[OSGeo-Discuss] osgeo4w setup.exe source code?

Alex Mandel tech_dev at wildintellect.com
Wed Feb 25 17:11:46 PST 2009

Building an msi just adds complication. I also have not seen any open
source tools to do it either. In reality an msi is just a microsoft
compressed database format they invented. Because typical installers
write to registry using an msi prevents you from running more than one
at the same time. In the case of the QGIS installer and other products
on the osgeo4w, the exe doesn't actually write to the registry. It's
more like a self extracted zip file, that also creates shortcuts.

The normal qgis installer was also exe based as it is built using the
extremely common open source installer tool from Nullsoft (the makers of

In terms of security, there's no reason to think an msi is any more
secure than an exe and running msi require that the end user always have
 the correct windows installer library installed. Since Microsoft no
longer supports some older versions of windows, if a Visual Studio tool
was used to build the installer there's a chance older(Win2k,WinXP)
users would be out of luck.


nicholas.g.lawrence at mainroads.qld.gov.au wrote:
>> Hello list.
>> Thanks everyone for the great work done with OSGeo4W.
>> I have a strange (maybe) question. I suppose that osgeo4w setup.exe is
>> a fork of the cygwin's setup. Is it possible to view/download its
>> source code?
>> Thanks, Giovanni
> I have a different question.
> Is setup.exe the best way to install software on microsoft windows?
> Has Windows Installer, that is an .msi file been considered?
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_installer
> I know that my IT section has a strong preference for software
> to be installed via .msi.
> Regards,
> nick
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