Recently I worked with Visual Studio 2012 and was to add a reference to a SharePoint 2010 assembly. Previously I added a link called 14 to the Favorites that points to the 14 hive of SharePoint 2010 (see its properties below). My goal with this link was to help the easy navigation when browsing files to open them from various applications.
I wanted to browse for the assembly in a subfolder of the 14 hive to reference it in my SharePoint project. When clicking on the Browse button in Visual Studio the following dialog was displayed:
I selected the link 14 on the left side under the Favorites, and was navigated to the folder displayed below. Hmmm… I expected something else, where are my folders, like ISAPI or Logs?
Highlighting the location gave me the answer. It was the same location as I wish, but instead of the Program Files folder it was under Program Files (x86).
I double-checked the link once again, but it referred to the right location.
First I thought that it is a bug in Visual Studio, but after a short test I discovered that the problem affects all of the 32-bit applications, including Office (I have the 32-bit version of that), so I assume it should be a bug in Windows itself. I tested it with Windows 2008 R2 and Windows 7, and was able to reproduce the same issue.
If we create a folder (let’s call it Test – assuming a folder having the same name does not exist in the Program Files (x86) folder) in the Program Files folder, and add it to the Favorites, then try to open it using a 32-bit application we get a warning that states that “Location is not available”: