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Windows Installer version and .NET Installation

Posted on 2003-02-28
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-15
I am using .NET to build a distribution of my software. I am also using the bootstrap setup.exe that I downloaded from the microsoft site which allows the installation to check to see if the target machine has the .net runtime installed and if not, it installs it.

I have a problem with what I am doing.

On a machine with an out-of-date windows installer software, I got the following error:

"This installation package cannot be installed by the Windows Installer service. You must install a Windows service pack that contains a newer version of the Windows Installer service."

From my reading, the bootstrap is supposed to include the windows installer and install it if necessary. But in my reading, I did not find anything about upgrading an out-of-date windows installer software.

Has any had any experience with this stuff? Is there a way I can use the installation tools in .NET to build a distribution for my software that will install the .NET runtime if necessary, and will also install/upgrade the windows installer software if necessary?

I see when I select on the installation properties to build a windows installer, I get the files:


Which I understand are the windows installers. But according to the directions for using the bootstrap program, I dont need these because the bootstrap program includes them.

Then I found that .NET requires IE5+ to be installed.  But there is no way to include this with the installation program.  Perhaps the best solution is to use InstallShield!

Any ideas?


Question by:bryanwells
  • 2

Expert Comment

ID: 8046069
I tried this path. ie., using the sample bootstrap expample to install dotnetfx.exe with my own installation. It gives all sorts of trouble.
1. the userInterface is ugly ie., it doesnot even give a clue to the  user  as to what it is installing when installind .NET(this will frustrate the users) after that It will start installing your program.
2. It only installs dotnet framework, nothing else..!!! so forget about service packs, IE etc...
3. Once you install this as part of your install, clients will expect you to support this as u installed .net for them, it becoms your headache and not Microsoft's..

I suggest you to not go on this path, anyway when you use the setUp project which comes with VS.NET errors out with proper error(which you can configure to say where to download .net from!) for the user to install .NET.

If you still want to do this, I suggest installshield is the best option.

Accepted Solution

man068 earned 300 total points
ID: 8046083
added to above point,

Microsoft is going to include .NET framework with its future service packs and OS releases.. as far as I know.

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