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Thread: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another PC...

  1. #31
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    I installed the dotnet4 framework and then tried the V11 installation again. No luck again... Eventually getting the same memory write error regarding shortcutcreator.exe.
    During the installation I noticed the x86 file you mention above being installed. When I looked in the folder the install created the dotnet framework had been installed, a massive 46 gigs.

    Do you know what the shortcut command would have been if the installation had managed to create it? the database is called "cbfreebie" and the folder it installs to is "c:\firstrate"

    Thanks,

    Paul

  2. #32
    Alpha Software Employee Selwyn Rabins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    A5V11 requires the .Net 4 Framework and the C++ runtime files. The installers for these are available from Microsoft.

    The a5v11 runtime installer will install these on your machine automatically.

    If you build your own installer using the InstallMaker that comes with a5, it will only install a5 runtime files. It does NOT install .net files, or the c++ runtime files.
    You will need to ensure that these files are on the machine before running your a5 install. The install files for .net and c++ runtime files come from microsoft and are freely distributable.



    04/30/2010 09:06 AM 889,416 dotNetFx40_Full_setup.exe
    04/30/2010 09:06 AM 50,449,456 dotNetFx40_Full_x86_x64.exe
    05/28/2010 04:56 PM 5,073,240 vcredist_x86.exe

  3. #33
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Paul,

    A big bunch of us use astrum installer for what you are trying to do. I am not trying to give alpha's program all the blame here, sometimes it is how it is used or the machine being used. Have you tried sending your installation and app to someone else(who is real familiar with alpha) to see what their experience with it is?

    While alpha's installation package works ok, but does not have the robustness and extra abilities needed for installing on many various machines.

    ***As a note: I include the .net files with my installs and install it with astrum as a first step. That way all is in place before the end user can click the startup icon for the app.
    Dave Mason
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  4. #34
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Thanks Dave, if Astrum does the job then great - I'll buy it now.
    I have never used an install package before trying to get to grips with the one in Alpha as traditionally I have never released a mass market product before.
    Is there a crib sheet available that details what Alpha files are required and what registry entries need to be made? or, do I have to create some sort of hybrid installation using Astrum to install the parts that Alpha doesn't and then run the Alpha install from within Astrum?
    Thanks again for your constructive reply.
    Paul

  5. #35
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    I was not knocking alpha's installer at all. I just happened to be using astrum before they got this going and I need it for other stuff sometimes.

    There is some discussion on how different ones install available on this forum. I will give you what I do and you look at some other discussions and use what works best for you.

    I install the runtime and all files in a folder on the c:\ drive.
    I put the application in a folder under the runtime.
    delete any non needed files.
    I make sure all this is working as planned before proceeding.
    make a link to the app on your desktop that works as you want. I make my own .exe, but most do not.
    in astrum, you include all the files(that is the whole thing), your dotnet installer, and c++ runtimes as Selwyn stated above.
    Astrum runs these needed files and can do it before the install or whenever you choose in the install.
    astrum can also get your registry information(there are directions in astrum) and install them as you install.
    It will take you a few tries to get astrum working the way you want, but it is not hard.

    If you want, go to www.racerssetup.com download and install my racers app there. It will even have the astrum install I used to get it made. I do some thing I am told I do not need, but it works for me.

    Good Luck
    Dave Mason
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Thanks Dave, you're a star,

    Paul

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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    04/30/2010 09:06 AM 889,416 dotNetFx40_Full_setup.exe
    04/30/2010 09:06 AM 50,449,456 dotNetFx40_Full_x86_x64.exe
    05/28/2010 04:56 PM 5,073,240 vcredist_x86.exe
    1. Can someone please explain the difference between the first and second dotnet files above and which to install, are they for different OS versions?
    2. Should we expect the V11Runtime engine to run alone without the .net4 framework being installed (i.e before trying to open the App) or does the engine itself also require the the .net framework to be present?
    3. Can we normally expect that Windows 7 OS's are now shipped with the .net4 framework be preloaded?

    I'm trying to get a clearer picture of the requirements

    Thanks

    Michael

  8. #38
    Alpha Software Employee Lenny Forziati's Avatar
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Humby View Post
    1. Can someone please explain the difference between the first and second dotnet files above and which to install, are they for different OS versions?
    dotNetFx40_Full_x86_x64.exe is the full stand-alone installer for x86 and x64. It contains all the components that are required to deploy the .NET Framework 4.

    dotNetFx40_Full_setup.exe is a web bootstrapper installer. It downloads the required components from the Web during setup. Each package requires an Internet connection and detects, downloads, and installs required components and the language pack that matches the language of the user’s operating system.

    You can use either one and they will both work on all supported OSes. See .NET Framework Deployment Guide for Developers for complete details.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Humby View Post
    2. Should we expect the V11Runtime engine to run alone without the .net4 framework being installed (i.e before trying to open the App) or does the engine itself also require the the .net framework to be present?
    The .Net Framework is required to run V11, so it must be installed first.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Humby View Post
    3. Can we normally expect that Windows 7 OS's are now shipped with the .net4 framework be preloaded?
    No. Windows 7 ships with the 3.5 framework. Vista and 2008 ship with 3.0.

    Lenny Forziati
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Lenny,

    Thanks, a lot clearer now, we have now managed to get the V11Runtime running on our test XP PC. We had WindowsXP service pack 2 loaded and this threw up errors on the various installs, we have now switched to Windows XP Servicepack3 and this allows all the various installs OK, V11Runtime runs smoothly.

    Thanks again
    Michael
    www.instantnurserymanager.co.uk

  10. #40
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Thanks Dave, you're a star

    Make sure it all works first please and remember, I learned it from other folks on here and not alone.
    Dave Mason
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    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Michael, Paul, could we have a time out?

    Selwyn. If I understand your comments - and Happy Thanksgiving and all that.
    1) Building and deploying an application using the Install Maker will only deploy the Alpha Engine and Application Files. It does not, and will not deploy the .Net framework.
    2) Installing the Alpha RunTime engine will request .Net installation as well.
    3) Running the Install Maker is significantly different in V9 and V10/V11.
    So, if one needs to install a "packaged item" as with V9, this is not possible in V10 or V11 using the Install maker alone?
    The Wiki does not make it clear that V10/V11 actually requires deployment intervention and additional software (.Net).
    Is there any way that the Install Maker could prompt for .Net4?
    Ted Giles
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  12. #42
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    If you build your own installer using the InstallMaker that comes with a5, it will only install a5 runtime files. It does NOT install .net files, or the c++ runtime files.
    You will need to ensure that these files are on the machine before running your a5 install. The install files for .net and c++ runtime files come from microsoft and are freely distributable.
    Makes the a5 installer package of very little use. Hmm... , at one point I was kicking myself for buying a really good installer(not really). The a5 installer does a good job..kinda, but does not install things and it is kinda hard to install stuff from alpha if you can't start it.

    Can someone make a small installer file with c++, vb, vba or something that will install these apps that are needed?
    Dave Mason
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    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Spot on Dave, even a bit of information in the Preferred Help - as in the Wiki -would be better than nothing.
    Ted Giles
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    "Certified" Alphaholic Ray in Capetown's Avatar
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Hi Dave
    Thanks for your explanation - installing multiple times is essential to you for reselling your app.
    For additional assistance with what you do, some questions...
    Quote Originally Posted by DaveM View Post
    ...I install the runtime and all files in a folder on the c:\ drive.
    I put the application in a folder under the runtime.isn't the application A5 runtime?
    delete any non needed files.
    I make sure all this is working as planned before proceeding.
    make a link to the app on your desktop that works as you want. I make my own .exe, How ? do you rename A5 runtime, or use a compiler?

  15. #45
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Well, I just learned some new stuff(to me) from astrum - see below.

    I left instructions in the code archive a long time ago how I make my startup .exe. Others had some other ideas they left there for me as well. You can copy a link from the desktop into the install and have it put on the recieving computer's desktop. Alpha5.exe is renamed to alda.exe in my apps.

    I have been using astrum to install:
    before the app is installed:
    .net and c++ runtimes
    then
    copy the runtime and app to a folder
    (runtime is a copy of my install) I do not install from the alpha runtime .exe. I have eliminated most of the nonessential files before entering them in the astrum installer.
    then
    create needed links on the desktop and other.
    register dll's through astrum

    I invite all to download the application at www.racerssetup.com to see how this works. One bit of being careful: the registry files could get changed a bit. Stuff like changing how autoexec is used and being able to use shift+ctrl on start. Anything you see I could do better would be appreciated too.

    -----------------------------

    What I learned at astrum: You can make an install and then include the install in another install. I will play with that for a bit, but the main install would put the second install on disk, install runtime(if you want-i dont), install .net, install c++, Then run the second install for the application and runtime as I do it, then register the dlls.

    It would be better if the installer from alpha could handle these things for the user. That is only my humble opinion.
    Dave Mason
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Dave,

    Using Astrum, have you found a way for the install to detect if .Net4 is already installed and then skip the process the if it already exists? Very few of our customers that download our apps are experienced PC users and the decisions to make can be confusing for them. We load between 10 and 30 of our apps each week so have held back on installing later builds of V10 and V11 that require .net4

    Michael
    Last edited by Michael Humby; 11-27-2011 at 05:30 AM.

  17. #47
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    To the best of my knowledge, v10 & .5 do not need .net in the runtime.

    I have not found a way to accurately detect net4 as yet. Once .net starts, it prompts the user to quit, repair or reinstall the .net. I try to instruct the users to quit if they see that prompt.

    I am working on this and hope someone more knowledgeable will jump in. I think there should be a variable out there(in the system) that would tell us if it is installed. Older versions of astrum only checked to .net3.5 and now it does detect 4.0. I am just not yet aware of how. I am going to post this question on their message board.

    edit: I found it.
    create a variable called <net40is> and define it for 40000
    under the .net file in interactive and shell, choose to run it on exit, and conditions <.NETVersion> not equal to <net40is>
    it will not run if .net4 exists on my machine. I have not tested on a clean machine yet to make sure it happens.

    Now I need to work on the c++ thing.
    Last edited by DaveM; 11-26-2011 at 07:38 PM.
    Dave Mason
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  18. #48
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    somebody didn't read Selwyn's reply
    try re-reading it

    it tells you that if you install v11 with alpha's install execs, dot net will be auto installed, along with whatever else is required

    the simple installer you are trying to get to work was written several years ago, and does not currently create what you need if Alpha V11 has not already been installed.

    if you want to make an install exec, you will need to use a 3rd party, or else create a way to auto install dot net and other required dll's, etc.
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Martin,

    That is kinda what we are talking about. We kinda switched off to astrum installer as Selwyn spoke of using an outside installer. Alpha's does not always do what is needed by all people. It is nice to have something that does, but it does take a little learning to use in the way we sometimes need.

    Note that there are other installers available other than astrum.

    Back to astrum and alpha runtime. It seems I read somewhere that the install will take line commands. Does anyone know if you can install runtime to a specific place and do it in a quite manner so as to not be seen? In other words, so the user has no reason(cannot) intervene?
    Dave Mason
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Just a FYI : Astrum has a setting which will check for a minimal version of dotnet (Several choices)---if it is present it will skip whatever the action you create for it (use website, install file, etc). Along with this you can utilize Alpha's dotnet web installer with Astrum instead of including the dotnet large file with a runtime if wanted.....or even have Astrum just go to any website I believe. Older versions of Astrum do not have this feature however. And dotnet 4.0 was required for an install I created for v10.5 .
    Mike
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  21. #51
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Mike,

    Were you using something odd in the app that cause it to access .net? Mine are usually pretty plain Jane apps. There are few of the newer setups in them.

    Anyway, based on what you just said, I am going to include the .net as I already do. I had figured that on moving an app to v11, I would need it anyway.

    Some of my installs do not go on computers with web access. I pretty much have to install from the big file. I think there are 2 .net 40 installs. One is client and the other is the full. May be wrong, but I don't think it matters which is on the puter for alpha. Can you verify that? I have posed questions in astrum forum and hope to get an answer in a few days that may clarify some of this.
    Dave Mason
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Dave,

    edit: I found it.
    create a variable called <net40is> and define it for 40000
    under the .net file in interactive and shell, choose to run it on exit, and conditions <.NETVersion> not equal to <net40is>
    it will not run if .net4 exists on my machine. I have not tested on a clean machine yet to make sure it happens.
    I don't think this variable route will work since .net4 must already exist anyway before you can actually run the Runtime of later builds of V10.5 and V11. So the only solution is via the the third party installer and maybe this thread should switch to the Astrum message board if we want to create a seamless install without user intervention that skips the .net4 install if it is already present.

    Michael

    (Sorry Dave, have re-read your post, I thought you meant create the variable within Alpha, I see now you mean Astrum)
    Last edited by Michael Humby; 11-27-2011 at 10:04 AM. Reason: forgot an important line

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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Dave....nothing odd...the runtime just would not function without .NET is all.

    The client is most likely all that is required by Alpha--just going by the fact that when you use the .NET exe that Alpha provides, it goes to MicroSoft and downloads a much smaller version of .NET than the full one is. I use Alpha's exe (link) in Astrum as that way the installation file is much less in size.
    Mike
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  24. #54
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    From one of the astrum people for checking c++. I have not tried it yet, maybe tomorrow.

    Variable name: <VisualCpp2010RuntimeExists>
    Default value: 0
    Variable type: Number
    Get variable from: Registry
    Root key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
    Path: SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\{5D9ED403-94DE-3BA0-B1D6-71F4BDA412E6}
    Dave Mason
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    I found this thread to be very interesting and slightly disappointing. Here are a few of my thoughts.

    I guess my first question would be, “How hard is it to install an application developed in Microsoft Access or Filemaker?” Do they provide an install maker? From Alpha’s perspective, I’m sure it’s a lot more fun developing WEB and desktop features than an install program.

    That said, as developers, why do we need to keep re-inventing the wheel each of us trying to figure out a bullet proof scheme just to deploy our application built with Alpha’s product. Alpha knows exactly what needs to be installed and registered, what needs to be run with XP, Vista and Windows 7. It seems to me that Alpha would benefit greatly by making a robust enough install maker that developers could use to deploy applications built on Alpha’s Software. Why should I have to purchase someone else’s software, spend hours learning how to use it, spend more hours of trial and error to get the install to run right after spending more time searching this board to try and determine why my installation keeps on failing? Alpha has all the answers, yet I have not found a single source outlining the steps to be taken for a successful installation. This thread has overturned some rocks for me.

    I’ve personally have not had very good luck creating an install application. As a result, I have a number of applications that I could freely distribute, but I only distribute them locally as there is always a problem that shows up during the installation. Either the shortcut builder in alpha’s installer fails or something needs to be registered or who knows what else. It’s never anything that isn’t that big to fix as long as I am there. I truly wish that I could create a CD that I could hand out to whomever, and they could run the CD to either install my application or to reinstall my application after a system crash.

    I think Alpha is missing the boat on this one. I would definitely benefit from a true application installer from Alpha. I want calls from my customers about using my application. Not how to install my application or there is no shortcut. And I don’t want them going to the control panel to use the shortcut builder tool which is what I end up doing all the time. If I benefit from having a true installer, then Alpha benefits as I will sell more of our product.

    I haven’t even mentioned the shadowed database installation. I’ve built the boot install as Alpha recommends. It’s a lot of work to get it to work right.

    Again, my complaint is for the unassisted installation. When I can walk into an office and do a hands on install, I can always make it work. Although even here I spend more time than would be required with a good installation tool.

    And from Alpha, I’m not looking for something necessarily free. If I need to buy Astrum, why can’t I by Alpha’s Super Install Tool? Actually, after reading what I have just written, I realize that what I’m asking for is strictly a desktop application feature.

    Ron

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    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Ron, I empathise, but fortunately I haven't had as many issues with V7,8,9 Runtime installs.
    Until recently, V9 would install almost anywhere. The only issue recently was that the server did not have permissions set and shared access was blocked.
    I always test the builds on my own kit, and Win7 has given me a few headaches, but I've overcome those and along with the other contributors on the Forum, we seem to have the problem licked with V9.
    V10 and V11 are different animals as they need .net 3 or .net4, and as the host platform is unknown, there are a few more steps required for unattended installation.
    Alpha has however missed a trick on this one, as a number of the new users on the Forum are really expecting to develop apps. without any programming skills - and to deploy them as easily.
    Alpha was always advertised as a product which didn't require programming skills, and I fight really hard - as evidenced by my silly coding questions from time to time - to stay with that objective.
    Fortunately I have a few grey hairs in the IT world, so I can either get around an install problem, or am able to get advice and a workaround, so I haven't failed entirely yet.
    I do think that the advent of .net and Win7 coupled with a new and very powerful version of Alpha (which I cannot actually afford at the moment) there are, as a nice lady in Mexico said to me when confronted with a huge shower and bath she couldn't get to work; "too many moving parts!". I know what she meant now.
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  27. #57
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Let's simplify this(my opinion):

    if you send a cd to someone, you need a file on the cd to make it run(autorun.inf).
    You can install the alpha runtime which will give the option to install c++ runtime and the .net. Simple? Problem is, it installs wherever the user says or maybe where I do not want it.
    That same file(autorun.inf) can be used to install your prebuilt runtime app as alpha built it.

    This is similar to many installs. It does NOT satisfy what I want. I do hand out a cd that works on anything from 2000 to win 7 and it does not work like above. Mine works even when there is no internet available. That is a must for me. It does have an autorun.inf that simply starts whatever .exe I want run. Like this:
    [autorun]
    open=racecar.exe
    icon=RaceCar.ico

    Read bootstrap real careful in the wiki or wherever you find it. On a server system has 2 seperate installs, one for server and one for work station. The server is simply put the data stuff there. The workstation installs and when you start the adb, it runs the ae and does a few other things and then prompts the user for the shared folder on the server. once done, the shadow operation is run. That overwrites the boot adb of the same name.

    Now lets go to any other applications out there(vb - c# - C++). I do not know of any that do a great job of making an installer:
    You have to either write your own or use something like astrum.

    I am not inclined to purchase of v11 yet either. In the future!

    You could go to Ideascale and vote for this:
    Desktop - Alpha Installer - .net and c++
    http://alphasoftware.ideascale.com/a...nFilter=active

    I put it in a few days ago and it is under the hot heading at this time. I hate the ideascale idea and the use of it, but it is all we have for a wishlist.


    My simple bootstrap on the workstation download of my app:

    Code:
    dim master_db_name as C
    dim shadow_db_name as C
    master_db_name = "\\path\ups55\sales.adb"
    shadow_db_name = "c:\ups55\sales.adb"
     
    ui_modeless_dlg_box("Install Ups55",<<%dlg%
    {can_exit=exit}
    {lf};
    Specify the path and filename of the master copy of the applicationlike: \\pc2\ups55\sales.adb ;
    [%P=ui_get_file("Select file","(*.adb)",master_db_name)%.100master_db_name];
    {lf};
    <Click Here to Start Install!oK?.not.(master_db_name="")> <Cancel!cancel>;
    %dlg%,<<%code%
     
    if a_dlg_button = "cancel" then 
        ui_modeless_dlg_close("Install UPS55")
        a_dlg_button = ""
    end if
     
    if a_dlg_button = "oK" then 
        if file.exists(master_db_name) = .f. then 
            ui_msg_box("Error","Master Database not found.")
        else
            shadow_db_name = a5.Get_Name()
            a5.Load(master_db_name)
            a5_nopt_CopyAddFiles(shadow_db_name, master_db_name)
            create_shadow(shadow_db_name, master_db_name,.t.)
            ui_modeless_dlg_close("Install Ups55")
        end if 
    end if 
    %code%)
    This was originally in v7 and it still works today.
    Last edited by DaveM; 11-29-2011 at 07:56 PM.
    Dave Mason
    dave@aldausa.com
    Skype is dave.mason46

  28. #58
    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
    Real Name
    Ted Giles
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    For clarification Dave.
    Do you install a Runtime separately from the App?
    I'm not clear about getting .net on the machine. Does it come bundled with the RT package?
    Ted Giles
    Example Consulting - UK
    .

    http://ec12.example-software.com//
    See our site for Alpha Support, Conversion and Upgrade.

  29. #59
    "Certified" Alphaholic
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    Michael Humby
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Ted

    The Runtime exe does install .net if you run it, what we would like to know is if the Runtime exe checks if the .net 4.0 is already installed and then skip the installation if it is. If so how does Alpha detect it?

    Michael

  30. #60
    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Ted Giles
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    Default Re: Frustration and more frustration trying to install a V11 desktop app on another P

    Mornin' Mike.
    Ron Cooper had the same problem when he was installing his Butchers app.
    In his first attempt, he tried to reinstall .net - already on the PC - and it blew up in his face.
    Second attempt, I advised thet he could ignore the message which warns that .net is required, and it went straight in.
    Once Alpha is running, it's possible to check an see if specific files are present. As you know, it won't work if .net ain't there.

    So, going back to my 1986 Dos manual - doubt MSdos has changed much - there is a [FINDFILE] feature which you could run as a separate batch file and display a message until someone at Alpha adds the feature - which I suspect will be pretty soon.
    Try Command Prompt and enter Help in the panel.
    Ted Giles
    Example Consulting - UK
    .

    http://ec12.example-software.com//
    See our site for Alpha Support, Conversion and Upgrade.

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