Pitney Bowes
MapInfo Pro™ Monthly Journal
Easy Tip: Save time and mouse clicks by setting default Directory Preferences

64 bit MapInfo Professional provides users with a way to set the default location for various types of files. This includes the four locations that are part of the Open dialog box as well as others. Taking a few minutes to manage these settings can pay big dividends in reduced mouse clicks.


To set default directory locations go to the Options menu and choose Preferences...

The Preferences dialog box appears.

The next step is to click the Directories button.


The top of the dialog box presents a list of directory settings that can be controlled. In the screen shot below, the locations from the Open dialog box are linked to their corresponding directory preference.


To change a preference...

Highlight the directory location you wish to change and press the Modify... button.

Press the 'Modify...' button and choose a new folder to be used as the default preference.

Other directory preferences

In addition to the four locations found in the Open dialog box, several other directory preferences can be set. Below, additional directory preferences are listed.

Directory Preference Corresponding menu command
MapBasic Programs Tools > Run MapBasic Program
SQL Queries SQL Queries (file extension.SQL) created in Expert Mode in the "Open DBMS Table Options" dialog box (see the screen shot below)
Theme Templates Thematic mapping Step 3 dialog - Save or Merge templates
Saved Queries Query templates from the Query > Select and SQL Select dialog boxes
New Grids Grid thematic map, Step 2 dialog box (Grid File Name)
Shape file tables Default location to place the TAB file when opening a Shape file
WMS tables Default location to place the TAB file when using a WMS.
WFS tables Default location to place the TAB file when using a WFS.

The directory preference SQL Queries refers to the saved SQL statements created in this dialog box.

Continue the discussion?

As you can see from the Preferences dialog box there are a great many user controlled preference options in MapInfo Professional. If you are interested in learning more about this topic why not leave a comment in our LinkedIn Group? Let us know which Preferences you would like us to cover.

Article by Tom Probert, Editor of "The MapInfo Professional" journal

When not writing articles for "The MapInfo Professional", Tom enjoys talking to MapInfo Professional users at conferences and events. When not working he likes to see movies with car chases, explosions and kung-fu fighting.