Visual Subst [filesystem grafting utility; shareware from v2]

Submit updates of portable freeware that are already listed in the database.
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webfork
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Visual Subst [filesystem grafting utility; shareware from v2]

#1 Post by webfork » Fri Apr 05, 2019 6:27 am

So we have this program listed as shareware https://www.portablefreeware.com/index.php?id=1005

Softpedia is listing this program as Freeware: https://www.softpedia.com/get/System/Fi ... ubst.shtml

It's not clear from the website: https://www.ntwind.com/software/visual-subst.html

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Midas
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Re: Visual Subst v2.0

#2 Post by Midas » Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:55 am

Having used this developer utilities in the past -- they had a nifty one to hide console windows for CLI only programs -- only to be surprised later by full commercialization, I was prompted by your alert to have a look.

There's no portable package to download, but the supplied setup executable can be (Uni)extracted, yielding both the 32-bit and 64-bit executables.

Having done a quick regular install/uninstall cycle, the outlook isn't very promising.

The program prompts to be set for auto-start, which can be denied, and then shows a message warning about the limits of the free version (see second picture below). Not content with that, and even if a 'ReadMe.txt' is included, should you choose to view the ReadMe at the end of the installation process, it will still launch the default browser to open 'https ://www .ntwind .com/software/visual-subst.html'...

Further, even after disabling the auto-start feature upon install, when I started the program I was alerted by WinPatrol that it still wanted to auto-run -- probably because of the corresponding default check-mark at the bottom of the program dialog (see below).

In summary, Visual Subst now falls clearly in the crippleware category, IMHO. Little convenience is left in the free version and plenty of annoying (anti-)features in exchange for such basic functionality.

Luckily the provided uninstaller -- which you'll have to find in the system's "Control Panel | Programs | Uninstall a Program" since there's no link to it from VIsual Subst entries in the Start Menu -- leaves no traces behind.

Its latest changelog reads thus:

Code: Select all

Version 2.0 (March 22, 2019)

New fully redesigned user interface
Bypassing UAC to create virtual drives for elevated apps
Ability to define and edit drive labels
Updated setup program supports high DPI
Image

Image

Image

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Re: Visual Subst v2.0

#3 Post by webfork » Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:49 am

Midas wrote:
Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:55 am
Having used this developer utilities in the past .. I was prompted by your alert to have a look.
Yeah ditto.
Midas wrote:
Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:55 am
Visual Subst now falls clearly in the crippleware category, IMHO. Little convenience is left in the free version and plenty of annoying (anti-)features in exchange for such basic functionality.
Sorry to hear that - thanks for checking.

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Re: Visual Subst

#4 Post by Midas » Sat Apr 06, 2019 1:55 pm

I made this the official forum topic for Visual Subst and amended your post subject to better reflect it. Feel free to edit/revert.

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Re: Visual Subst

#5 Post by webfork » Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:02 pm

Midas wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 1:55 pm
I made this the official forum topic for Visual Subst and amended your post subject to better reflect it. Feel free to edit/revert.
Good addition, thanks

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