C++Introduction to C++Language FeatureLearn C++

How To Check If a Directory Really Exists on Windows

In C++ Builder, how can we check if there is a directory that exists in that given path? Can I check if a folder exists or not in C++? How can I check Drive, Directory or a File in C++? Let’s answer your questions.

C++ Builder has a lot of specific methods in its SysUtils library that is included in vcl and fmx libraries. Some of these are grouped as a Path Manipulation Routines that allows user to edit, extract, get and set drive name, directory name, file name, file extensions, .. etc and these methods are combined in Vcl.FileCtrl, System.IOUtilsSystem.SysUtils libraries. These all methods are easy to use and easy to get or set file path strings in that operating system. These can be used with other component properties like FileName property of OpenDialog, SaveDialog components. We can also check drive, files or directories if they are exist or not in that given path.

Let’s see how we can use DirectoryExists Method to check if it exists in that path on Windows.

What does the C++ DirectoryExists method do?

DirectoryExists Method (System::SysUtils::DirectoryExists) is a SysUtils Method that determines whether a specified directory exists. Call DirectoryExists() to determine whether the directory specified by the Directory parameter exists. If the directory exists, the function returns True. If the directory does not exist, the function returns False. If a full path name is entered, DirectoryExists searches for the directory along the designated path. Otherwise, the Directory parameter is interpreted as a relative path name from the current directory.

What is the syntax of the C++ DirectoryExists method?

Here is the Syntax of DirectoryExists Method:

Note: If the Directory parameter is a symbolic link and the FollowLink parameter is set to True, the method is performed on the target directory. If the first condition is True, but the FollowLink parameter is set to False, the method will be performed on the symbolic link. If the link is broken, the method will always return False.

Note: The Vcl.FileCtrl unit (Windows only) also contains a DirectoryExists function. However, the Vcl.FileCtrl version is deprecated, and the System.SysUtils version is preferred and can be used in multi-device applications.


Method behavior if the Directory parameter is a directory:

Target ExistsFollowLinkMethod result
YESTrueTrue
YESFalseTrue
NOTrueFalse
NOFalseFalse


Method behavior if the Directory parameter is a symbolic link:

Target ExistsFollowLinkMethod result
YESTrueTrue
YESFalseTrue
NOTrueFalse
NOFalseTrue

A simple Example of how to use the C++ DirectoryExists method

DirectoryExist Method returns a Boolean, we can check a file and set the result to a bool as below,

or we can directly set its result to a components value, for example we can use it with a CheckBox (TCheckBox) component as below

Here’s a full example of how to use the C++ DirectoryExists method

Here is the example how we check if a directory exists or not,


As same as here above, there are a FileExists() method to check directories and DriveExists() method to check files. More examples about Path Operations can be found here and Disk and Directory Support Routines can be found here

Here is the full example about using DriveExists(), DirectoryExists() and FileExists() Methods,

C++ Builder is the easiest and fastest C and C++ IDE for building simple or professional applications on the Windows, MacOS, iOS & Android operating systems. It is also easy for beginners to learn with its wide range of samples, tutorials, help files, and LSP support for code. RAD Studio’s C++ Builder version comes with the award-winning VCL framework for high-performance native Windows apps and the powerful FireMonkey (FMX) framework for cross-platform UIs. There is a free C++ Builder Community Edition for students, beginners, and startups.

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About author

33+ years of coding with more than 30+ programming languages, mostly C++ on Windows, Android, Mac-OS, iOS, Linux and some other operating systems. Dr. Yilmaz Yoru was born in 1974, Eskisehir-Turkey. He graduated from the department of Mechanical Engineering of Eskisehir Osmangazi University in 1997. One year later he started to work in the same university as an assistant. He received his MSc and PhD degrees from the same department of the same university. He has married and he is a father of a son. Some of his interests are Programming, Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics and Artificial Intelligence. He also likes the graphical 2D & 3D design and high-end innovations.
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