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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Autodesk Services & Support - Maximum folder path limits when installing 2013 suite products

Maximum folder path limits when installing suite products


After creating and installing a deployment image you realize that not all products get installed. 
Notably Navisworks Simulate 2013, the Product Design Suite 2013 launchpad icon, the Factory Design Suite 2013 launchpad icon  and the 3DS Max Essential videos are missing.
The problem is caused by the 255 character limitation that Microsoft has for the installation path
You could run quite easily into this 255 limit while installing the Essential Skills Movies of 3DS max (ESM) that have a very long path length.
If the total installation path exceeds 255 and when installing a suite, not only ESM will fail to install but all other products like Composite 2013 , Backburner 2013 , Navisworks 2013 etc. that are to be installed after 3DSMax, will fail to install.
Also when installing 3DS Max as a point product outside of the context of a suite, you could run into the limit causing the ESM component failing to install.


The available folder length (that can be freely chosen) depends on whether you do a standalone installation or whether you create a deployment image.

Network Deployment creation

For a deployment creation, the deployment creation folder can only have a maximum of 52 characters (the deployment creation folder is the folder of where the deployment image resides).
Here is how that maximum gets calculated for the Essential skills movies of 3DSMax (ESM) by subtracting all strings that are reserved by the Autodesk installer
[Admin Path Length] =  \AdminImage\x64 (or \AdminImage\x86) = 15 characters
[Movies Path Length] = \Components\ESM\Program Files 64\Autodesk\Essential_Skills_Movies\3dsMax_Design_2013\de-DE\html\essential_skills_movies\design\resources\images\esm_design_3_import_manage_objects_36x36.png = 188 characters
The max. available deployment folder path length =  255 -  [Admin Path Length] -  [Movies Path Length] = 255 – 15 -  188 =  52 characters
If the requirement of max. 52 characters is too stringent for you, there are a couple of workaround options:

  • you can always opt out of the installation of the 3DS Max product or the 3DS Max essential videos
  • you can remove the ESM string from the EXE_SEQUENCE line in the ini file that the deployment creates
  • you can move the  ESM string to the end of the EXE_SEQUENCE line so that if ESM fails, it will not affect the installation of any subsequent products.
  • Here is  an example that moves ESM to the end of the installation sequence:
    Original setup.ini line:
    Change to

    Immediate installation

    For an immediate installation, when you extract the MSI file to a temporary folder location, the name of that folder can be 108 characters maximum.
    As the allowed maximum in the immediate case is larger, the problem is less acute than in the network deployment scenario.
    In the case of the essential skill videos, the Autodesk installer needs to have room to add following 147 characters to the folder path:
    This means that the max. available deployment folder path length = 255- 147 = 108 characters


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