Why Can't You Install Chrome (browser) On Any Drive But "C"

I use Chrome on my laptop and like it and needed to use one of it’s features on my desktop so I downloaded it there. I noticed it doesn’t give me an option to install it on a particular drive like most programs do.

After some googling around I noticed you apparently can’t install it on anything but your “C drive.”

Is this so? If so, why? Is there a reason for this? It doesn’t matter much but I was just curious.

I never noticed that. But, then again, I uninstalled it as soon as it became apparent I couldn’t disable the tabbed browsing “feature”.

This annoys me with Google, too. Both Google Earth and the Chrome browser. No good reason, they just don’t provide it in their installer, unlike practically every other non-trivial Windows application on the planet. Lack of configurability annoys me in general with them - you also cannot control where those applications keep their data directories. I don’t WANT Chrome’s profile in the Windows ghetto. I don’t WANT Google Earth’s cache in the Windows ghetto. I want them somewhere other than my carefully sized C: drive, which is the SYSTEM drive. Applications and their data don’t belong on it. I have D: and E: drives with directories where I intend such things to go.

BTW, if you dig into the registry, it looks like Google earth defines some keys for things like the cache file location. I’ve been tempted to tweak those and see if I can get Google Earth to keep its data somewhere off the C drive.

At least they cleaned up their defaults. The early versions of chrome installed the actual program, as opposed to the data directories, in a location under AppData, not under C:/Program Files(x86).

I like some of what Google does, but what generally keeps me from really embracing their applications is usually lack of ability to tweak things to my liking.

Chrome installs (by default, for a single user) into your %UserProfile% (usually below C:\Documents and Settings\ or C:\Users). Shared installs use %ProgramFiles%. Both these things can be changed, but it is not always trivial to do so.

An easier solution is to get a portable version. This can be located anywhere you like, and will just work.


My understanding (and I may be off) is that the portable version isn’t the official Google release of Chrome, but a similar one. This is because Chrome is open sourced so someone just took the code and made an open sourced version. Is this so?

Since I only want Chrome for one site, it’s no big deal.

As for the tabbed browsing, the only way to get around it is open a page, click and hold it and drag it a bit, then you will have two open Chrome browsers. You can also drag two open Chrome browsers and combine them again

thanks for the help

It is Chromium, built from the released source code - it misses some proprietary Google features (such as the bundled Flash player/PDF reader) but excludes some usage reporting.


What the … mine still does that…

I’ve got version 12.0.742.100 m, and the executable installed into C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application. My first guess might be that you upgraded from an old version installed in AppData, rather than performing a fresh install.


Or, as noted above, maybe you installed it for a single user rather than shared.

Why wouldn’t you want tabbed browsing it ususes less resources and it easy to use and read the titles? I am not gonna give a speech to convert you just wanna hear the ideology of the other side.

OK, short version, horrible and incompetent programming.
LONG version is, Windows BOOT and operation is based upon ARC paths.
When operating for legacy purposes, it defaults to C:. A and B being defaulted as floppies.
So, a LOUSY programmer would hard code to C:, rather than use UNC codes and windows variables. Great for portability, but horrific for WINDOWS.
C: is, for Windows, %HOMEPATH%, wherein the ULTIMATE root is in ARC format at boot.
It’s arcane, insane and even nauseating, at times, but THAT is how it works.
NORMALLY, %HOMEPATH% is c:, but can be configured on install (or otherwise with 17 trainloads of work), otherwise. For the otherwise system, %HOMEPATH% is c:.
For vanilla installs, the system is at %HOMEPATH% for its root.
It appears that Google fscked it horribly up and went for the lowest common denominator, hence c:, rather than the far more common for REAL programmers, %HOMEPATH%.
There are a handful of far more common environment variable names that are part and parcel of windows, but they’re WAY beyond the scope of THIS response.

Just curious, no criticism, but why would you want to disable the single handiest innovation in browser interface technology in the last decade? Even if you don’t use tabs, nobody is holding a gun to your head to make you open new ones!