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Move that nasty EA Games folder out of Documents!

   October 19th, 2008

My girlfriend loves The Sims 2.  Unfortunately she has to play it on my main computer because it’s also a gaming rig so it handles The Sims 2 with ease, where as her computer would stroke out.

Because of this The Sims 2 is installed on my computer.

I have my system setup with multiple hard drives, but for the sake of this article, we’ll say I have my C: which is where Windows and all it’s crap is installed, and I have a D: where I install all my games and keep the [legal] images for them and stuff.

Well The Sims 2, thanks to EA’s shitty programming, when installed to another location besides the C:, like the D:, even though it installs to d:\program files\ea games\the sims 2 it still feels the dire need to install files on you C: in your Documents folder!  Even more so, if you have every expansion pack and add on like we do that EA Games folder on your C: can balloon up to over 5gb!!!  This is incredibly frustrating because this is the EXACT reason why I install games to the D: I want to keep ridiculous amount of files OFF my much smaller C:

As far as I know, I am the first person that has come up with a way to move this folder-of-shit off of your C: and to any other location you please.

Basically, you move the folder where ever you want it to go.  I moved it to D:\Program Files\EA Games Data

Once you move the folder you need to create something called a “symbolic link” from the old location to the new location.  These instructions are for Windows Vista only.  This can be done on XP with a program called “junction” but I’m not going to provide those instructions as XP is an 8 year old OS now and is a thing of the past.

Open up a command prompt and cd in to your Documents folder.  In there you will use the following command:

mklink /j “EA Games” “D:\Program Files\EA Games Data”

This command is making a link, junction (folder), from EA Games in your current directory to the new location of the directory.

You will see this output:

Junction created for EA Games <<===>> D:\Program Files\EA Games Data

Telling you the junction from EA Games in your Documents folder has been linked to your new folder location.  Now in your documents folder you will see the EA Games folder with a shortcut arrow on it.

You can navigate this folder and read/write files to it just as if the files were on your C:, but in reality the files live on your D:!

So now the 5gb bohemoth of a folder has been moved.  It’s really cool because even though you can navigate to C:\Users\Nick\Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Collections The OS is actually accessing the files in D:\Program Files\EA Games Data\The Sims2\Collections

Very very useful!

Enjoy reclaiming your space on your C:

27 Responses to “Move that nasty EA Games folder out of Documents!”

  1. Dominic  Says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    I’m going to try this immediately.

  2. KrAzE  Says:

    I had the same problem with Grid. It thought it was a great idea to store its “flashback” feature on my C drive. This file was at minimum 1Gigglebit.

    Blame microsoft however.. they are the ones who are initiating where the savegames are supposed to go with the new works with windows crap. They still shouldnt have migrated content like they did.

    I hate having save games in my documents personally. Most of the time for older games I just modify the registry.

  3. Nick - Author Comment:

    Well I think the purpose of the savegames folder is for JUST the game save files that hold your saved game data. I’m not really super sure what the point of this is either… but I don’t think MS intended game makers like EA to store 5gb of files in your Documents folder, even when they are installed to a different disk volume.
    I blame EA… bunch of assholes who do whatever they want, despite its effect on their end users.

  4. n00b  Says:

    Thanx a L000t!
    I’ll try to fix this with junction on WindowsXP

    Very well written !

  5. Joshua  Says:

    Could you help me with the command prompt? I suck with using it after having not done so for many years. So I move the folder where I want it first? All I need is exactly what I will type into the command prompt.

    The offending EA GAMES folder is located in “C:\Documents and Settings\Admin\My Documents” and I would like to relocate it to
    “D:\Deadlands\The Sims 2 Crap”

  6. Nick - Author Comment:

    Documents and Settings? If you’re on XP you’d need need to download the junction command to do this. This functionality is not built in to XP.

  7. Joshua  Says:

    Well, thanks. Guess I won’t be figuring this out anytime soon. Running on 4 hours of sleep means I have to be walked through everything. I found this: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896768 But in my current state, I’m not sure what to do with it.

  8. Nick - Author Comment:

    That is the right tool. I haven’t had any xp machines for a few years now, so I have no way to test it. Sorry. Running a junction /? Should get you on the right path.

  9. Joshua  Says:

    I just downloaded it, but when I used the exe, the command box appears for a second then vanishes. It started this after I clicked “I agree” to the licensing. I’ll look for another. That one looked promising, so that sucks. Thanks for your help.

  10. Joshua  Says:

    Okay, I’m gonna try this one. It looks like it has a good, easy to understand interface.

    http://www.rekenwonder.com/linkmagic.htm

  11. Joshua  Says:

    QUick question: do I need an empty folder in C drive called EA GAMES for this to work or not?

  12. Nick - Author Comment:

    No, the junction utility should create it.

  13. Joshua  Says:

    Thanks. Almost done here. I moved the folder where I wanted it, but it is also still where it was and it won’t allow me to delete it, saying that something is using it. I can’t make a junction if the folder I’m linking it to is still there. What do I do?

  14. Nick - Author Comment:

    Restart your machine and try deleting it again

  15. Joshua  Says:

    100% success, thank you. Now the volume bar minimizes the game for some reason, however, but at least the big problem is fixed. Thanks again.

  16. Nick - Author Comment:

    Glad you got it going!

  17. Michael  Says:

    Thanks!

    been looking for ln -s on windoze since 1993!

    M.

  18. Arabella  Says:

    So awesome, can’t wait to try this when I get home! I have a fresh install of TS2 (all EPs) on Windows 8 on a 60gb SSD, and I’d forgotten how much space the sims takes! I haven’t even added my downloads folder yet (forcing myself to clean it out first), but I don’t know if I want to move the folder to a different drive. The game takes 20 seconds to load vs 20 minutes on my previous computer, so I’m hesitant to move my EA Games folder to a normal drive.

  19. Arabella  Says:

    Just wanted to confirm my previous comment => works like a dream!

  20. Nick - Author Comment:

    Good deal! This article is even more relevant now that SSD’s are becoming more popular. It’s even more important to keep unnecessary files off the SSD since its storage is a bit pricey for the time being.
    I still use this junction in Windows 7 with The Sims 3 and it still works great.

  21. Smiley  Says:

    Hi.
    When I try your method with my game files(On WIN7) it replies with:
    Cannot create file when file already exists.

    This is my cmd command:

    C:\Users\Smiley\Documents>mklink /j “Electronic Arts” “e:\EA Games Files From Do
    cuments(moved with link junction)”

    Any opinions about this?
    Thanks.

  22. Nick - Author Comment:

    Sounds like your “Electronic Arts” folder already exists in your Documents folder. Make sure there is no folder named as such already existing in your Documents folder. This would have been the folder you moved.

  23. Ashley  Says:

    Thank you for commenting and keeping this updated even 8 years later, you’re really awesome and I don’t think you got the recognition you deserve! Thank you!

  24. Erthana  Says:

    Hey, I have the same issue as Smiley, but removing the EA Games folder isn’t fixing it. I’m also running windows 7, any ideas?

  25. Erthana  Says:

    Oke; more info: I do get a symbolic link folder, but it goes into my User map (C:\User\Erthana ) instead of in My Documents, and moving it doesn’t help.

  26. Nick - Author Comment:

    You can’t move it. You have to delete the symlink and recreate it in the appropriate spot.

  27. bikerider84550  Says:

    Ok I’m a little confused . You said ” Once you move the folder you need to create something called a “symbolic link” from the old location to the new location. These instructions are for Windows Vista only. This can be done on XP with a program called “junction” but I’m not going to provide those instructions as XP is an 8 year old OS now and is a thing of the past.” is this still possible with Windows 7 ? I’m a lot computer illiterate so any step by step would be really helpful . Thanks

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