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How do you handle versioned portable app folders in terms of PATH link

When dealing with portable binaries that come in versioned folders, whose locations you want to add in your PATH environment variable: how do you approach the following example scenario?

You just downloaded and extracted ffmpeg-4.2.1-win64-static.

Do you ...

  1. RENAME the versioned folder before moving it to where you want, e.g. C:\Portable\CLI\bin\ffmpeg, then add a link to the version-stripped folder in your PATH variable.

... or ...

  1. KEEP the folder name (as-is) and move it to where you want, e.g. C:\Portable\CLI\bin\ffmpeg\ffmpeg-4.2.1-win64-static, then add the versioned folder in your PATH (necessitating the risk of frequent edits to the location in your PATH).

Question becomes relevant when it comes to updating the software. I find this to be a MAJOR pain in the butt when it comes to portable apps. Any workflow advice desperately appreciated!

Option 1, unless there is a reason to have multiple versions around.

1 Like

Yeah, that’s what I’ve been doing also. Problems often arise when updating since it’s hard keeping track of things too keep such as settings and customization options (.ini’s etc). But that’s the same regardless of doing 1) or 2) ... I use to compare updated/current folders with a Diff tool, but it’s often not a quick or pleasant experience. Wish all developers would adhere to some sort of standard practice (is there any?) for separating binaries/content and user configs, etc. in portable releases.)

I usually simply copy the new files over the old ones. Off the top of my head I don't remember any portable installation that would bring initial ini files that could threaten the ones already on the system.