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If I try to create files in the command prompt using the commands

mkdir C:\Users\Tristan\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\recovery
mkdir C:\Users\Tristan\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\mods

my computer will create the files without problems.

However, if I use the commands

mkdir C:\Users\%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\recovery
mkdir C:\Users\%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\mods

the command prompt responds with

The filename, directory name, or volume label syntax is incorrect.

How do I fix this?

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2 Answers 2

The %UserProfile% variable is a special system-wide environment variable that is complete in and of itself. It contains %SystemDrive%\Users\{username}

See this fantastic table that highlights the differences between variables in windows XP (NT5) and Windows Vista/7/8 (NT6)

Try

mkdir %userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\mods

Its value is the location of the current user's profile directory, in which is found that user's HKCU registry hive (NTUSER).

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thank you works perfectly now –  user210720 Mar 27 '13 at 4:10
    
please accept! You're welcome. –  G Koe Mar 27 '13 at 4:14

I assume you mixed up the variables %USERPROFILE% and %USERNAME%.

By default, %USERPROFILE% and C:\Users\%USERNAME% point to the same location. Since this is not guaranteed to be true, using %USERPROFILE% is a more reliable approach.

In general, when debugging a command like

mkdir C:\Users\%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\recovery

your first step should be to prepend echo.

The command

echo mkdir C:\Users\%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\recovery

would have shown you the following:

mkdir C:\Users\C:\Users\Tristan\AppData\Roaming\modinstaller\recovery

which is clearly not what you want.

You can also query the value of %USERPROFILE% by executing

set USERPROFILE

To see all currently defined environment variables, execute

set
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