Microsoft Store Apps Fail to Start if the User Profiles or the ProgramData directory are Moved from their Default Location

Applies to: Windows 10, version 1809Windows 10Windows 8


After moving the Users directory, an individual user profile or the ProgramData directory from their default locations Modern Applications will no longer start. Various symptoms may be noticed. Some of the symptoms you may see are:

  • Clicking the tile for a Microsoft Store App or the Microsoft Store will begin to launch the app but will return to the start screen. No error is displayed. 
  • Clicking the tile for the Microsoft Store will fail to open the store. the error "We weren't able to connect to the Store. This might have happened because of a server problem or the network connection timed out. Please wait a few minutes and try again. Clicking "try again"  may or may not succeed in connecting you to the Store.
  • Clicking the tile for the Microsoft Store will open the Store but attempting to purchase apps will return the error "Your purchase couldn't be completed"
  • The modern PC settings app will not open nor will any of the apps accessed from there.
  • The modern Windows Update will not open however the legacy Windows Update accessed via Control Panel will.


When the Users directory, an individual user profile or the ProgramData directory are moved to another location other than their default locations Modern Apps are no longer supported or expected to work.


Do not alter the default location of the USERS directory (c:\users by default) or any individual users profile. Do not alter the default location of the ProgramData directory (c:\ProgramData by default)

More Information

Details on the method of relocating the Users and ProgramData directories are located at the links below. These  methods are provided as is and intended for test environments only. These methods clearly state that the Microsoft Store and Microsoft Store apps are not supported if they are used.