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What's Wrong With Setup.exe?


Not going to touch this debate, but I do want to respond to one early comment:

Undeniably, the simplest possible interface for installing a downloadable app would be a web page with a button saying “Download and install ThisApp” which–when clicked–would handle the entire download and install process.

This process does exist. It’s called ClickOnce. Not only is the install process literally just one click, the update process can be zero-click if you set it up that way.

Admittedly, this isn’t as effective if you’re not working in a controlled environment like an office. There are more clicks trying to do this from a remote, untrusted site. But it really is an immense improvement on setup.exe, and further blurs the line between one-click desktop installs and no-click web installs.


You know, it’s really funny to see all this Windows vs Mac debate, when, in the field of package management, Linux distributions (yes, even Slackware source + checkinstall) has been kicking their a**es for years now.

Netpkg is the best, by the way. Nobody wants to type “apt-get install foo” when you can type “netpkg foo”. Portage is nice, if you run a Cell processor. Never used BSD, so can’t comment on ports.


I know I’m coming pretty late but… the winamp installer is the perfect one, 0 thinking required to install it and 0 thinking required to clean up the mess most of “modern” installers do instead of asking
unfortunately I have to deal with multiple user accounts on machine setup and you know what is the worst? getting asked every time what is that dumb icon on the desktop
hey, i don’t know, I never asked it to create desktop icon, not to mention common one, but I live with desktop icons disabled so I have no way of knowing another uncivilized person made a mess of everything without asking any questions!
and don’t forget that before win8 installers were free to change associations, imagine the confusion happening if installer didn’t ask… or even worse, changed associations globally, not per user (sometimes it did happen too)
seriously, we need the control to prevent spreading chaos and diseases (like chrome)