Where are my files stored?


New Member
Hi all, please forgive my ignorance but I am a complete newb to PICAXE

I have installed a paid up licensed version of PICAXE VSM and while I can open and close my files, when I navigate to the C:\Program Files (x86)\Revolution Education\PICAXE VSM\MODELS directory I cannot see the files I created and a Windows search shows them in a virtual store in APP Data (C:\Users\Kirk\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\Revolution Education\PICAXE VSM\MODELS) is this correct or have I got something wrong in my settings?

Anyone know why it does this?


Senior Member
You should not really be storing files under the "Program Files" or "Program Files (x86)" directories.

In latest versions of Windows, Microsoft has decided that these directories ( where applications are installed to ) should be protected from alteration to improve the security of the system. This prevents malware and viruses replacing parts of an application and better allows the integrity of the installed applications files to be checked.

If users or the application do try to place new files into the application directories they are actually placed in a "VirtualStore" directory which shadows the application's installation directory. The application itself will often present the saved files as if they are where the user placed them, but when the directories are viewed using Windows Explorer files aren't shown where they were saved but can be found in the "VirtualStore" directory.

Ideally you should be storing your files somewhere other than in the installation directories and, if you are not, Windows moves them elsewhere, then does its best to hide what it has done from you. This usually works within an application when Windows makes it appear the files are where you thought they were., but the trick is revealed, and can cause some confusion, if those files are looked for from outside the application.


New Member
Hi many thanks for that explanation, I should have mentioned in the original post that I am using Windows 8. I have now saved my files in my local documents folder.

Indeed it can cause confusion, when I changed directories in the system set path option I lost access to a lot of DLL files until I restored the paths, took a little working out but all is back working now. Thanks again for the help