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Note: Yes, I've seen this. However, it seems like Eclipse has changed something since 2010, because trying to run a fresh install from my flash drive doesn't work anymore. Since the question was asked and answered in 2010, I doubt anyone is gonna bother to update it, so I'm asking a new one.

I want to install Eclipse portably, on my flash drive. I tried doing what I've always done -- tell the installer to install to my flash drive -- but now, it's giving me an error about not being able to find its shared companion libraries. Specifically, it's giving me this error:

A popup with the title "Eclipse" and body text "The Eclipse executable launcher was unable to locate its companion shared library." There is a button to the bottom left that says "OK", and a red X button in the top right. There's nothing but that.

Running it from the command line yields the same result, and nothing extra printed to the command line.

Note that this is a totally fresh install, produced by going to the download page, clicking "download", running the executable, and selecting the first option, "Eclipse IDE for Java Developers", then changing the path so it's on my flash drive.

If I launch it on the computer where I installed it, it works fine. However, that sort of defeats the purpose of installing something on a flash drive, for the most part.

Since that didn't work (obviously) what am I missing? How can I make Eclipse portable?

My current computer is Windows 8 64bit, but I'd like it to work on Windows 7+, 32 and 64 bit. Technically, all I actually need is Windows 7 32bit and Windows 8 64bit as of this moment, but for the sake of being able to forget about it, I'd like it to be usable more broadly.

The flash drive has enough space for several installations, though I'd rather have just one, and I have enough programming experience that I could manage a mod, though I'd much rather have a solution that will stay if I update the software.


I used the zip file. Now, it seems to work at first, but then opens different workspaces on different computers, and despite my best efforts I can't get Eclipse to use relative paths for its JRE and JDK, meaning that it only works properly when the drive is assigned the right letter. In short, still not portable.

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    instead of downloading the installer, have you tried downloading one of the zip files? eclipse.org/downloads/download.php?file=/technology/epp/… be sure to manually unzip it, or you will get the same error. Nov 30, 2015 at 4:49
  • @FrankThomas I tried that and now it's now behaving very oddly, doing things like opening different workspaces on different computers. The program runs -- it just doesn't run like it's supposed to.
    – Nic
    Nov 30, 2015 at 23:12
  • well, workspace configuration is per-user (eg stored in the users profile, usually in ~/.eclipse ), so that configuration cannot be made portable. you will have to specify the workspace on each box under each user at least initially. if you want to have a universal workspace path, you could specify the workspace in a shortcut when you launch eclipse. Nov 30, 2015 at 23:23
  • @FrankThomas It could before; I'm not sure how it could be done now. I think there's a setting somewhere, but I can't for the life of me find it.
    – Nic
    Nov 30, 2015 at 23:37
  • That the Portable Eclipse project exists at all does indicate that there has been a change over the years in the way configuration is stored. sourceforge.net/projects/eclipseportable But I can't say I would trust it, since it is not maintained by the eclipse project or one of its big players. Nov 30, 2015 at 23:44

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I've made a portable Version of Eclipse Neon and the newest Oxygen build by using the "portableapps.com" format. You can download it here: https://sourceforge.net/projects/eclipse-neon-portable/

You should also look at this explanation: http://portableapps.com/development

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