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Download Windows Installer 4.5, the application installation and configuration service for Windows, from Microsoft. Version 4.5 is primarily meant for Windows Vista and it also supports Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2008. This version introduces several new features.
We had earlier posted about the popular windows Installer 3.1. Microsoft introduced version 4.0 for windows vista and then went on to release Windows Installer 4.5 as a minor update to it. Though Windows Installer 4.5 is a minor release to version 4.0, it fully supports all packages and updates meant for Windows Installer 4.0, Windows Installer 3.x and Windows Installer 2.0.
Features of Windows Installer 4.5
The following are some of the new features introduced in Windows Installer 4.5
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- Multiple package transaction – This new feature basically supports installation of multiple MSI packages in a single transaction. The advantage of installing multiple packages in a single transaction is the installation of all such packages will be complete only when they can all be installed successfully. If there is any failure in installing one or more packages included in the same transaction, the installer will rollback the entire installation. “MsiBeginTransaction” and “MsiEndTransaction” are APIs that facilitate this “Multiple package transaction”.
- Embedded UI handler – This new feature provides support for embedding a custom user interface (UI) handler in the Windows Installer package. The need for such an embedded UI arises because the internal UI bundled within the windows installer is not flexible to handle complex setup scenarios. Software developers can achieve this by creating a separate DLL that exports the “InitializeEmbeddedUI”, “EmbeddedUIHandler” and “ShutdownEmbeddedUI” functions and then using “MsiSetExternalUI” to initialize and use the embedded custom UI. It is thus not only easy to integrate a Custom UI, but it can also be easily invoked from the “Add or Remove Programs” item in Control Panel or during a repair process by the Windows Installer.
- Embedded chainer – This release not only facilitates installation of multiple MSI packages as a single transaction but it also provides an embedded chainer to add MSI packages to a multi-package transaction i.e. it can be used to enable install, repair and uninstall events across multiple chained MSI packages.
- Update supersedence resiliency – This feature allows making changes in the “FeatureComponent” table during supersedence.
- Shared component patching resiliency during uninstall – If a component is shared by multiple software products, this feature introduced in version 4.5 ensures that the most recent version of the shared component is available to all products.
- Custom action execution on update uninstall – This feature makes it easy for a software update to add a new custom action or change the custom action in such a way that this custom action is triggered when the update is uninstalled.
Free download Windows Installer 4.5 from here – Windows Installer for Vista and XP. Click the appropriate file you want to download from the list on that page.To start the installation immediately, click Run.To save the download to your computer for installation at a later time, click Save. You can then install it at a later time.