Setting data pathway to HDD with Windows10 on SSD?

Sep 8, 2015
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after suffering an HDD failure on my Lenovo Y500 Ideapad, I opted to replace the HDD with an SSD as the :C drive to run the OS and software applications and to install a new HDD in the ultrabay as the :D drive to hold all data. This was done at a shop which then did a clean install of Windows 10 onto the SSD for me.

All good so far, but the default pathway for data is still set to the SSD. I want to keep my data on the HDD and I don't want to drag and drop it from the SSD every time I need to save or import something; otherwise, I could just be using an external back-up drive. How do I set the default pathway for data (documents, music, photos, downloaded .pdfs, etc) to the HDD?

Seems like it should be straightforward but I'm a novice. Haven't found specific directions for this in Windows 10 and it looks to be somewhat different than those described for Windows 7. I want to make sure that downloaded applications and the like still go to the SSD. And I'm concerned about making changes that might mess up the registry.

Suddenly, the SSD/HDD configuration is seeming a little overly-complicated and maybe even out of date. Possibly I should have sprung for a bigger SSD and left it at that, but this is what I've got so I'd like to make it work. Any help is appreciated.

The Col.



Noob Whisperer
Nov 19, 2013
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All good so far, but the default pathway for data is still set to the SSD
Not sure what you mean by "default pathway for data".
Typically "data" goes where you tell it to go.

What I have done to conserve space on my SSD which is running only my OS and all my files as well as programs reside on a 1 TB spinner, is.....
I created an identical data structure on the second drive
D:\Users\MyUserName\ (all the associated containers.... pictures, docs, vids, music, etc., etc.,)
Then I went to C:\Users\MyUserName\ the individual container and right clicked and chose properties and used the location tab and the move button to get everything over to where I wanted it in the respective containers there.

This part may be a little excessive but it allows me to pick and choose which programs I install to which drive. Stuff I use often I let go to C:\ (like Word and Excel, etc.,) stuff I use less often like my tag editor or other utilities I send to D:\
D:\Program Files
D:\Program Files (x86)
So when I install a new program I point it there instead of the default of C:\

Absolutely critical that you do not attempt to move your entire profile as a whole, just the contents of the original containers. Do not disturb the data structure on C:\ just duplicate it on D:\ and relocate the contents.
Don't attempt to move already installed programs from C:\ to D:\ it'll just break them and you'll have to move them back.

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