ini file question on the Mac

Kee Nethery kee at
Mon Aug 11 20:09:32 EDT 2008

On Aug 11, 2008, at 3:01 PM, J. Landman Gay wrote:

> Phil Davis wrote:
>> Personally, I've done it both ways - prefs in an app subfolder, or  
>> prefs in the Preferences folder (or in my app's subfolder in the  
>> Preferences folder when I need to store multiple files there). The  
>> OS will allow a prefs file to be anywhere, and be named anything.  
>> It won't display a warning if you don't do things in a prescribed  
>> way.
>> That said, there are usually reasons why prescribed ways are, well,  
>> prescribed. Someone else will be better versed on the why's and  
>> wherefore's of that than myself. (Sounds like a Gaskin topic to me!)
> One reason is that on OS X, apps are usually installed to the main  
> Applications folder, but each user's preferences are stored in the  
> user's private preferences folder. This allows each user to have a  
> different sets of prefs for the app. Also, if a user chooses to back  
> up only their user data (which I think is pretty common,) their  
> preferences will be included if they are stored in the prefs folder.  
> If the prefs are stored with the application, then they won't get  
> backed up unless the user does a full, system-wide backup.

Plus, most people expect that if they blow away the application and re- 
install it, the previous preferences will still be around to hold  
things like their regcodes and such. Best to just store preferences in  
the preferences folder.

As for the format of what goes into that preferences file, seriously,  
it's your file, do whatever you want with it. If you have code that  
reads and writes data into a Windows .ini file, you might as well  
store the exact same data into the mac preferences file and if it  
makes you happy, you can choose to give it a .ini extension. It is  
completely up to you.

Kee Nethery

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