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Bug 50427 - LibO installer destroys Windows XP basic file structure when NTFS junctions are used
Summary: LibO installer destroys Windows XP basic file structure when NTFS junctions a...
Status: RESOLVED WORKSFORME
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Installation (show other bugs)
Version:
(earliest affected)
3.5.3 release
Hardware: x86 (IA32) Windows (All)
: medium critical
Assignee: Andras Timar
URL:
Whiteboard: NeedsWindows
Keywords:
Depends on:
Blocks:
 
Reported: 2012-05-28 06:52 UTC by Ulf Zibis
Modified: 2014-01-09 01:27 UTC (History)
4 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:


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Description Ulf Zibis 2012-05-28 06:52:14 UTC
- Redirect all users desktop folder to other location via NTFS junction, e.g. C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Desktop --> D:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Desktop (I use LSE [1] for that)
- Put some content in this folder, to see it on your desktop, regardless by which Windows account you are logged in.
- Install LibO
--> after install, only LibO's shortcut is visible on the desktop, but all other content is gone. Looking behind, I can see, that the 'Desktop' named junction to 'Desktop' folder on Volume D: was deleted, and replaced by a new empty normal folder 'Desktop'.
As this folder is of basic nature for Windows XP to run correctly, LibO installer is wrong to manipulate it.

[1]: http://schinagl.priv.at/nt/hardlinkshellext/hardlinkshellext.htm
Comment 1 Andras Timar 2012-05-29 05:33:13 UTC
I'll see what I can do about this bug, but it is not a blocker. One can argue that it was you, who destroyed Windows XP basic file structure by installing and using a 3rd party file system manipulating tool. If you wanted to redirect your common Desktop folder, why did not you change HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders\Desktop in registry?
Comment 2 Ulf Zibis 2012-05-29 11:46:09 UTC
(In reply to comment #1)
> I'll see what I can do about this bug, but it is not a blocker. One can argue
> that it was you, who destroyed Windows XP basic file structure by installing
> and using a 3rd party file system manipulating tool.

This is another point of view I respect.
But please note, that junctions can be defined without 3rd party tools by linkd.exe from Windows Resource kit, see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NTFS_junction_point.
Additionally, 'Desktop' is a Windows system folder (try to delete ..\All Users\Desktop\ from Windows Explorer and see the error message) which IMHO should never be manipulated without further notice by 3rd party software, here LibO Installer, regardless, in which manner it is anchored in the file system.

> If you wanted to redirect your common Desktop folder, why did not you change
> HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User
> Shell Folders\Desktop in registry?

FYI, I first tried that, but the use was very limited. Amongst others I was not able to properly install an anti-virus protection.

After deeper look, the reason is obvious. HKLM\...\Explorer\User Shell Folders\ settings, as it's naming says, define the locations of Windows Explorer's phantom folders. Other software may use them, but are not bound to refer them.
Even LibO installer seems not to refer it's setting for 'Desktop', as it should just take it, but shouldn't change anything at the target.

FYI, 'Desktop' is not the only location, I have redirected by NTFS junction, there are much more sensible, e.g. 'Application Data', 'Locale Settings' 'Network Neighbourhood'. Nd I have installed more than 100 programs on my machine, but never had any problems with those redirections.
Comment 3 Ulf Zibis 2012-07-19 19:45:13 UTC
Any news ...?
Comment 4 Joel Madero 2012-08-30 02:11:21 UTC
@Andras: Is this a confirmed bug since you are assigned to it? If so can we mark as NEW instead of UNCONFIRMED. Thanks
Comment 5 Ulf Zibis 2012-10-09 21:06:12 UTC
Hi, any news on this subject?
I have experienced, that, even if desktop shortcut is disabled by installer, the desktop configuration was corrupted.
There was no C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Desktop\ folder any more.
Comment 6 bfoman (inactive) 2012-11-27 20:01:46 UTC
Changed summary a bit.
Comment 7 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2013-12-24 02:13:03 UTC
Hi Ulf,

I don't have a WinXP install here I can test against -- is this still reproducible with the latest builds of LibreOffice?
https://www.libreoffice.org/download/

We also have some pre-release builds, just in case you'd like to test against something newer:
https://www.libreoffice.org/download/pre-releases/

Thanks for your input!

--R

Status -> NEEDINFO
Comment 8 Ulf Zibis 2014-01-09 01:27:49 UTC
(In reply to comment #7)
> I don't have a WinXP install here I can test against -- is this still
> reproducible with the latest builds of LibreOffice?
> https://www.libreoffice.org/download/

The problem seems as repaired by itself.
With 4.1.4.2 I couldn't reproduce the problem with WinXP.
Anyway, as it seems, nobody has touched the code, it may be reasonable to check the code, how this problem could occur before over several releases.