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Download: Don't Ignore the complexities of installation packages

By Mark W. Kaelin Editor ·

The download just gives us a glimpse of the complexity associated with the Windows Installer technology. What essential information would you include in the download? What lessons has experience taught you with regard to application installations?

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The last msi

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Download: Don't Ignore th ...

tool I saw from windows was with Visual Studio when VB6 was out. It was extremely flaky, the interface was garbage, and you needed to spend about 5k on courses to make some sense out of what it wasn't telling you.
Presumably it's improved, but I ain't holding my breath.
After two attempts at the laughably crap Deployment wizard you get with VB6, I switched to InnoSetup, simple, quick and best of all it works.

Deloying even simple apps for windows with a "we know best wizard approach", does n't work very well when you are going across different o/s versions. Sometimes it just doesn't work full stop.

I liked the WIX idea though, and I'll investigate that in a spare moment. The thing I most want from an installer is control. Someone else's best guess at what I need is just not acceptable.

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I had my share of the deployment wizard

by Roho In reply to The last msi

Been there, with the deployment wizard and have foudn that it just could not do what I wanted it to do. We are here working with a lot of web projects and we have found that it was impossible to use the same folder name twice in the tree ('controls' and 'images' and the like). It's a structural problem with MSI packages.
We have now moved to NSIS and it gives more control on what happens. It has enormous potential as well, which doesn't bother us as we presently use as little as we need.

My conclusion is that again the guys at Microsoft have missed the setup solution.

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Strange isn't it

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Download: Don't Ignore th ...

You would have thought they were best placed to do it properly.
MS SOP though, two months so you can have a really nice animation while setting up the software incorrectly. That bit they spent two days on.

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