You’re tired of all of your programs installed in the usual folder on your Windows drive and you want to change the location of where these programs are being installed.

This means that you’ll be able to access all of your programs in a different folder that you set. By default, all programs are installed in a folder on the Windows C drive.

Depending on whether your PC is running on a 32-bit version or a 64-bit version, the 32-bit programs can be found in the Program Files folder in Windows (C:) and the 64-bit programs are found in the Program Files(x86) folder.

The installation default location can simply be changed in the ProgramFilesDir key. Here, you can choose whichever path you want your programs to be installed in.

How to Change Default Installation Directory

Before you go ahead and change the default program files directory, you need to note that Windows doesn’t support this action. When changing the location of the programs files folder by modifying the ProgramFilesDir registry value, you need to take caution.

If you change the location of the Program Files folder, you may experience problems with some Microsoft programs or with some software updates.

To change the default installation folder:

  1. Click on the Windows + R key to open Run


  1. Search for regedit


  1. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion
  2. Look for the ProgramFilesDir name on the right
  3. Right click on this to edit the string

ProgramFilesDir (x86)

  1. In the value date, input the drive and the folder name you want
  2. Click on ok

For example, this could be D:\Program Files.

To check what the name of the drive you want your folder to be in, look in the brackets next to the name of the drive.

This will tell you what to put before adding the name of the folder after the \.

The default installation folder for your programs should have now changed.

Each time you install a new program, it’s going to be installed in the location you changed it to.