Best Method to deploy and update application

Posted on 2010-11-23
Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have an application that will require it to "Run As Administrator". And yes, before you ask, it has to have the elevated permissions.
I have deployed many programs with the ClickOnce built into visual studio. I love it. However, due to the restrictions of only being able to run "AsInvoker" this method is obviously not the right choice to deploy this application.
Does anyone have any suggestions on what would be the best way to not only deploy but also update the application?  I really like the automatic update functionality of the ClickOnce so if you have any ideas that get close to that it would be appreciated.
Right now, I am thinking of creating a "wrapper" type app that will shell call my app with the required permission level and letting the "wrapper" type app handle the updates. It seems kludgey to me though. Any ideas?
Question by:Coralie Crumrine
  • 2

Accepted Solution

deer22 earned 250 total points
ID: 34201330
Well it can be kind of tricky to write your own, so you might want to use a third party installer/updater.  It is a fun challenge (especially with windows vista/7) though and if you like challenges write your own :)

After I tried several third party installer/updaters they didn't quite do it the way I wanted so in the end I ended up using visual studios setup and deployment and wrote my own updater...

I don't use patches for the msi which is probably the way you should do it.  

I have a manifest file that gets checked whenever the program runs and if any files don't match the latest manifest they are downloaded and replaced/added once all the needed files are downloaded.   The downside is that the msi remains the same so any files that are added after the initial install remain in the directory if the program is uninstalled, but hey it works...


Author Comment

by:Coralie Crumrine
ID: 34201925
I don't mind the challenge of the UAC. I have written modified the manifests that ask for the permission to elevate and did all the signing etc, so that is not a worry.

I have never used patches or updates other than ClickOnce, and doing a search brings up a LOT of ClickOnce pages, thus my confusion.

Do you update by replacing the actual exe file? Thanks for the heads up about the files added afterwards. That is a good point.

Expert Comment

ID: 34202145
Yes, I update any files that need updated including the main exe and the updater if needed.  I use the all users application data folder to download the needed files.
LVL 83

Assisted Solution

CodeCruiser earned 250 total points
ID: 34204022

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