Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Leave "My Documents" Alone!

Attention all software developers (particularly those in larger corporations selling end-user software for Windows):

"My Documents". Note the name. "My", as in mine - leave it alone!

If you're running any version of Windows, you probably have a My Documents folder. This was a great idea - a place for the user to keep user files, separate from the system and program files that can be easily restored or reinstalled.

Unfortunately, the rest of the software industry seems to be thinking that this is their folder as well, and that they put whatever they want in there. At the moment, I've got "Adobe", "eFax Messenger", "My Albums", "My Labels", "My Music", "My Pictures", "My Received Files", "My Scans", "My Videos", and "My Web Sites" - none of which I've created, nor do I really want!

Don't dictate my file organization for me. I, for one, don't want to store all my photos and/or videos in the same place. I may have different "photo" folders under other subfolders of "My Documents", grouped by categories, events, or otherwise.

If an application is going to store user data, either store it appropriately under "Application Data", or prompt the user where to save it.


Anonymous said...

No kidding! I am trying to contact eFax to get their dang software to install their files in C:\Program Files\eFax Messenger 4.4 instead of "*MY* Documents". If you move & delete the 4.4 folder under "My Docs" it just re-installs itself the next time you run their software.

Anonymous said...

I agree.