I have multiple QGIS projects that need to go to different computers. I put all the files on a USB and loaded it under "Documents" on the other computers like it is saved on my own computer.

However, when opening the projects on another computer the "Handle bad layers" window pops up. There are hundreds of files for each project.

I am wondering if there is a way to get around this without having to click on each file individually and finding the new location?

enter image description here

  • Did you copy the data files on the usb drive as well or are they on network drives? Did you configure relative or absolute paths in the project settings?
    – underdark
    Aug 8, 2014 at 17:57
  • @underdark I tried the usb and uploading them to the network drive. I have relative paths configured
    – Jess
    Aug 8, 2014 at 18:02
  • 1
    and relative paths together with the data on the usb sticks doesn't work? when you prepare the project, did you have the same folder structure?
    – underdark
    Aug 8, 2014 at 18:15
  • save to the usb \\documents\project.qgs and your data as well to \\documents\data will work as @underdark mentions
    – Mapperz
    Aug 8, 2014 at 18:34
  • 1
    open the qgs file with a text editor and look up for the location of the file, can you paste that to see it? I had similar issue in Windows, look up for "datasource", I had issues where qgis saved "../../../../../data" instead of just "../data" Aug 9, 2014 at 22:37

1 Answer 1


I think all the answer has been given with several clues. Either your target project and data paths do not match the source locations or you haven't changed the path setting and saved the project file before moving the whole project.

  1. The target location where you move your project and data must match the same directory structure as the source project and data location.
  2. For each project that you will move go to Menu bar > Project > Project Properties... On the dialog that pops up you must set the "Save paths" relative drop down.
  3. Click OK to save the general settings change.
  4. Save your project so that the project file changes.

Note if the general properties tab says that the setting is already relative, then try changing the drop down to absolute and save your project again. Go back and then change it to back to relative and save once more before moving the project file and data.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.