PlugIns & directories for materials & components

Hi All, I’d like to introduce myself, My name is Mike Backler. I’ve been using SketchUp since Google SketchUp 4 or 5, but have not used it for about 3 years so I need to do some catching up.
I have 2 main questions at present.

  1. Can SketchUp 2018 Pro use .rb plugIns or must they be .rbz?
  2. Is it possible to have all the collected components and materials in a folder on a separate drive. Space limitations on C drive. If it is possible, how do I direct SketchUp to these folders?
    Thanks for the assistance.

Googles first version was 6 and last was 8.
Yes 2018 can use .rb, .rbz is just a simplified installation system. An rb within a zip.
Not sure why you would use 2018.

The plugins are still .rb files. As @Box indicates, the .rbz is a zip file. It contains the top level .rb file plus any supporting files/folders. Packing the contents up as .rbz makes it possible for SketchUp to automatically install the extension and avoids the possibility of screwing up the installation that was common back in the old days.

Yes, you can do that. Change the paths for Components and Materials in Preferences>Files.

If you are just getting back to using SketchUp you should consider using the current version.

Thanks to both @Box & DaveR for you replies.
My apologies about the version no. on Google Sketchup, I first started using SketchUp in the late 90’s. i cannot remember which version or supplier that was, thought it was Google. Obviously mistaken.
With regards to to upgrading to SketchUp 2021 or 2. Reason is financial. 2019 saw S.A. locked down for almost 10 months and a further 5 months in 2020. This has hit the profession very hard.