Briefing: InstallShield X
starting at $1199
You might recall that for the version 9, InstallShield merged their
Professional (proprietary script) and Developer (MSI-based) products
into the single InstallShield DevStudio product. Well, this year,
they've gone a step further, by merging in the MultiPlatform and Update
Service bits as well, and the resulting soup-to-nuts setup builder is
dubbed simple InstallShield X. I haven't gotten my hands on a copy yet,
but I did chat with the product managers and see some demos, so here's
what I understand is coming.
There's now one IDE for handling everything: Windows, Linux, Unix,
PalmOS, PocketPC and Windows Mobile solutions can all be constructed
with the same set of tools. They've worked to bring the MultiPlatform
version to parity with the Windows stuff, so there's an easy transition
path for Windows developers who want to move on to cross-platform work.
The new product also includes a starter version of InstallShield's
Update Service, which lets you deliver upgraded versions to users when
they sign on to the Internet. The Starter Edition will notify users of
updates and provide a link back to your Web site for them to download
the updates. If you like, you can upgrade to the Professional Edition,
which enables integrated download and installation of updates. The
Starter Edition is also limited to 50,000 users of your application.
Other new features here include a wizard for installing Windows device
drivers, one-click support for the Java Runtime Engine redistributable,
the ability to save projects for previous versions of InstallShield to
open, a visual dialog editor for the *nix setups, support for
configuring SQL Servers and their databases, and better support for
All in all, this looks like another nice step forward for one of the
leading vendors of setup technology. You can read much more information,
or request an evaluation copy, on the InstallShield Web site.
Mike Gunderloy has been developing software for a quarter-century now, and writing about it for nearly as long. He walked away from a .NET development career in 2006 and has been a happy Rails user ever since. Mike blogs at A Fresh Cup.