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how to deploy my application to one server

Posted on 2011-03-09
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I'm an Office VBA programmer who has used VB6 to run programs on servers. I've got my first VB.NET version 2008 application ready to go. I need help getting it deployed. The VS2008 help offers many choices. I can't figure out how to do the simple one that makes sense to me. But maybe I'm thinking about it wrong in VB.NET.

I've built and published my project to a folder, then transferred it to the server. Then I run the setup.exe, the application installs and runs.

So now I'm trying to schedule the application and I can't figure out where the .exe file is to put in the scheduler is. The old VB6 version of the program shows up in the Scheduled Tasks list of options, but not my new VB.NET program. Also, I can't figure out how to launch the application and pass in an argument like I used to with the VB6 "application.exe /arg1" syntax.

These programs are only going to run on the server, I'm going to install them and then periodically update them, I need to be able to launch them with arguments for testing & debugging, and I need to have them run as Scheduled Tasks (which is their purpose).

Any guidance on simplifying my options in VS 2008 would be greatly appreciated.
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Question by:GordonPrince
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by:gamarrojgq
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Hi,

The installer probably ask you the destination path for your application, so you can look it up in C:\Program files.

To debug your application passing it commands you can right click your project and select properties, and select the Debug Tab and in Startup Options you can add the commands you want to send.

did you application have User Interface? or is a Console application?
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by:GordonPrince
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The installer didn't prompt me for anything, and I don't see anything in C:\Program Files, or anywhere else I can think of. I'm missing something simple here. Is there an .exe file for my application? If so, I'll search for it, I guess. But why am I not getting the normal installation prompts?

I've got debugging working ok in development, I need to be able to pass arguments in on the production machine. My application displays messages if certain arguments are passed in at run time.

The application has a user interface. I'm not sure what a console application is, so this tells you how confused I am.

Thanks for any clarification. Maybe list the 5 steps to build an installation folder to go on a Windows server, etc.
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by:gamarrojgq
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Ok,

1.- You need to add a Setup/Installation Project to your Application
2.-  Add the Project Result of your application to the Application Folder
3.- Compile the Project and This will generate a Setup.exe and a MSI file in your Bin\Release folder of your application
4.- Copy these two files to your server
5.- Runs the Setup.exe file in the server

A Console Applicacion is a application that do not use user interface, like a command window, so it only receive parameters, do something and then ends

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by:GordonPrince
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This is where I'm lost -- at the beginning.

1. I created a Setup/Installation Project. Do I add it to my Solution? If not, how do I add it to my Application, as you say?

I don't follow 2. -- how do I add the Project Result to my Application folder? Windows Explorer? From VS 2008 File -> Add -> Existing Project? Add the Setup Project to the Application project? Or to the Solution? I hate to be so thick, but I can't identify how to translate your steps into an action to take.
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by:gamarrojgq
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Ok,

Yes, you have to add the Setup/Installation project to your Solution, here is a step by step tutorial to guide you

http://vijirajkumar.blogspot.com/2010/03/create-setup-and-deployment-project.html
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by:GordonPrince
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Maybe I've already gotten this working with ClickOnce deployment. The only thing that doesn't seem to be working on the target server is I don't know where the application.exe file is. So I don't know how to launch it with an argument, or launch it using the Scheduled Tasks.
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by:gamarrojgq
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ok, then maybe you are missing some step with clickonce, here is another tutorial but with ClickOnce

http://www.lynda.com/Visual-Studio-2010-tutorials/essential-training/Creating-a-ClickOnce-application/76641-4.html
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by:GordonPrince
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The tutorial is about how to prepare IIS to manage the deployment. I think what I'm trying to do is so simple. I've already put the files on the server, when I install the program it runs properly. I can run it from the start menu and it runs properly. So how do I run it as a Scheduled Task?

The screen shot below is the result of searching for application.exe. But these are crazy folders that the two copies of "DocketControl Email 2008.exe" are in. search for files result Should their be a copy of the .exe file somewhere with a normal path name? How did I get this wrong?
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by:gamarrojgq
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Ok, lets try another approach, since the installation runs properly without errors, just copy your Application EXE File to a  path you know (let say C:\MyApp) on the server and run it from there, if everything runs ok, then point your Schedule Task to that EXE
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by:gamarrojgq
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It looks like ClickOnce install the application in those weird folders by default, something with the updates maybe, so if you want it to be on a better location you have to use a MSI File

Look at this link

http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en/winformssetup/thread/84b5ed72-2406-4518-97e7-f7c6cf7132a7
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by:GordonPrince
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Here's something I tried that seems to work:

Create a Scheduled Task, I browsed to the published folder on the production system, then added this as the program to run. Add Scheduled Task
When I run it, the Windows Task Manager shows "DocketControl Emailer 2008.exe" is what's running. But I still don't know where that's coming from.

Isn't there something that should control where the .exe file is installed? Shouldn't I have gotten a prompt for where I wanted to install it? If these things are true, then I've just done something peculiar with this project. So I'll flush it and start the publishing part of it over. How do your deployments normally behave? Any ideas what made this one get into the rhubarb? Is it the ClickOnce that is causing the complexity?
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gamarrojgq earned 500 total points
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Yes, You can not change that location. It is installed in the Application Cache and there is no way you can install it to some other folder directly by using ClickOnce.

The first tutorial I send you, will create a MSI file and when you run it, will ask you the destination folder
http://vijirajkumar.blogspot.com/2010/03/create-setup-and-deployment-project.html

So it is up to you to decide wich option use
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