I can only suggest for users already using a wordfiles directory with multiple CUSTOMIZED wordfiles (words or color settings) not to use the standard %appdata%\IDMComp\UltraEdit\wordfiles. Copy your wordfiles into a different directory with a name you like and specify this directory in the syntax highlighting configuration dialog. And backup your wordfiles before updating - more precise before launching UltraEdit the first time after the update - for security.
I still use 1 wordfile with currently 18 langugages stored in C:\Programs\UltraEd\Config\Personal.uew. As you can see nothing here is normal. C:\Programs\UltraEd is the UltraEdit program directory.
This is not the default location. But what is default when using German Win98 SE, English WinXP and German Vista? So I started already in 1999 to ignore completely what Microsoft specifies as standard in their Windows versions and which is used by most applications nowadays by default too and install my programs whenever possible never in the default location the installer suggests. For some applications I have even manually manipulated the program directory after installation if the installer did not give me the choice to specify a different directory which of course requires always hacks in the registry.
Personal.uew is not a standard name for a wordfile and the Config directory created by myself containing some of my UltraEdit configuration files like the wordfile or the taglist file is not the UltraEdit default.
The big advantage for me is that UltraEdit is on all my computers always in the same directory and all the files are in the same directory. That makes it very easy to synchronize UltraEdit (and all my other programs installed in the same manner).
The UltraEdit versions from v15.00.0.1033 up to v15.00.0.1043 have had a problem with correct handling the color settings in my wordfile. They were not correct moved from my C:\Programs\UltraEd\uedit32.ini into the wordfile and some of them always changed on every exit. With v15.00.0.1046 all these problems are fixed and now the color settings are correct managed by UltraEdit in my wordfile. The only thing I don't like and which I have also already reported is that UltraEdit updates the color settings on every exit although I never change them and therefore the file time of the wordfile changes all the time. I fixed this by setting the read-only attribute on the wordfile.
What happened in the past with my very special configuration when UltraEdit was updated?
The installer installed the wordfiles into the directory C:\Programs\UltraEd\wordfiles. As you can see I could never use the standard wordfiles in the wordfiles directory of the INI file location because this would be also C:\Programs\UltraEd\wordfiles and so the installer would always overwrite my wordfiles if I would not rename those I want to use. However, this is no a real problem because when I would ever decide to split up my single wordfile into multiple wordfiles, I would use my Config directory as wordfiles directory and not the default "directory of the INI\wordfiles".
But with my special configuration I detected that UltraEdit copied always whole directory C:\Programs\UltraEd\wordfiles to "%appdata%\IDMComp\UltraEdit" on start of UE when this user specific default wordfiles directory does not exist. That's interesting because my uedit32.ini is not there. It looks like current UltraEdit uses always "%appdata%\IDMComp\UltraEdit" and not "directory of the INI\wordfiles" as I expected it and as UltraEdit has used in the past for all other configuration files (menus, toolbars, keyboard file, etc).
"%appdata%\IDMComp\UltraEdit" contained before v15.00 only the file projects.lst which was always created in this directory even on my Win98 SE computer where I have had no APPDATA environment. For 3 weeks I set it autoexec.bat. By the way: I have hacked in the registry of my 3 computers the path to the APPDATA directory to use C:\Programs\Appdata and no problem in the last 10 years with this setting. Again the advantage for me of this hack was that on all my computers the same directory contains the application data files of my programs. As you can see I like homogeneous environments even if Microsoft thinks they must change the user environments with every Windows version.
Before v15.00.0.1046 UltraEdit has always silently without warning updated the modified wordfiles (jacvascript.uew, c_cplusplus.uew) in "%appdata%\IDMComp\UltraEdit\wordfiles". As I reported the problems with the color settings in my wordfile I added a note that this method will be in future very problematic because of the color settings stored in the wordfiles in "%appdata%\IDMComp\UltraEdit\wordfiles". The wordfiles installed by the installer in "UE prog dir\wordfiles" are always without color settings. So a simple and silent copy on start is not a good idea because the users will loose their language color settings when using the standard wordfiles in the standard user wordfiles directory.
I promised IDM to look into the current wordfile update mechanism and sent them a suggestion how this could be done better in future. It looks like IDM has implemented in v15.00.0.1046 a quick workaround to avoid the problem of deleting the color settings of the user and maybe other changes. But as you wrote, this is definitely not a good solution.
I have not yet looked into the wordfile update mechanism and written my suggestion because I have had no time and this is definitely not easy. Multiple wordfiles is not so problematic. Problematic is only that the color settings are stored in the wordfiles. That is no problem for wordfiles created by the users themselvers, but difficult to handle for the standard wordfiles.
There are so many different configurations possible. I and IDM have to take into account INI file (and all other config files) specified on the command line and therefore can be everywhere, INI file in directory specified by UEINIDIR, INI file in program dir, INI file in Windows dir, INI file in %APPDATA%\IDMComp\UltraEdit, color settings stored in the registry instead of the INI, single user environments, multiple users on 1 computer, single user with multiple Windows on the same computer,single user using different user accounts on the same computer, server based environments, new installation, ugrade from older versions (very old ones), just a minor update, standard wordfile customized by the user in the past, a wordfile created by the user and stored in a non standard directory and/or with a non standard name, users with already using UE v15.00 with multiple wordfiles (where?), project specific wordfiles as I use too or a project specific wordfiles directory with multiple project specific wordfiles, ...
It is really a big challenge to find now a wordfile update mechanism for the standard wordfiles as well as for the user color settings which do not result in an additional manual management work by the user. Currently with UE v15.00.0.1046 the user must manage the wordfiles and their color settings manually. UltraEdit does not a good job here for users not using the standard wordfiles unmodified and the standard color settings unmodified.
Because the wordfile and the language color settings management is currently definitely in development, I have not yet updated the readme topic for the syntax highlighting forum to take all the changes of v15.00 into account. It does not make sense to explain how the wordfiles and color settings are now managed for new installations, for upgrades from UE prior v15.00 and for updates from v15.00.x to v15.00.y when it changes from build to build.