NMM Manual

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The purpose of this document is to provide one source that is clear, concise and complete regarding the installation, maintenance and operation of the Nexus Mod Manager (NMM).

Scope of Project

The scope of this project to be a source of information and instruction to the NMM user that will help that user develop the skills necessary for an issue free experience running the NMM in support of their larger modding experience for every game that NMM supports.

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Overall Description


The Nexus Mod Manager (NMM) is a computer program that performs multiple, related tasks to support the acquiring, archiving, activating and managing of Computer Game Modification files (mods).

The NMM helps a user activate and manage their mods by providing an interface that performs all the tasks related to Mod management in a concise, intuitive interface. This is the face of NMM that most users see, day in and day out.

The NMM helps the user acquire mods by acting as a download manager for the Nexus Forums and File Pages(the Nexus).

The NMM helps a user archive mods by initializing and managing the user’s storage sub-system on their computer with very little input by the user.

The NMM also provides an interface to certain external tools that are related to mod management such as load order optimization tools, merge patch management tools, script enhancement tools and others.


The aims of Nexus Mod Manager are as follows:

Ease of Use

We need the NMM to give our users a very intuitive and easy to use piece of software. The user must be able to install, run and use the NMM with little to no support from the staff of Nexus Mods. This can be achieved by inviting users to a focus group and asking for their advice on the flow of the software - how do they use the software? What are they using the most? What are their frustrations? etc.


NMM draws its value from the games it supports. The largest games on the site are Bethesda games so these will be supported on / prior to release. Other games that are either determined to become large or very easy to integrate will need to first be approved by Robin due to the developer time which would be needed.


NMM needs to be able to work on a number of different platforms, from XP through to the latest Windows iteration, it needs to do this while remaining robust. In case of an error NMM needs to provide the user with enough information that a reason and fix can be found quickly once submitted to our developers.


NMM will give the user a huge amount of control over the setup of their game and mods. They will be able to control which mods are active, what order they load in, the options that are selected within the scripted installers and create profiles that can quickly and easily be modified / switched and uploaded to the NexusMods.com site.


While the Nexus will show ads to non-premium / supporter members, the NMM will remain free of ad’s. This will enable a clean and clear interface and ensure that nothing interrupts the user while they are creating their mod profile.

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Installing Nexus Mod Manager

Before beginning installation

  • Every system is different. While the NMM team try to account for everything, something may arise or be different on your end that isn’t covered in this guide.
  • NMM requires Microsoft .Net Framework 4.5 to run. Most systems should already be running this by default, if you’re unsure, Download it Here.
  • The term "Directory" refers to a folder. NMM refers to Nexus Mod Manager.
  • Make sure you have enough space. This cannot be stressed enough. A "Virtual Install" directory will be created to unpack any mods downloaded, this directory can get quite large. This directory can be chosen and changed, and will be covered in setting up NMM for the first time and navigating the settings menu.

Downloading Nexus Mod Manager

If you have not already downloaded it, NMM is available Here. If you have, excellent! The first step is complete.


The latest version of NMM will always be displayed at the top of any page on nexusmods.com - NMM will prompt you on initial start if it finds an update, but if it does not, this will tell you if a newer version is avaliable. More on that when we get to using NMM.

Supported Games

Take note: On the download page is a list of currently supported games. If the game isn’t listed, sorry, it isn’t supported yet.

The current list of games (as of this current revision of the manual) are as follows:


Running the installer


Next step is to run the setup program and choose a directory where you would like NMM installed. This runs like any normal program setup. Choose your directory (or leave it default) and hit Next.

Release Notes



If you install NMM for the first time or in case you update NMM this screen may be seen,

if a fundamental or major update is done, telling you what vitally is going to change (update). It is advised to read it, especially when updating, as it could have some bad or unexpected ramifications down the line.

Change log

The next screen is a "change log" and will inform you about new features and bug fixes.


Clicking "Continue" will complete the installation/update.

Scanning for games


The first time you install NMM, it will search your computer for instances of the games it manages. As each game is found, a green checkmark will appear. Clicking this will confirm the directory location of the game. Clicking the red "x" will stop the search for any given game. You can repeat this procedure of search for games at anytime in the NMM user interface especially after you’ve installed another game. This process will be described in one of the following sections dealing with the NMM interface. When the search is complete and ran properly, NMM can be opened by clicking the “OK” button. After the starting/loading screen - screenshot - NMM will show the games it found on your system in a new menu.

Selecting a game to manage


Highlight/select the game you want to manage. You can change your selection at any time when you restart NMM in this menu and also at any time in the NMM user interface as described in the following section.


Once NMM is installed, you will get the option to run it. Do as you wish here, but if you’re reading this, running it is most likely what you want to do.

If you get this without error:


You’re done, and ready to start using NMM.

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The User Interface


This is NMM. Everything we have done so far was in support of getting to this point. The very top line in the image is the title line. On the left, see the version of NMM being ran and the game being managed, On the right are the standard Windows interface icons.

Directly below the title line, the Menu Bar contains a lot of functionality for managing Nexus Mod Manager.

The Launcher

From left to right, the first menu item is the Game Launcher Menu. I call attention to the down arrow that is part of the launcher. This expands the launcher window so that the user can see all of the configured launchers present.


For more information concerning Configuring Launchers click (here).

The Local Profile Manager

To the right of the Launcher you will find the Local Profile Manager Menu. This is where the user creates new profiles and changes between profiles. Any profiles you have successfully downloaded from the Nexus also appear here. Once again, selecting the down arrow will expand the choices for interacting with profiles.


The active profile’s name is displayed in grey in the menu bar. Once the menu is opened, the user is presented with a list of choices for managing Both the current profile and for some management of other profiles. Additionally, this is where the user changes active profiles by simply clicking them.. As you can see this menu is self explaining. If you choose New Profile eg. a context menu will open and you can give your current profile any name. It will then be marked in grey as the current/present profile.

One step further to the right is the Tools Menu.

The Tools Menu


Reset UI

Reset UI clears any changes you have made to the column widths in the main window and sets them to their defaults.

Disable all active mods

Disable all active mods disables every mod in the profile. Does what it says. Useful in a new profile if you want to start over, but not from the beginning. It leaves the disabled mods in the profile.

Uninstall all active mods

Uninstall all active mods is much like Disable all active mods, except more extreme. Use with caution. The main use for this command is if you wanted to start from scratch or create an empty profile for Beta testing. A word of caution. Before using this command, make a new profile. Name it as you please. You can’t easily undo this step, so make sure it is what you want.

Restore the backup profile

Restore the backup profile restores the profile from a save made in the Profile tab.

Change virtual folders

Change Virtual folders gets the user to this screen.


It displays your present Virtual Folder Setup and gives several options for making changes. NMM is very good at placing these files in the correct place and the user should usually accept the default values.

The box does a good job of explaining what you are doing and how you do it. The Multiple hard drive features may be greyed out and unavailable when you first open this dialog box. In that case, you would need to close NMM and relaunch using the Run as Administrator prompt after right clicking the NMM icon.

Reset archive invalidation

Reset Archive Invalidation sets the NMM Read only flag for NMM files and folders to off, so that NMM can manage them.

The Folder Menu

This is the NMM Folder Menu. It is a direct link to your game installation, the Mods Folder for that game and the Install Info Folder for that game.


This menu relieves you from having to search through drives and directory trees looking for your files associated with a particular game.

Open game folder

Go to your game installation folder.



Open NMM mods folder

Go to the mods folder.



Open NMM install info folder

Go to the install info folder.



The Settings Menu

The first thing the user may notice about the Settings menu is the lack of a down arrow. That is because unlike the other menu items, Settings uses a dialog box for changing NMM settings. There are 4 tabs in the dialog box, beginning with a General tab as illustrated below.


The General Tab

The general tab contains information about your file associations, a set of options you can change at will and some path options for use in running NMM. Really, you should probably leave these settings on default unless there is a reason to change them.

The Mod Options Tab

The Mod Options Tab is pretty straightforward. I opened the Format Box to illustrate the Options available. The Compression Box has a similar number of options.


The Download Options Tab

The download options tab is where you set your preferences for downloading files from the Nexus. This is also the location of the fix for users of Windows 8.x with the Chrome Browser.


Download options for premium members

Premium members have several options (selectable servers, multithreaded downloads and selectable number - max. 10 - concurrent downloads) available to them that are not available to non-premium members.



Download options for non-premium members (none):



The game tab

This is referred to as the Game Tab because it is only associated with the specific game you are managing. You may have seen some of these options before, but here they all are in one place.


The mod directory and Install info are customizable for each game, best before installing mods.. The easiest way is to customize/create a path on the same HDD the corresponding game was installed. Keep in mind that there must be enough space on the HDD for the "Virtual install" (the more mods and plugins, the more space, of course.)

Custom launchers

Below your game directories, you see a box for configuring Custom launchers. You may remember custom launchers from the very first tab. This is where you build them. The Command line is where you select the game launcher you will use for this Custom launcher. That sounds strange, doesn’t it? In this field, you would navigate to your game folder, where all the optional files that can launch the game reside. This field must contain the entire path for the launcher. This list includes the normal launcher, any launchers added by a tool, such as a script extender, and you can select the Game.exe file to launch the game.

The second field contains any arguments for the launcher to process when launching the game.

The Search Box

Search for installed mods:

In the UI Interface there is a search bar left to the tips icon (light bulb).


If you look for a certain installed mod, simply punch in the mod’s name or another character related to the mod’s name. NMM will immediately offer what was found or matched. That is quite a bit easier than scrolling through a boat load of mods.


That works in the category view as well.


How to switch alphabetical or category views is described in the section Mods View, Tool 6 (Categories) and Tool 7 (NMM views).

Simply punch in the mod’s name to get displayed what NMM found.


That feature comes in handy if you want to uninstall a mod.


This feature is comfortable as well, if you look for a mod you uninstalled - not deleted completely - for the purpose to reinstall it. Such mods are still listed in the Mods tab and marked as uninstalled (red circle before the mod’s name).

How to reinstall such mods with two clicks will be described in the section Uninstalling Mods.

Folder for supported tools:

NMM has the integrated feature for starting external applications like eg. sorting mods from the NMM user interface. Hover over the tool folder icon "Supported Tools" right of the search bar or click the small arrow on the right of it.


The list that is opened generally displays only the applications that support the game you currently have selected with NMM. You can run a search now for the tool or tools you have installed on your system. To run the search (in this example: for LOOT) click the application you want to look for.


NMM will open a new menu to select the folder where the .exe file of the application/tool you have installed on your system is located.

Note:The corresponding folder can be a default installation or a default download folder. It might also be a folder you previously created or customized.


If you found the corresponding folder (in this example: a customized folder for "LOOT", a plugin sorting or load order optimization tool) confirm with “OK”


If you did all correctly NMM will integrate the link to the application launcher into the NMM folder Supported Tools.


You can start this tool/application now from NMM as well. Simply click it.


That is all for the folder Supported Tools.

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Change Game Mode

As mentioned earlier - in the section dealing with the installation of NMM - you can change the Game Mode at anytime, as far as you run at least two NMM supported games..

In the header of the User Interface, on the right is a circular arrow.


If you click that symbol or the small arrow a menu will open and offer few options to change your Game Mode.


You have three options:

  • Switch to another game (listed in that menu).
  • Change Default Game (at your will)
  • Rescan Installed Games

Switch to another game

Highlight and ….


… and click the game you want to change.


NMM will restart ….


… with the game you selected.


That is all on changing a game.

Change Default Game

Whenever you start NMM, the Game Selection screen will be displayed for selecting the game you want to start with NMM.


You can adjust NMM that way, that your current favourite game is highlighted as a default every time you start NMM. You can do this in the NMM User Interface, Change Game Mode..


Click Change Default Game... and NMM will return to the Game Selection screen.


Click the game you want to have highlighted as a default every time you start NMM. NMM will restart with the game you selected. The game you selected will now be highlighted as default in the game selection screen every time you start NMM, unless you change your default game again (as described above).

That is all on Change Default Game.

Rescan Installed Games

As mentioned in the section of Installing NMM, you can run a scan for new installed NMM supported games at any time.


Click Rescan Installed Games... to start the scan (as you did after you installed NMM for the first time).

It is the same procedure as in the first scan: As each game is found, a green checkmark will appear. Clicking this will confirm the directory location of the game. Clicking the red "x" will stop the search for any given game.


After the scan is done your new game will be added to your Game Selection screen.


That is all on Rescan Installed Games and all on Change Game Mode in the whole.

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The Plugin View

Plugins, tools and load order

*Plugins*so to speak are mods with an .esm or .esp file format.

After switching to the Plugins tab NMM will display in the field on the left your game.esm, DLCs, official updates and the plugins you installed.

Important note:

Your plugins as displayed from top downwards represent the "load order" so to speak.

Plugins can be activated or deactivated without reinstalling or uninstalling them. Deactivating a plugin within a midgame is generally not recommended. Plugins that have a checkmark before the plugin’s name are active. Those that are not checkmarked are not active. Launching the game with the game named launch button on the top left hand side will load all the checkmarked plugins and start the game’s launcher.

Further on some tools that are displayed in the column on the leftmost.


These are

  • The up and down arrows to move a highlighted plugin up or down.
  • The load order of plugins is quite essential for a stable or working game.
  • The load order determines the order the plugins are loaded when you start the game with NMM. This is important so far, as some plugins require other plugins being active and loaded before. Apart from that, plugins that are loaded last or after others will always have domination over those that are loaded before. Authors often give information on that in their mod description on what position to put a plugin. It is highly recommended to follow their corresponding instructions.
  • The buttons to checkmark or uncheck all the listed plugins.
  • A tool to export your current load order to save it on your system or to import a load order to restore it from our system.

The Mods View

General mod view:

If you click on the Mods tab after you started NMM, you will see at a glance the mods you have installed in accordance with your current profile. As long as you have not installed any mods at all, this field will be empty, of course.



The number of mods includes the plugins (mods that have an .esm or .esp format) and mods, that do not have an .esm or .esp format. So far, you might see more mods in the whole in this view than plugins in the plugins tab. The current status is displayed at the bottom of NMM.


That is nothing to get a headache from.

The Tools

Tool 1 (for installing mods)

The green cross in the tool column is the button to install a plugin/mod to your game and add it to the Mods tab under the name sorting bar. Clicking the small down arrow on the right of it ….


… will provide you with the option either to install a plugin/mod from a rar or zip archive you downloaded before to your system ….


… or directly from the author’s mod page.


After you made your choice from where to install a mod and click "OK" it will be added in grey to the Mods tab under the name sorting bar. NMM will position it in alphabetical order, in this example descending.


Adding a mod for installation can take few seconds or few minutes. That usually depends on the file size of the plugin/mod.

You can check the status of the download or movement from your system to the NMM. Move your


mouse cursor over the "Download Manager" at the bottom and NMM will display the current status of the download or movement to NMM.


These information will be stored there until you quit/close NMM.

After the plugin/mod has been moved to NMM (grey) click it to highlight it. A green checkmark will appear below the green cross.


If you click the green checkmark, NMM will immediately unpack the plugin/mod for installation.

That can take few seconds or minutes. That depends on the file size of the plugin/mod.

You can check the current status of the unpacking procedure, if you move the mouse cursor over the "Mod Activation Queue" at the bottom.


NMM will display the current status of the running installation.



If you uninstall a mod you can check the status of the running uninstallation here as well. These information will be stored until you quit/close NMM.

When the installation of the plugin/mod is complete NMM, will set a small green checkmark directly before the plugin’s/mod‘s name.



Note:The order the mods that are listed in the Mods tab has no effect at all on and nothing to do with the "load order" in the Plugins tab.

Uninstalling Mods

The red circle in the tool column of the Mods tab is the button to uninstall mods.


You have two options to uninstall a mod.

One option is to uninstall the mod, but keep it listed in the Mods tab below the mod name sorting bar.

Highlight the mod you want to uninstall and click the red circle.


The mod is uninstalled now, but still listed and marked as uninstalled/not active (a red circle before the mod’s name).

If you want to reinstall the mod later, this option is quite comfortable. You only need to highlight it and click the green checkmark that now appears again below the green cross. Clicking it will reinstall the mod.


The other option to uninstall a mod is to remove it completely from NMM. Highlight the corresponding mod and do a right click on it. A menu will open and offer the options you have.


If you click the option "Delete mod (permanently) and uninstall" a warning will pop up, that the mod will be removed. If you confirm...


… and click "yes", the mod will be uninstalled and removed from NMM.



Note:If you had downloaded the mod manually and installed it from your system, the mod archive in rar or zip format will still be there. If you had downloaded and installed it directly via the url option, it will be completely removed from your system.

In case you want to reinstall the mod you uninstalled/removed completely, you need to go through the steps and options (installing from system or url) as described above in the section "Tool 1 (for installing mods).

Editing Missing Mod Info

If you highlight a mod and click „Gets missing mod info" ….


… a menu/window will open and display info about the mod, author, description etc.

The different pieces of information, except the mod name in field on the left, can be edited. This has no effect at all on the mod or game. A click on „OK" or „Cancel“ will close the window again.


A click on the folder icon in that menu will open your Explorer. You can add an image you have on your system or a screenshot you made, that represents the corresponding mod. A click on the brush icon will remove the image.


A further click on „OK" or „Cancel“ will close the window again.

That is all for this tool (Tool 3).

Checking for Mod Updates

The tool Check for mod updates …..




You have two options. Check for updates and check for missing outdated mods.


Toggle Endorsements

After you downloaded a mod from Nexus and installed it you can endorse it with NMM. There is no need to visit the corresponding Nexus mod page for this purpose. Highlight the mod ….


… and click the thumbsup icon in the tool column.




You can withdraw your endorsement with NMM as well. Just click the thumbsup icon again or highlight any mod you had endorsed earlier to withdraw your endorsement this way.

You need to wait at least 15 minutes after you downloaded a mod from Nexus before you can endorse it. The endorsement works only for downloads you did with the same Nexus account. In case you do not meet these requirements a pop info will let you know this.


That applies as well, if a mod is not available anymore on Nexus, of course.


That is all for Tool 6 (Toggles the mod endorsement).


Whatever method you prefer to sort your mods in NMM - in categories or alphabetical order - you first need to know, how you can display your preferred sorting method. So let us turn to Tool 7 (NMM views) first. This is the tool to choose your preferred view. After that we will return to tool 6 Categories. If you prefer to order your mods in alphabetical order generally, you can skip the category section anyway.

If you prefer ordering your mods in categories open the category view if necessary as described above. The folders are listed in alphabetical order. The figures on the folders are the number of mods that are inside the folders. If you click the small arrow on Tool 6 (categories) ...


… NMM will offer a number of options for ordering your mods and arranging categories.

Adding new/own categories:

Clicking "Categories: add new category" …


… will create a "new" category folder.


You can rename now the "new" folder to your liking. This is a bit tricky. First, click on the folder to highlight it.


Click again into the highlighted bar and keep the mouse cursor in it and move the cursor to left in direction to the new folder. That should make the folder now ready for renaming it.


You can now rename the folder as you like (in this example we chose "Weather and lightning").


After renaming your folder just click anyway in NMM.


Done. NMM will add the new/renamed folder and integrate it into the Nexus default alphabetical order.

The category folders:

As a default, Nexus displays only folders that contain one or more mods. More on that later.


A click on the " + “ before the folders will open them and display the mods that are assigned to it.


A click on the " - “ will close the folder again.

Expanding categories:

If you want to display all the mods within all the folders you can do this with only two clicks.First click on "the small arrow" to open the submenu again.


Second click "Categories: expand all categories".


All the folders are open now. You can close them again one by one as described in the section "The Category folders" or in just two clicks - as you opened them. First click on the “small arrow” again. Second click on “Categories: Collapse all categories”.


This will close all the folders that are open. It does not matter whether you opened all or only some selected ones previously.


Reset mods to Nexus site defaults:

There are two options to reset categories to the Nexus site default. If you have created your own categories or if you have mods that are "unassigned", the corresponding tool will reset them to the Nexus default for the game you currently have loaded in NMM. So far this function is self explaining.


Vice versa you can remove categories or assign all mods as unassigned.

Remove all categories:


That is self explaining as well. You can always remove all categories and rearrange everything by going through the previous options as described above.

Hidden categories

NMM (as default) only displays the category folders that contain one or more mods.

To have a look at all the categories for the game you loaded with NMM, including those that are empty, just click the "small arrow" again and select “Categories: toggle hidden categories”.


This will display all the Nexus site default and your created categories for the game you currently have loaded with NMM.


That is all for Toggle Categories.

Assigning mods to another Nexus site default or self created category folder:

You can always assign mods to a different default or own created category folder on your own discretion.

You can do this either in the alphabetical order view or the category view. The steps are the same. In the following example we move a mod in the category view. First open the category folder that contains the mod you want to assign to another folder (click on the " + “ before the folder). In this example we chose a mod in the category folder “Unassigned"


Click the mod you want to move to highlight it.


Right click on the highlight bar to open the next menu.


The options that are displayed are self explaining concerning Deactivate, Reinstall, Uninstall and Mod update warnings. To assign a mod to a different folder go on "Move to". That will open a column with all the default and self created category folders. To choose one that is out of sight, click on the small arrow at the top or at the bottom to move the column up or down.


In this example, we want to move the highlighted mod from "unassigned" (in grey) to “Visuals and Graphics”.


A click on "Visual and Graphics" will move the highlighted mod (in this example “Fancy Kills”) immediately to this category.


Nexus Mod Manager Views

A click on "Switches the Mod Manager views" ...


… will change your alphabetical order (ascending or descending) to the Nexus default categories


… and vice versa. That is all for Tool 7 (NMM views).

Mods tab, mod organizing/sorting, Mod Version column:

The NMM Mods tab displays 7 columns: Name, Category, Install Date, Download Date Endorsement, Mod Version and Author. Each column can be sorted in alphabetical, date or numeric order ascending or descending. Simply click the corresponding header of the column.



The column "Mod Version" displays at first position the currently available version or update on the author’s mod page and at second position the version you currently have installed. That is all concerning the sorting in the Mods tab.

Mod Version column:

Let us pay a bit more attention on the Mod Version column.


It displays at first position the currently available version of the mod on the author’s Nexus mod page and at second position the version you currently have installed. That is not all. This column has a further feature that comes in quite handy. Move the cursor over any version number.


A pop up info will inform you, that a new version might be available. To check more details you only need to click the version number. As said in the pop up info you will immediately be taken to the author’s mod page. After that, the version number changes the colour into purple to indicate, that you opened the author’s mod page within the current NMM session. After you restart NMM all the version numbers will be displayed in blue again.

Note:If a new mod version actually suits your game often depends on your mod configuration and the mod files itself. You might have an updated main file with a suitable optional or additional file of a mod. Main and additional files might have different version numbers. That depends on the author. Often authors only update their main file with a new version number, but not any optional or additional files that are still suitable. That is the reason why you might be given the information that an update is available, although you actually are up to date. Best you check the details on the corresponding mod page thoroughly before you download and try to install any files that actually are obsolete.

That is all for the Mod tab and The Mods view.

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The Profile Tab

Click the Profiles tab to display your created, saved, backed up, local and online profiles.Your local profiles are listed on the left.


Your online profiles (backed up and shared or not shared) are listed on the right.


You have a number of options for local and online profiles.

If you highlight one of your local profiles, a tool column will open on the left and display the available options for this profile.


Tools displayed in grey are not available.

Click "Backup Profile" ...


… to open a menu that provides with different options for creating a backup.


The options you are offered are self explaining.

A click on "Yes" will upload your profile and take you to the corresponding Nexus page.


A further click on "Yes" will open the corresponding self explaining menu to set your preferences.


After you clicked "Submit" a further page will open to offer the upload of profile related images. The menu is self explaining.


Your profile is on Nexus now. "View Profile" will open your profile page as displayed on Nexus for you and other users (as far you chose that option in preference menu).


You can edit or delete your online profile on Nexus or with NMM at any time.

Click (for this example) Skyrim profiles to get to the profiles library so to speak.


If you made your profile public it will be displayed together with public profiles by other users.

In NMM Profiles tab your online profile is now added to Backed Up/Shared Profiles on the right.


The other tools available for local profiles are self explaining.

Backup and Share Profile saves your profile and makes it public for sharing with other users.

Toggle Sharing Profile makes a public profile non-public and vice versa. You can toggle sharing repeatedly at any time.


Rename Profile opens a menu to change the name of the highlighted profile.

Delete Profile Page will take down your online profile page, but keep your local profile.


Delete Profile will remove your local profile.

View Profile will open immediately your corresponding profile page (with all features like editing, adding images etc.)


Refresh Online Profiles List will update your online profiles according to any changes you have made in your local ones by adding or uninstalling mods since the first upload or last update of your corresponding online profiles.

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