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Tech Tip: 4D v14 Preference file changes
Published On: May 8, 2014

For many years the cure to strange or unexplainable ills in 4D was to quit 4D, dispose of 4D or 4D Server's application "preference file" and restart 4D. Like magic, the strange or unexplainable ill disappeared.

To dispose of the preference file, it is good to know where it is stored.

4D and 4D Server application preference files

On Windows the preference files "Preferences v12.4DPreferences," "4D Preferences v13.4DPreferences" and "Preferences v14.4DPreferences" are located at "C:\Users\<userName>\AppData\Roaming\4D\" and "C:\Users\<userName>\AppData\Roaming\4D Server\."

On Mac the preference files "Preferences v12.4DPreferences" at "/Users/<userName>/Library/Preferences/4D/" while the files "4D Preferences v13.4DPreferences" and "Preferences v14.4DPreferences" are at "/Users/<userName>/Library/Application Support/4D/" and "/Users/<userName>/Library/Application Support/4D Server/."

Though the extension on these files is "4DPreferences," they are actually XML files and can be read with any text or XML parser. These preference files are used by all copies of 4D on this machine. Not all these preferences are not "user preferences" so editing these files is not advised.

Starting with v14, "Preferences v14.4DPreferences" is not the only external global preference file. Window locations and internal dimensions are now stored in JSON files in a folder named "4D Window Bounds v14." On Windows, this folder is found at "C:\Users\Administrator\AppData\Roaming\4D\." On Mac this folder is found at "/Users/<userName>/Library/Application Support/4D/."

Throwing away this entire folder is unnecessary if one 4D standard window appears out of its standard configuration and normal actions don't correct. For example...

If some of the panes in the v14 Debugger window are not visible and cannot be resized by the mouse, replacing or disposing of the file "/Users/<userName>/Library/Application Support/4D/4D Window Bounds v14/coreDialog/[projectForm]/4ddebugger.json" would be the next step to take.

Individual database preference files

Preference files for individual v13 and v14 databases are saved in individual folder with the database name in the path of <"C:\Users\<userName>\AppData\Roaming\4D\<databaseName>\"> on Windows and "/Users/<userName>/Library/Application Support/4D/<databaseName>/" on Macs.
In each of these v14 database folders there is also a "4D Window Bounds v14" folder.

In these individual database "4D Window Bounds v14" folder will be one or more subfolders keyed to tables in the database with ".json" files that will contain metric values for one or more forms associated with that table. The individual database folder also contains the database preferences file "preferences.4DPreferences."


These files are created and maintained by 4D v14 and are not meant for external manipulation.

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