Per machine or per user installation
Posted 30 October 2006 - 11:17
In line with the Windows Vista recommendations I wish to switch to using an MSI based installer and have tried Visual Studio Installer 1.1
Q1. So far I have not found any way of specifying a Per Machine installation. Can I do this with VSI 1.1?
Q2. I cannot find any references to Manifests - is this not in VSI 1.1?
Q3. Does anyone have a recommended product to enable me to produce Vista-aware installations and not break the bank?
Posted 30 October 2006 - 12:11
For Q1, you need to declare a property ALLUSERS=1 and all folder property references will start finding the common all-user version. For example, StartMenuFolder will find something like C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu rather than C:\Documents and Settings\<CURRENT_USER>\Start Menu. It's quite a powerful property.
For Q3, I use WiX. It's open source and exceptionally powerful for all your MSI creation needs.
Posted 30 October 2006 - 13:39
Could you please point me in the right direction as to how I add the property declaration in Visual Studio Installer.
Posted 30 October 2006 - 14:04
Posted 30 October 2006 - 14:29
I am beginning to think that Visual Studio Installer has been constrained in its abilities.
Maybe there is a way of taking the .MSI output and adding the missing pieces with another tool, but this is starting to get a bit messy.
Posted 30 October 2006 - 14:39
|msiexec /i "<PATH>/<PACKAGE.msi>" ALLUSERS=1|
Personally, I'd take the switch to WiX if you're at all familiar with XML. I wasn't and found it quite daunting, but I really can't imagine coding installation projects anyother way. You can even include the project into your solution and create the MSI as part of your build. All the main dialogs and behaviour are already created by the WiX community (including several loc files for international markets) and in the simplest case you only need to tell it which features/component/files/registry elements you want to include. Then adapt for greater complexity as needs arise.
Edited by Gareth at Serif, 30 October 2006 - 14:39.
Posted 30 October 2006 - 17:28
I'll monitor this thread for a week to see if anyone else comes up with suggestions, but right now I think the answers to my questions are:
Q1. No, Visual Studio Installer 1.1 cannot produce per machine MSI installs (as recommended by Microsoft in a recent webcast I watched)
Q2. Visual Studio Installer 1.1 knows nothing of manifests, so can't produce a Vista aware MSI install.
Q3. Wix can produce Vista aware MSIs but it seems (to me) like a steep learning curve.
I have looked at InstallAware but it does not import Visual Basic Projects
I have emailed Tarma but they responded "Thanks for your message. We are not supporting Vista yet, and it may be that we will not support it at all. This does not mean that our installers won't run under Windows Vista; it just means that we will not be providing Vista-specific features or support."
Suggestions for deploying VB6 applications to Vista are welcome.
It may transpire that the plethora of warnings emanating from installing VB6 software to a UAC-enabled Vista PC become a way of life.
Posted 30 October 2006 - 17:42