Could you try this: Start AE and on the splash screen keep the Shift key pressed.
Also, when are you getting this error ?
When AE is starting up during the splash screen. Even if holding shift would work I'd rather solve the issue instead of finding a work around because I could just as easily keep ignoring the message by clicking "ok" when it pops up.
And what happens, if you simply delete the error? The directory itself is not that important, as it merely holds presets and caches for Adobe Media encoder based formats (MPEG-2,WMF, etc.). AE should re-create it, if needed. Short of that, check the permissions on the folder as a starting point...
Yeah that worked! Thanks for the help