Most of the developers will have to distribute their application after they have done with their application development, either for application testing or distribution. There are many ways to distribute an application in Windows, today we will look at a simple yet powerful Windows Installer builder, Advanced Installer. The latest version of the Advanced Installer can be downloaded from their official website, http://www.advancedinstaller.com/ for free.
Even though Advanced Installer is a free software, it support quite a lot of templates for building an installer. We will focus on the generic free template which is simple for new users.
After you select the Simple from Generic Templates, you be redirected to the main windows of the program which consist of multiple section. The left hand side of the window lists down all the option of the installer that are available for modification.
In Product Details, you can edit and fill in all the information about the application you want to distribute such as Product Name, Product Version, Company Name, and some Product Support Info.
Next, you will need to add in all the files and folder require for you application to work properly, including all the executable file, library file and etc. You can add in the files in Files and Folders option under Resources category.
After you add all the required files and folders into the setup, you may proceed to modify settings on Registry, and installation dialogs before continue to final steps. Installation dialogs are pretty simple to configure, you just have to ensure you choose the correct setting such as launch application on finish installation as desired or overwrite prompt when chosen installation path has a previous installation.
After you have done with the configuration, you may now proceed to build and compile the installer for your application. When the installer has done compiled, you will find a MSI installer for your application in the compilation folder, which is same as the one you saved your installer project.
You may now happily distribute your application with the built MSI installer!
As a whole, the Advanced Installer offer simple but yet powerful features which allow users with no skills or knowledge on installer building to setup and build their own application installer to distribute their own application throughout their community or Internet, which save a lot of works when trying to get something difficult done!