of the older not 100% Windows compliant programs would install in a folder at the root of the drive.

It would help us, if you were state the program name and version and even a link to it?
 

Tabvla

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Phantom, thanks for the links to the MS info and the IWR website.

The software manufacturer replied as follows to my question....

..... the software doesn't require admin to install which is why it installs in the AppData folder. .....
That is an answer....? And that was the entire answer - really helpful NOT...:(

I am very close to running uninstall and looking for an alternate solution.

T.
 

valis

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if a software maker is a bit dodgy about their software, AND you installed it anyhow? Generally not a great combo, just fyi.....
 

Tabvla

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Valis wrote : ...... if a software maker is a bit dodgy about their software, AND you installed it anyhow? Generally not a great combo, just fyi.....
Usually I would absolutely agree...... but.... firstly, there was no way of knowing that the software would install in AppData before the install; secondly the software gets great reviews (I always research); thirdly the software is rated compatible with W8.1 by Microsoft compatibility checker and finally I did check the downloaded exe with MBAM and an AV before continuing with the install.

DaveA wrote : ....... It would help us, if you were state the program name and version and even a link to it? ....
No problem with providing the info (see below).

My original question was sort-of generic, because I had not experienced this before, and wondered if this was a common practice that I was unaware of. I have installed more software than I will ever remember on countless machines going back to W95 and I have never previously seen this behaviour.

Software Info

Screencast-o-Matic : http://www.screencast-o-matic.com/

T.
 

valis

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No clue, I've never heard of it. the WOT shows it as fine, though, and that's usually good enough for me.
 

Triple6

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Phantom, thanks for the links to the MS info and the IWR website.

The software manufacturer replied as follows to my question....

..... the software doesn't require admin to install which is why it installs in the AppData folder. .....

That is an answer....? And that was the entire answer - really helpful NOT...:(

I am very close to running uninstall and looking for an alternate solution.

T.
That answer does kinda make sense though, it allows users without administrator privileges to install it, I think GotoMyPC does the same thing. It may not be common practice for most programs but it's not unheard of either.

I can't find the Microsoft article at the moment but the answer here explains it quite well: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/...-to-install-user-specific-apps-which-modify-t
 

Tabvla

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Rob, thanks for your reply and the link to the info on Stackoverflow - seems as though this is an area of unnecessary confusion... :(

I am doing an evaluation of screencast software for a client and need to make a recommendation as to which package will best serve their purpose (software training). The really annoying thing about SOM is that, when it comes to encoding the video it outperforms the competition by a factor of at least 4. For example, the same screen-capture sequence, takes 5 times longer to convert to AVI or WMV using Microsoft Expression Encoder and other screencast software returns similar or worse results. This is a big issue when the tutorial video is around 10 minutes. On a standard business machine (which the client will be using for this purpose), MEE takes almost an hour to create a 10 minute video whereas SOM takes 8 minutes - and there is no discernable difference in the quality of the final product.

And yes, I do agree that the answer from the manufacturer makes sense, however it would have been helpful if they at least explained why they had decided on this method of installation and given some reassurance about the reasoning behind circumventing UAC. I cannot recommend this software to a client unless I understand the thinking behind this decision. The client is not stupid, they will ask me what is going on and I need to have an accurate, informed and correct answer - the answer provided by the manufacturer will not do.

T.
 

DaveA

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I see that there is a "Paid" version of this program, you might check and see if EACH user must buy a copy, or can ALL users install it using the same install copy?
 

Tabvla

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I see that there is a "Paid" version of this program, you might check and see if EACH user must buy a copy, or can ALL users install it using the same install copy?
Seems like each User is a separate install but the Product Key can be used in terms of the License that is purchased.

However..... I have given up on SoM Support. I just don't like the abrupt, almost rude, response.

Today I am testing....

ActivePresenter v 5 by AtomiSystems

Microsoft Expression v 4 SP2

CamStudio

I will post the results of these tests in a different Thread.

T.
 
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Starting with Windows 7, only an administrator can install apps to "Program Files". Limited users have to choose another location. It's just the way it is now.

The new standard default folder for Limited users is AppData, as you've discovered. Think of it as the new "Program Files" from Win 7 and later. :)

Many software companies use AppData now as the default, including ours and big names like Google Chrome. It's nothing to fear. If it bothers you, just change AppData to another location during Setup and you're good to go. (y)

Another unusual aspect of the install was that when logged-in as a Standard User; at the start of the install Windows did not bring up the UAC message
The Setup.exe must be created to actually prompt for UAC.
 

Tabvla

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AlomWare wrote : ..... The new standard default folder for Limited users is AppData, as you've discovered. Think of it as the new "Program Files" from Win 7 and later ...... Many software companies use AppData now as the default, including ours and big names like Google Chrome. It's nothing to fear......
Thanks for your reply, but.... sorry I disagree, it is everything to fear.

The very last thing that any IT manager wants is for Users to install software on their workstations. This is an absolutely guaranteed method to really screw-up any IT system. Most computer Users are clueless about security. They are accountants, or buyers, or sales people..... they are not supposed to be IT pros.

I would never recommend software to a Client if that software installed in AppData and if it could be installed without UAC permissions. Security of Client's systems is my #1 test priority when evaluating software on behalf of a Client.

Needless to say, but in this specific case, SoM does not meet the minimum criteria for system security.

T.
 

Phantom010

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AppData is a known location for malware executables, and temp files. IMO, nothing should be installed from that folder without UAC permission.
 
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