Portable Use

Using Portable Executable

WinSCP can be downloaded in the form of standalone Portable executables. The executables in the Portable executables package are identical to the executables in an Installation package. The difference is that the installer pre-configures the executables to override their default portable behavior.


Portable executables are intended for advanced users and specific needs. For general use, use installer.

On startup the Portable executable looks for an INI file in the directory from which it was started. The INI file must have an .ini extension and the same name as the executable. If the executable does not find any, it creates one with a default configuration. This allows you to easily carry WinSCP with your configuration on a removable media or an USB drive. For details, see auto-selecting configuration storage.

You may also use an INI file in a different folder or with a different name using an /ini switch.

Full Portability

With default configuration WinSCP still stores some temporary data on the file system of the host computer. You can configure WinSCP to be completely portable though. I.e. make it store all its files and configuration in one place - a portable drive (such as USB drive).

WinSCP stores by default these files to the host computer:

You can force WinSCP to store the files into different locations in preferences. You can use local paths relative to the WinSCP start folder.

To change the storage directly in an INI file to the same location, where WinSCP is started from, set following parameters:

  portable.txt · Last modified: by prikryl

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