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Advanced Installer: an all-in-one solution to simplify installation
An all-in-one tool to deploy and install your applications in the easiest way possible? This is the promise of Advanced Installer, a software designed by Caphyon, which is not really new, but which we are going to talk about today because it does us a lot of good.
Advanced Installer is useful for us as IT administrators, but not only for that purpose. It is also useful for any developer who wants to distribute and make his productions more accessible thanks, first of all, to the MSIX installation. As its creators like to summarize it " package once, deploy anywhere ", Advanced Installer supports the MSIX format. This offers many advantages, starting with the decoupling of OS and application updates and all the little constraints that can slow down deployment.
MSIX has the advantage of installing only what is needed on the target computer and has the good taste of isolating applications to provide a more secure environment. For Advanced Installer projects, the use of the XML format is another advantage that simplifies development and maintenance, while the SHA256 digital signature is reassuring. It complies with current security standards. Finally, the integration with Visual Studio, continuous integration and collaborative work features are other advantages that tip the balance in favor of Advanced Installer.
For our part, we particularly appreciated the presence of small subtleties that make life much easier. For example, Advanced Installer includes a bootstrapper that allows you to create .exe files in addition to .msi files and, above all, allows you to choose the language, which is obviously very practical when you need to distribute software in different countries and continents. To make matters worse, the user interface is pleasant and well thought out, with rich, detailed and accessible options. It is also possible to customize things with various themes and a powerful WYSIWYG editor.
Functionality is in the air and Advanced Installer could not miss out on the cloud aspects. The creators of the software have logically provided for the possibility of packaging and deploying both "classic" desktop applications and web apps and they allow their publication on sites managed by Azure, but also on the Microsoft Windows Store. Advanced Installer is basically self-contained, but its developers are aware of the need for customization, which is why it is possible to integrate your own C#, C++, PowerShell or VBScript code and use your own custom actions.
Finally, on such a software, the question of royalties can be tricky. In the case of Advanced Installer, this should not be a problem: the license is royalty-free, as the creators like to point out, and it is therefore possible to distribute its installers without additional payments. However, it should be noted that the publisher - Caphyon - sets up several license levels in order to comply with users' needs. All in all, and even though it is clearly not the only one on the market, Advanced Installer meets many needs in an efficient way: creating software packages, updating them and deploying them has rarely been so easy.