I have a 240GB SSD with Windows 10 installed. I want some of my most frequently played games on this drive, but I am unsure which directory to put them in. Should I install x64-bit games in C:\Program Files (x86), C:\Program Files, or C:\Games\GameFolder?
You can install x64-bit games in either C:\Program Files or C:\Program Files (x86). C:\Games\GameFolder is also a valid option. It is a matter of personal preference and organization.
- The “Program Files” and “Program Files (x86)” directories are the default locations for installing programs in Windows.
- The “(x86)” directory is intended for 32-bit programs and the regular “Program Files” directory is intended for 64-bit programs. However, many programs can be installed in either directory regardless of their bit architecture.
- The “C:\Games\GameFolder” is a custom directory that you created and can be used to store your games as well.
- Ultimately, the choice of where to install your games is up to you, and it depends on how you prefer to organize your files. Some people like to have all of their games in one location for easy access, while others prefer to have them spread out across different directories.
Should I install x64 bit games on C:\Program Files (x86), C:\Program Files or C:\Games\GameFolder?
Program Files folder is a protected directory, and it’s special in that the application running on either a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows sees the same folder.
When running a 32-bit program on a 64-bit Windows, the WOW64 emulation layer redirects the file access from
C:\Program Files to
C:\Program Files (x86). On the other hand, 64-bit programs use the normal
Program Files folder.
Windows automatically installs programs to the correct folder, so you don’t have to worry about it. Both 32-bit and 64-bit programs should store data in AppData and ProgramData, not in any
You can choose to install your applications in any directory except
Program Files, but keep in mind that this may not be officially supported by Microsoft. Unsupported actions, like storing all user profile data on another drive, may not be thoroughly tested for compatibility with applications.
Programs installed in either
Program Files (x86)will appear in the Start menu and function normally, no matter the location. Just let your programs decide which folder to use.
Protection of the
Program Files folder is crucial. When uninstalling an application, if the uninstaller was not written correctly, every folder and file within the directory could be deleted. With the folder being protected, the installer can only remove what it’s supposed to, eliminating the risk of accidental deletion.