HowTo: portable (and/or parallel 0.6.2 and V1) install of VCV on Windows

from the manual:

Command line usage

To launch Rack from the command line, cd into Rack’s directory, and run ./Rack .

  • -d : Enables development mode
  • -g <path> : Sets Rack’s global directory
  • -l <path> : Sets Rack’s local directory

but can someone explain to an illiterate/noob how it is done?

how do I start the command line? what do I need to type there?
etc. pp.

I think now that V1 is gettting closer it will be more imprtant to have
a way to seperate a V0.6.2 install and a V1 install and start them with different folders for plugins
but not every user will undersand how it can be done.

would be cool if someone can make a little howto
(I myself don’t understand how it is done, I just hit the icon on my desktop :wink: )


Probably the easiest way on Windows is to create a shortcut to Rack, right-click > Properties, and add the flags in the Target field.

That be the easiest indeed.
Otherwise if you wanna go dos style, open the “run” field under the start menu.
And type: cmd
google dos commands

ok that is a good start to explain it,
but what is the exact syntax that needs to be typed in the Target box?

like how do you translate

to the target box?
(when eg. the global folder is located at D.\VCV\global)

it should really be explained for total noobs ,
best with an example imho

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You are asking dos command basics here.
Really look at the link to the google search, and watch a video that explains how to use the command line.
With basic command for example: cd (current directory) , list, dir, help.
From there you will learn the basics on how to move around through the folders and files etc :wink:
After that comes the rest.

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Hi Latif,

I know some most dos commands from my old dos days,
and the question is not about me and dos basics, but about VCV basics :wink:
this doesn’t need the command line, but how to fill the target field.

I would like to have a simple as possible handout for new users and noobs,
that now start with v0.6.2 and then i a few weeks will change to V1 and maybe
get confused by an ovewritten global folder or some trouble like this, when they install V1.
Doing this is imho customer service and will pay off in the long run.

and yes that needs explanations of even the most basic uses imho.

I thought some of the more skilled users could do an easy to understand introduction to this.
or maybe a youtube video on how to do it for a parallel install of v06.2 and v1,
because this is what many users might want to do and to know how to imho


Then the most simple approach would be as suggested by Andrew to create a shortcut, with the proper switch added to the target field.

Rack.exe -g . -l .
Rack.exe -u .
Most simple way. Stores plugins and settings in the same folder as Rack.exe. Actually, Rack is portable this way.


That documentation is for Rack v0.6. The argument names have been changed in v1. Use -u "C:\..." to set the user directory. Use . for the current directory as @stoermelder said.

wow, this is really nice to know :smile: Thank you !

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thanks, that is exactly what we need to know

Is there an equivalent for Mac users ? try -u from terminal, but no way

You can do -u from the terminal but you need to do it to the right place. Mac applications are just directories with a .app extension so you can grab the exe.

For instance in terminal

/Applications/ -u blah

will work if that is a rack 1.0.

I think you can do open /Applications/ --args -u blah

Yeah you can and that’s probably better for this user; the difference is do you keep the process attached in the terminal. (If you do the direct execution of the bundle content you can see stdout, attach a debugger, and stuff like that too which was why it was in my fingers!).

Thanks guys,
Now if i use Andrew line " /Applications/ --args -u blah"( need an s to application)
i have this answer:
-bash: /Applications/ is a directory

If i use Paul line
/Applications/ -u blah
Rack try to open but crash and the terminal say:

RtAudio: no compiled support for specified API argument!

Assertion failed: (m->box.size.x >= RACK_GRID_WIDTH), function addModule, file src/app/RackWidget.cpp, line 364.
Abort trap: 6

For info i use Mac book Yosemite/

Fixed. You forgot the open.

you’re right, sorry
now with the correct line:
open /Applications/ --args -u blah
Rack don’t open directly, i have first the little window: rack quit…ignore/signal/restart (restart works…) and this line in the terminal:
LSOpenURLsWithRole() failed with error -10810 for the file /Applications/

and sorry if i’m dumb, but in all cases how to choose a different folder for autosave, plugins …do i need to add a path in this line command ?

when I launch rack 0.6.2c this way, I miss the login and update fields in the GUI,

any idea how I can fix this?