How To Install Windows 8 App Store Apps On Different Drive Location

My first PC in the past only had a 40GB hard drive which could be considered more than enough to be able to fill up. Today, depending on type of usage that we have, a 250GB which seems insufficient. Now, the storage media in themselves have evolved a lot, both in terms of technology and form factor. Pen drives sporting capacity with up to 250 gigabytes of storage are not uncommon, higher capacity SD cards are mainstream, and lately, even SSD drives have come down to a minimum level where almost everyone can afford them in their laptops, PCs, etc, taking advantage of the much-faster read/write speeds to the fullest.

The big issues with SSDs is that they become statistical costly, as the storage capacity increases. While having a smaller SSD, on the other hand, is having it get filled up in minutes. Under Windows 8, it’s specifically preferable to have a combination of an SSD along side a traditional SATA hard disk to take full advantage of running the OS from a faster SSD, and getting as much storage as you need for your files, music, photos, data, videos and applications, from the standard Hard Disk Drive (HDD). EDventually, the problem arises with Modern UI (Metro) apps, which follow a default installtion path under Windows’ own Program Files folder, and if already installed OS on your SSD, they may start eating up your storage space faster than you’d expected.

Metro app

Actually, booting Windows 8 OS needs almost 15GB of hard drive space and where as Windows 7 of 12GB and Windows XP only needs 800MB of storage C Drive space.

Today, we’re here to guide you on how to move Modern UI Apps in Windows 8 to another location on your HDD instead of the SSD, making exra space available in the root OS drive.

Essentially, the guide follows the premise that you have installed everyting as its default location, that your Windows 8 is installed on the SSD, and you want to move the apps to the D: drive on your SATA disk drive. The method that we’re going to achieve this requires use of symbolic links, whereas your actual Apps folder will be moved to the other drive location, and a system link (symlink) will be created in place in the C: drive to maintain referencing.

Step 1: Make sure no Modern Apps are running on your machine. You may reboot the system and then do it before running anything else. With Administrator rights (ownership), launch an elevated command prompt.

Step 2: Run the following command to take ownership of the WindowsApps folder (this is where Modern UI apps are installed by default).

takeown /F “C:\Program Files\WindowsApps” /A /R

0110-1

Step 3: The directory now requires to be copied to the new target location, which let us say to be D:\WindowsApps. Run the following in Command Prompt:

robocopyC:\Program Files\WindowsApps” “D:\WindowsApps” /E /COPYALL /DCOPY:DAT

Make sure that the copy action was successfully and there were no errors or failure messages. If seen those, just reboot the machine and start again.

Step 4: Now, you want to remove the original folder from C:\ drive using the command below:

rmdir /S “C:\Program Files\WindowsApps

Step 5: Finally, create rthe symlink:

mklink /D “C:\Program Files\WindowsApps” “D:\WindowsApps

Completed, now you can launch any Modern UI Windows 8 app to verify that it works perfectly.

In case if you don’t want to play around with any of this, or if you feel uncomfortable typing in commands, you can manually move the WindowsApps folder from Program files to a target location of your desired choice and then change a registery entry to reflect that. It’s advised that this will only work if there’s no Metro App installed on your PC.

In registry editor, go to:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Appx\PackageRoot

and change the location to the new one (e.g., D:\WindowsApps). Reboot the computer afterwards.

(Via: Redmondpie)