User Properties: Virtual Paths
If virtual paths are specified, users can gain access to files and folders outside of their own home directory. A virtual path only defines a method of mapping an existing directory to another location on the system to make it visible within a user's accessible directory structure. In order to access the mapped location, the user must still have a directory access rule specified for the physical path of a virtual path.
Like directory access rules, virtual paths can be configured at the server, domain, group, and user levels.
The physical path is the actual location on the system, or network, that is to be placed in a virtual location accessible by a user. If the physical path is located on the same computer, use a full path, such as D:\inetpub\ftp\public. You can also use a UNC path, such as \\Server\share\public. To make a virtual path visible to users, users must have a directory access rule specified for the physical path.
The virtual path is the location the physical path should appear in for the user. The %HOME% macro is commonly used in the virtual path to place the specified physical path in the home directory of the user. When specifying the virtual path, the last specified directory is used as the name displayed in directory listings to the user. For example, a virtual path of %HOME%/public places the specified physical path in a folder named "public" within the user's home directory. You can also use a full path without any macros.
Include virtual paths in Maximum Directory Size calculations
When this option is selected, the virtual path is included in Maximum Directory Size calculations. The Maximum Directory Size limits the size of directories affecting how much data can be uploaded.
A group of web developers have been granted access to the directory D:\ftproot\example.com\ for web development purposes. The developers also need access to an image repository located at D:\corpimages\. To avoid granting the group access to the root D drive, a virtual path must be configured so that the image repository appears to be contained within their home directory. Within the group of web developers, add a virtual path to bring the directory to the users by specifying D:\corpimages\ as the physical path and D:\ftproot\example.com\corpimages as the virtual path. Be sure to add a group level directory access rule for D:\corpimages\ as well. The developers now have access to the image repository without compromising security or relocating shared resources.
Relative virtual paths
Continuing with the previous example, if the home directory of the group of web developers is relocated to another drive, both the home directory and the virtual path must be updated to reflect this change. You can avoid this by using the %HOME% macro to create a relative virtual path location that eliminates the need to update the path if the home directory changes. Instead of using D:\ftproot\example.com\corpimages as the virtual path, use %HOME%\corpimages. This way the corpimages virtual path is placed within the home directory of the group, regardless of what the home directory is. If the home directory changes at a later date, the virtual path still appears there.