KB00002 - Using Stickies as a portable application

Stickies can be used as a portable application - meaning that the program and data files can be stored on a removable device (a HDD, pen drive, USB key or similar) and run on any machine it's connected to.

"Out of the box", Stickies stores all its information in your Windows user profile. The exact place can be seen by opening the About box - right click the task-tray icon and choose About:

However, when Stickies starts, it first checks the directory in which the executable lives for the file stickies.db. This will be where you installed Stickies - more than likely c:\program files (x86)\stickies. If it finds the stickies.db file there, rather than use your profile, it will read all data from, and store all data to this place.

There are some more details on exactly the process Stickies goes through at startup with regard to directories in the "Directory Usage" page in the help file. Click any note and press F1 to call that up.

Making Stickies a portable application

The folder will now look like this (the dates and sizes may vary):

Now when you run the stickies.exe file in this location from whichever machine you plug your pen drive into, the same data will follow you around.

From v10.1a of Stickies, setting a skin which is in either the program or data directory will store a relative path to the ssk file, meaning that skins work better when Stickies is used as a portable app.

Warning: it's a very good idea to close Stickies before you remove your pen drive.

Also be aware that if you position a note to the bottom or right of your screen, then start Stickies on a screen with a lower resolution, the note may not be visible. If this happens, use the Rescue Offscreen menu option to bring it back.


Stickies has been adapted by Jacob Mastel to the PortableApps.com specification. You can find the latest release of this on the Stickies Portable page on the PortableApps.com web site. The download comprises the unmodified Stickies executable with a secondary program that makes using it in a portable manner easier. Things like automatically taking care of changing drive letters in stickies.db, file backup (integrated into the platform) and similar actions. In addition the new wrapper will automatically detect if the settings file has been compromised and will replace it if needed (so the user won't accidentally use AppData).