The Mystery of the Disappearing "Exact Audio Copy"



I have Exact Audio Copy 1.0.3 installed on my system (Windows 7) and have been using it regularly. I last used it several days ago. When I attempted to start it today, I received a message saying that “the item EAC.exe that this shortcut refers to has been moved or changed so that this shortcut will no longer work properly”. I was puzzled since I knew that I had not uninstalled or changed “EAC” since I last used it several days ago.

I went to the folder: C:\Program Files (x86)\Exact Audio Copy\ and it looked normal with the exception that EAC.exe was missing. I did a search of my entire computer to see if EAC.exe could somehow have been moved to a different location but I could find no trace of it ANYWHERE on my system. I then looked in the recycle bin to see if it was in there but it was not in there either. The fact that it was not in there indicated to me that I had not inadvertently deleted it and that just further increased the mystery for me.

I then checked the EAC folder again to see if there were any strange execs with a different name which may have suddenly have appeared (indicating that EAC.exe might somehow have gotten renamed to a different name within that folder). Again, there was nothing in the folder that could have indicated an improperly renamed file.

Finally, I went to the control panel “Programs and Features” section to see if EAC was still listed. It was still listed as properly installed on my system. Furthermore, I have not installed any other software on my system since well before I had last used this exec so that would seem to rule out EAC being compromised by the installation of other software. The only change which had been made to my system had been the installation of a number of MS Windows 7 updates the previous two days, something which I would not have expected to cause this particular problem.

I finally went ahead and uninstalled then re-installed EAC and it is working fine once again. I don’t recall ever seeing a program .exe or “application” file simply DISAPPEAR from my system before as this one seems to have done. I have run anti-virus and malware scans on my system and nothing unusual has shown up. Furthermore, I am having no problems with any other program recently other than this one with EAC.

Still, I am completely baffled by this. If I want to put forth some effort to try and find out what happened, I suppose I could go back through a number of restore points to see if I can pinpoint when the EAC.exe was deleted. Before I do that however I thought I would see if anyone here had any thoughts on what might have happened here.


Probably spotted by your antivirus as (false positive) malware and put in quarantaine or deleted…


I don’t have EAC on my laptop that has Windows 7 so I can’t check to see if recent Windows Updates would cause the problem even if I installed EAC. It’s already had all the recent updates.
I also have Vista on my desktop up to date & EAC has it’s .exe file .
I didn’t test a CD but the GUI is working with the shortcut.
I have no reason to suspect that it wouldn’t rip a CD.
I think roadworker may have the correct diagnosis.


Your Hard Drive might have a developed a bad spot there.