Instructions 1/6


SkyrimCharacterHelper will aid you in dealing with your different characters' savegames. You can copy or move savegames or complete characters into a user-defined backup directory and restore them from this folder. It is also possible to delete savegames or complete characters. Savegames are shown character-wise, the display can be sorted by location, date, player level and filename.

SkyrimCharacterHelper allows launching Skyrim "stand-alone" or for a dedicated character. But even better, it also offers the automated conversion of Skyrim's quicksave- and autosave-files. This means that after launching Skyrim the tool monitors it, and whenever Skyrim creates a quicksave- or autosave-file, SkyrimCharacterHelper converts this file into a regular savegame for the corresponding character, thereby complying with the numbering schema of already existing savegames.


This feature basically enables you to get rid of Skyrim's save screen: Instead of saving games using the save screen, you can just hit F5 to cause Skyrim creating a quicksave game and continue your gameplay. Working in background, SkyrimCharacterHelper will create the regular savegame based on the newly created quicksave file for you automatically and give an audible notification. You can command SkyrimCharacterHelper to behave the same way when autosaves are created (which happens for instance when you use the map for travelling to dedicated locations). After Skyrim has terminated, SkyrimCharacterHelper will bring up its window again.

Special thanks

There are users of SkyrimNexus, who deserve special thanks for contributing to SkyrimCharacterHelper by suggesting new features and providing worthful information and hints in the discussion thread:

☆ bahnbrecher
☆ digitaltrucker
☆ DingoForest
☆ HadToRegister

1. Prerequisites

1.1 tasklist.exe

Windows XP users, please note: SkyrimCharacterHelper scans the process list when monitoring Skyrim in order to detect related processes. Therefore, it uses the output of a tool called tasklist.exe. While it ships with every version of Windows7, it was delivered with particular versions of WindowsXP only, it was especially not included in the Home edition. So, if you use Windows XP Home and want to take advantage of SkyrimCharacterHelper's features, you'll have to install tasklist.exe. It was distributed by Microsoft as part of the TweakUI utilities, but you can find a valid download here, too.

1.2 Java7

SkyrimCharacterHelper is a localized Java7-based application. You can find the latest Java release here. For regular users, I recommend installing the JRE, while developers may want to choose the JDK. Please make sure that Java is installed properly on your machine, especially that jar-file associations and path entries point to Oracle's JRE/JDK (they might have been highjacked by other applications). So, if starting SkyrimCharacterHelper by double-clicking the jar-file fails, most likely your settings point to non-standard JREs/JDKs.

When you're having issues starting SkyrimCharacterHelper, the comments section of the official thread at SkyrimNexus contains a posting describing how to repair your file associations in case your settings are so messed up that even using the Windows Control Panel won't fix them. This is the short version of the posting by HadToRegister (make sure to enter a path which fits you Java installation in step 3):

1. Open a command prompt
2. Enter assoc .jar=jarfile
3. Enter ftype jarfile=C:\Program Files\Java\jre\bin\javaw.exe -jar %1 %*

1.3 Launching Skyrim

1.3.1 File mode setting and launching

SkyrimCharaterHelper is able to launch Skyrim in several ways. I'd like to explain how launching works a bit more detailed here:

While you can setup a file mode defining how files should be treated in case of backup or restore operations, this particular setting does not apply to the launch methods: If you launch Skyrim specifically for a selected character or a selected savegame, it will always move files if necessary, independently from the current file mode setting.

So, whenever you launch Skyrim for a selected character using the launch buttons below the character lists, any savegame not belonging to this character will be moved to the backup folder. And of course, if you select a character from the backup folder and hit launch, then its savegames have to be moved to Skyrim's savegame folder in order to being accessible by Skyrim. The same logic applies to launching Skyrim for a selected savegame.

The reason is, that SkyrimCharacterHelper is just proxying the launch by calling either the standard launcher or the SKSE launcher (or a user-defined target), it can only support what these applications support. Yet, there is no way of calling either of them for just a single file or a defined set of files (except for some ini-file tweaking, which does not comply with SkyrimCharaterHelper's intention), so at present, moving files (if needed) is inevitable.

1.3.2 Skyrim launch target

While SkyrimCharacterHelper is able to launch Skyrim, it also supports extensions such as SKSE by letting the user define which file to execute when launching Skyrim. By default, the Skyrim installation path coming from your registry and the Skyrim launcher binary are used to define the launch target. Please note: If you setup your launch target, do not choose TESV.exe as your target file, but the launcher binary SkyrimLauncher.exe instead.

Why that? Because TESV.exe itself uses to execute SkyrimLauncher.exe when it is called. So this will result in multiple starts of the launcher binary, finally causing an error message. Since SkyrimCharacterHelper hardly can predict what your launch target will perform, it therefore just checks whether the target process is already running before trying to launch it. To avoid the described error scenario, you are recommended to rather use SkyrimLauncher.exe as launch target than TESV.exe.

1.4 Where are my Skyrim savegames?

Good question. SkyrimCharacterHelper tries to locate them, taking into account differences between WinXP, WinVista and Win7. Skyrim creates a folder called Skyrim\Saves within another special Windows folder (accessible by the environment variable %USERPROFILE%), which depends on the OS version:

• WinXP: My Documents\My Games
• WinVista: My Documents\Saved Games
• Win7: Documents\My Games

When SkyrimCharacterHelper detects that Skyrim's savegame folder has not been defined yet or is empty (for whatever reason), it tries to retrieve the location depending on your OS. If it succeeds, it will show a requester and suggest using this folder.

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