USB / Portable Drives

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Introducing ClipMate 7 > Installation... > USB / Portable Drives

ClipMate can now run completely self-contained from USB Thumb Drives, including the ones running the "U3 Smart" launchpad and the PortableApps menu.  You can even run from a "bare" drive with no menu system.  When in portable mode, ClipMate does not need to be installed on the host computer, nor will it leave licensing information behind.  The license is stored on the removable drive, along with settings and the database.  Some files will be temporarily stored on the host machine (for performance reasons, or to reduce disk wear on the portable drive), but are removed at shutdown or device removal.

We recommend the use of a menu/launcher system, such as U3 (only available on devices with the "U3 Smart" logo) or PortableApps (free, open platform from, can be added to any USB drive). These consist of an "autorun" feature that launches a menu, from which you can run your portable programs, and have a structured approach to where portable programs store their data and settings.

The installation package varies by platform, so be sure to download the U3 Installer for U3 drives, and the PortableApps installer for all others (including "bare" drives).


ClipBar - Since the ClipBar runs as part of the Windows Explorer process, and as such, requires DLL registration, it is not practical or safe to run such a DLL on a removable drive.  Therefore, the ClipBar is unavailable when running on a host computer that does not have ClipMate 7.2 installed on it.  However, if the ClipBar IS installed on that computer (as part of a normal ClipMate installation), then the portable ClipMate will happily interact with it.
Clip Purging and Maintenance - To minimize disk wear on the portable drive, and ensure quick shutdown during the "safe eject" process, ClipMate does not run any automatic clip purging.  You will need to manually run this when needed, using File | Database Maintenance | Run Cleanup Now.


Portable ClipMate is licensed the same way as regular ClipMate.  You can run ClipMate simultaneously on your computer, plus one other computer where you are the primary user.  That usually means your desktop and a laptop, or another desktop.  With the Portable option, you are still licensed within that "one computer plus one more" framework, however it is not expected that you are the primary user of whatever machine you run the portable version on. So you can run it on your desktop and also place a license on your USB drive, and take that with you and run it on any computer.  But you need to ensure that you do not exceed the total number of licenses purchased.

Transferring the License

The license keys for the portable version are the same as the regular version.  You can easily copy the license with the following procedure:

1.Upgrade ClipMate on your PC to ClipMate 7.2 or later.  Run once, and quit. This makes the key visible to the portable version.
2.Run the portable version from the USB drive.
3.ClipMate should detect the key on the host computer, and offer to copy it to the portable device. Click OK, and it will copy the key for you.  Quit and re-start the portable version.
4.It should now recognize the registration key. Verify in the Help | About box.
5.You can now run ClipMate on any PC by inserting the USB drive. It will run as fully registered to you, but will not leave the key on the host, nor will it start a trial counter.

Installing and Running Portable ClipMate

U3 "Smart" Drives
Generic USB Drives