As the Windows 10 adoption rate continues to grow, developers are looking for simple ways to package their apps for the Windows Store.  In today’s competitive market, developers must deliver software faster while keeping costs down so they don’t have the luxury of rewriting their code base.  Caphyon solves the problem with Advanced Installer.  Now developers can package their existing Win32 and .NET desktop apps and games in the modern AppX format which can be published inside the Windows Store with minimal changes or no changes to their original code.

“Advanced Installer is the most powerful and easy-to-use Windows Installer authoring tool for MSI, AppX and App-V,” said Bogdan Mitrache, product manager at Caphyon.  “Rewriting an entire codebase is not something most ISVs can afford to do.  The costs and time required to do that could be fatal for some companies.”

Advanced Installer is a Windows Installer authoring tool which helps developers install, update, and configure their products safely, securely and reliably. Using Advanced Installer, software teams can save substantial amounts of money in development costs while increasing customer satisfaction and reducing support costs.

Caphyon is a Microsoft Visual Studio Industry Partner (VSIP) that has attracted more than 200,000 Advanced Installer users. The company has been providing elegant and easy to build installer products to Windows developers since 2004.

Convert Apps for Free
The Desktop Bridge converter built by the Advanced Installer team from Caphyon is a free tool based on Microsoft’s Desktop Bridge technology. With it, developers can convert old installers such as MSI and EXE to the modern AppX format.  This free converter from the Advanced Installer team is similar to the Desktop App Converter from Microsoft, although it includes additional features such as a GUI, integration with Hyper-V and VMware virtual machines, and smart processing of installer resources including file type associations and firewall rules. This helps developers speed up the conversion and evaluation process for their applications.

“The Desktop Bridge Converter from Caphyon makes the conversion process smother and faster, compared to the command-line tools offered by Microsoft,” said Mitrache.  “It can convert any installer regardless of the install UI level, unlike the Microsoft converter which can only convert applications that install silently.  This gives developers the flexibility to customize and debug their old installers, which is important because some installers fail to convert correctly due to legacy configurations.”

Using the latest version of Advanced Installer, developers can import or package a Windows 10 AppX package and obtain a project to maintain and improve with the entire team. They can also build and debug Universal Windows Platform (UWP) and Microsoft Installer (MSI) packages directly in Visual Studio, from 2017 all the way back to 2012 edition, using Advanced Installer’s extension for VS.  

In addition, developers can build UWP and Windows Server Apps packages (WSA) from existing MSI projects.  Alternatively, they can build UWP packages from scratch for full UWP apps.

Simplify Development and Debugging
With Microsoft’s help, Caphyon built a Visual Studio extension that allows developers to import any AppX package into their existing Visual Studio solutions as a new project.  That way, they can continue to debug and build new projects just like they do with their current ones.

“The extension provides full support for MSBuild integration, along with other continuous integration systems,” said Mitrache.  “It makes build system management a no-brainer.”

The Visual Studio integration is worth noting because Advanced Installer can package and debug apps in AppX format regardless of whether a developer is using Visual Studio 2015 or Visual Studio 2017.  By comparison, the single other alternative, provided by Microsoft, can only do that if developers are using Visual Studio 2017.

Save Time and Money
Advanced Installer is completely GUI-driven so there are no scripts to learn, no databases to edit, and no XML to write.  It includes hundreds of powerful features that are ready to use in a few mouse clicks.  Businesses of all sizes are saving hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars by taking advantage of the expert knowledge built into Advanced Installer.

Advanced Installer also enables developers to reduce the number of incidents that arise from improper installers, which helps minimize support costs and increase conversion rates for new users.  If support is necessary, Advanced Installer’s highly responsive support team is available to answer questions developers have.

“Developers appreciate the support we provide.  In fact, it’s one of our key selling points,” said Mitrache.

Developers using Advanced Installer save money on tools since the product includes an updater, a java launcher, a bootstrapper, trialware, serial validation, a WYSIWYG dialog editor, and more.  Migrating from other tools is also very easy because Advanced Installer allows developers to repackage older installers, import MSIs, and import Windows Installer XML (WIX) or Visual Studio Setup projects.

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