Course info
Mar 10, 2015
3h 31m

The WiX Toolset is an open source tool for creating Windows Installer packages. It offers complete access to all the features provided by Windows Installer, but in a pragmatic, programmer-oriented way. This course provides a primer on Windows Installer technology, and then gets you up to speed on the WiX Toolset. You will learn how to create Windows installer packages, take advantage of WiX extensions, plan for product upgrades, and even how to create an installation bootstrapper for installing your application and all its prerequisites.

About the author
About the author

Matthew has spent nearly two decades developing software in the aerospace industry. While professionally he’s focused mostly on Microsoft technology, he loves learning and using all types of digital technology. Matthew’s experience varies from the design of object oriented class libraries, WPF-based UI’s to setup projects using the WiX Toolset.

Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Hi. This is Matthew Clendening and welcome to this course, which serves as an introduction to the WiX toolset. The WiX toolset is a collection of tools used primarily to create Windows Installer packages or MSI files. WiX is proven technology, having first been released back in 2004 and it's used to create installers for some of today's best known Windows software like Microsoft Office, SQL Server, and Visual Studio. Best of all, the WiX toolset is open source, free to use, and actively developed. With WiX you can produce production quality installations for your own applications and this course will show you how. In this module we'll first talk about the overall setup experience that is typical in Windows, both from a users perspective and from that of a setup developer. We'll talk about what the WiX toolset does and some of the tools it provides. Next, we'll setup our system, so we can use and work with WiX, then we'll jump in and build our first setup project in Visual Studio.

Essential Windows Installer Concepts
Hey again. Welcome back. This is Matthew Clendening and in this module we're going to explore some essential concepts about Windows Installer. The WiX toolset is used to create Windows Installer packages, and while WiX makes it straightforward to create these packages, it doesn't go out of its way to shield you from the underlying Windows Installer architecture, so it's no surprise that having an understanding of some basic Windows Installer concepts will go a long way in helping you understand how to better construct your installations. Additionally, knowing some Windows Installer fundamentals will help you understand why the WiX syntax is often structured the way it is. In this module we'll first talk about what Windows Installer is. Next, we'll look at installation packages and specifically focus on the installation database. We'll show how to look at the installation database with helpful tools that are freely available. Next, we'll learn about Msiexec, the command line tool for interacting with installation packages. We'll then look at generating a log file that captures the details of what happened during a products install. Then we'll proceed to cover a number of high level concepts that are really helpful to know when working with Windows Installer. After you've completed this module you should have a better overall understanding of Windows Installer and be better prepared to learn the basics of the WiX toolset to create installation packages.

Creating Installation Packages With the WiX Toolset - Part 1
Hi. This is Matthew Clendening with Pluralsight and welcome to this module on Creating Installation Packages with the WiX Toolset Part 1. If you've been following this course from the start you've already been introduced to the WiX toolset and gotten a primer on Microsoft's Windows Installer technology. In this module we're going to start learning the basics of the WiX toolset and how to use it to create Windows Installer packages. We'll start by first learning about the sample application that we will later build an installer for. Next, we'll look specifically at how to create a new WiX setup project and some of the settings you can control. Then we'll look at how to setup the directories in a setup project. Next, we'll learn how to create components, files, and features. We'll learn how to get the setups user interface up and running. Finally, we'll see how to search for items on the target system. We've got a lot to go over, so let's get started.

Creating Installation Packages With the WiX Toolset - Part 2
Hi. This is Matthew Clendening with Pluralsight and welcome back to Part 2 of Creating Installation Packages with the WiX Toolset. In the previous module we covered the basic WiX syntax needed to design any setup project. We're going to continue in this module to discover essential concepts and we'll also get some practical experience creating some actual setup packages for our sample application. In this module I'll show you how to create shortcuts for launching applications and also how to create a special uninstall shortcut. Next, we'll see how to use WiX to define custom actions. After that we'll create our first installer for Version 1 of the GetGuid application. Then we'll see how to better organize our setup projects with fragments. I'll then show you how to make sure your setup projects can upgrade previously deployed versions. After that we'll create the installer for Version 2 of GetGuid. Finally, we'll cover how to create a bootstrapper to install any prerequisites our applications require.