Why does Visual Studio insist on installing partial components on a system drive despite despite another drive being specified for installation?

Issue

This is primarily a question focused on recent tooling I’ve been trying to get an installer to place components on a separate drive, but it’s notably been an issue a few times in the past, and as I’ve not been the only person to
encounter this particular type of issue, I’m trying to keep this a bit open on the general case for this situation.

So, with that caveat in consideration, I noticed this recently while trying to repair a Visual Studio installation, and found that it was trying to install components to the "System drive", despite having an installation directory that explicitly isn’t on the system drive, which is a little annoying given that I don’t have a lot of space on that drive left before I run out of space.

While I am interested in a solution for Visual Studio in this case, I was wondering what the root cause of having configurable software requiring installation to bleed over into unrelated systems drives regardless of the preference of installation location – is this a result of system commands being expected to be on the same drive as the shared tool itself, and is there a way to develop software to reduce the footprint of this where possible relatively generally?

Solution

For Visual Studio(2017, 2019) the installation locations can be changed in Visual Studio Installer > VS > Modify > Installation locations, the first time you install Visual Studio, but after you finish installing VS, the locations cannot be changed. And generally, there are three locations can be changed, they are

1). Visual Studio IDE

2). Download cache

3). Shared components, tools, and SDKs

Though these locations can be changed, some files will still be installed in C Drive.

What I think:

This is by design, or can be considered as some necessary files need to be installed in C drive to let them be “closer” to the system(or system files). Perhaps for security reasons, for sharing libraries(dlls), for registering into Windows…

I think this is not a specific condition for VS, other applications may also have some files installed to C drive.

While I am interested in a solution for Visual Studio in this case.

I’m afraid there is no solution in this case, I mean, at least, from some VS settings/options, change those files’ locations or move them from C Drive to another drive is not possible, or will cause error.

I was wondering what the root cause of having configurable software requiring to bleed over into unrelated systems drives regardless of the preference of installation location.

Perhaps, the “unrelated” is not unrelated. The better way to confirm this, I think you can ask Visual Studio Product Team, they are active on Microsoft Developer Community.

Answered By – Tianyu

This Answer collected from stackoverflow, is licensed under cc by-sa 2.5 , cc by-sa 3.0 and cc by-sa 4.0

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