Humblecoder

Caution, this blog may be ironically named

Why DirLinker Doesn’t Support XP

| Comments

I posted up the Directory Linker CodePlex project a little over 2 weeks ago and it has clocked up a reasonable 103 downloads in that time.  Last night I was glancing over where the traffic came from on the stats page and a lot of referrals have come from this review site, they state that:

The app works on Windows 7 and Vista only, support for Windows XP is planned in the near future.

This is incorrect and maybe I should have been more clear that Directory Linker will not support XP unless there is some overwhelming outcry for it or someone else does it.

Why?

First for selfish reasons, I don’t use a machine that has XP installed anymore, furthermore, I would encourage anyone on XP to upgrade for security if nothing else.  At the end of the day, I created this tool for my use and I don’t use XP.

The second reason is technical, without going to far in, symbolic directory links have been in NTFS for quite a while but only got ‘first class’ support by the OS recently.  Previous to Vista they were called Junction Points and had all kinds of weird side effects (more details here). Also, the API calls used by Directory Linker to create the symobolic link is only supported by Vista and above.  It is technically possible to do the same for XP and it is not difficult but Directory Linker simply doesn’t do it.

I hope that clears things up, also if you find a download link for Director Linker that links to SoftSea in anyway please do not use it.  If you’re not a programmer it’s safe to stop reading now.

Fork You!

Well, I rather you didn’t.  I will happily accept any patch that is submitted to the project to do this.  To help you out here is a quick overview on how to do  it.

  1. Locate FolderImp.cs and make the CreateLinkToFolderAt method virtual.
  2. Create a new class that inherits from FolderImp and name it to show it is for XP.
  3. Override only the CreateLinkToFolderAt and add the code to create a link in XP (Tip: start at DeviceIoControl.aspx)).
  4. Open Program.cs and go to the FillIoCContainer method and add code to conditional select the correct IFolder class when the application starts.

Quite simple really.

Comments