Adding Support for Automatic Updates to an Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI Installation

InstallShield 2012 Spring

Project: This information applies to the following project types:

Advanced UI
Suite/Advanced UI

Edition: The Advanced UI project type is available in the Professional edition of InstallShield. The Suite/Advanced UI project type is available in the Premier edition of InstallShield. For information about the differences between these two project types, see Advanced UI Projects vs. Suite/Advanced UI Projects.

Advanced UI and Suite/Advanced UI installations have the ability to automatically check for an updated Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI Setup.exe file that you host on your Web site, and download and launch it if it is available. The updated Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI Setup.exe file can be used to deploy upgrades and patches for your latest Advanced UI and Suite/Advanced UI packages.

Requirements and Recommendations for Supporting Automatic Updates

If you want to include support for automatic updates in your Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI installations, the following guidelines are recommended when you are preparing your base setup launchers and your update setup launchers for your Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI projects.

Decide the URL that you will use for hosting the Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI update setup launcher. The URL should contain the absolute path to the update setup launcher, including the file name.

You will need to specify the update URL in your base Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project.

At a minimum, the update setup launcher must be digitally signed. For the best end-user experience, the same digital signature should be used to sign the update setup launcher and the base setup launcher.
When you are configuring the Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project for the update setup launcher, the run-time location of the packages must be either extracted from the setup launcher or downloaded from the Web. The update setup launcher cannot rely on packages that are stored on the source media.

Note that your base setup launcher can use packages that are stored on the source media.

For instructions on how to specify the run-time location for specific packages in an Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project, see Specifying a Run-Time Location for a Specific Package in an Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI Project.

Note that you can override the run-time location for all packages in an Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project. To learn more, see Specifying the Run-Time Location for Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI Packages at the Release Level.

Adding Automatic Update Support

To add automatic update support to a base Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project:

1. Open the Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project that contains the package for which you want to enable automatic update support.
2. In the View List under Media, click Releases.
3. In the Releases explorer, select the release that you want to configure.
4. On the Setup.exe tab, in the Update URL setting, enter the absolute path URL (starting with either http:// or https://) that you want to use for the future path to the update setup launcher that you will make available for download to target systems.
5. On the Signing tab, it is recommended that you enter digital signature information and configure the release to sign the Setup.exe launcher.

To prepare the update setup launcher for an Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project:

1. Open the Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI project that you want to update, and update it as necessary.
2. In the View List under Media, click Releases.
3. In the Releases explorer, select the release that you want to configure.
4. On the Signing tab, enter digital signature information and configure the release to sign the Setup.exe launcher. It is recommended that you use the same digital signature that was used to sign the base Setup.exe launcher.

Run-Time Behavior for Automatic Updates

If the base Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI setup launcher runs a non-maintenance operation such as an install operation at run time, the Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI setup launcher checks the update URL for a download. If a download is not available in the update URL that was specified in the base project, the base setup launcher runs.

If a download is available, the base Advanced UI or Suite/Advanced UI setup launcher downloads it and then verifies its digital signature.

If the digital signature in the update setup launcher matches that in the base setup launcher, the update setup launcher runs automatically.

If the digital signature does not match, or if the base setup launcher is not digitally signed, a security warning is displayed, allowing the end user to choose whether to proceed with the update setup launcher.

If the update setup launcher is not digitally signed, the installation fails, and the debug log reports the digital signature problem.

See Also