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VST path - where to put the plugins


When applications look for the VST folder, they probably follow the steps below, but sadly the approaches differ because there isn't a proper defined standard on how to establish the correct paths. For example, Windows developers (who often don't know enough about non-Windows systems) tend to forget the importance of using the environment variables. According to the Audacity team the search order is supposed to be:
  1. The current directory of the currently running program (but don't put your VSTs there)
  2. The path specified by the VST_PATH environment variable
    (this is for 32 bit, what is the corresponding variable for 64 bit?)
And on Windows, additionally the first of the following to be found:
  1. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\VST\VSTPluginsPath   (for 32 bit)
  2. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\VST\VSTPluginsPath   (for 32 bit)
  3. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\WOW6432Node\VST\VSTPluginsPath   (for 64 bit)
  4. C:\Program Files (x86)\Steinberg\VSTPlugins   (for 32 bit)
  5. C:\Program Files\Steinberg\VSTPlugins   (for 64 bit)
To set both 32 and 64 bit VST paths like the above, you may use this .reg file.

Or, on OS X, additionally:
  1. The users ~/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST directory
  2. The system /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST directory

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