Create an EXE or Setup File in .NET Windows Application


Hi .NET Architects!

Visual Studio Setup and deployment Projects provides to make an executable or installer file in .NET windows application is easy and rapidly.

Visual Studio provides templates for four types of deployment projects: Merge Module Project, Setup Project, Web Setup Project, and Cab Project. In addition, a Setup wizard is provided to help step you through the process of creating deployment projects. You can see the templates and the wizard in the New Project dialog box under the Setup and Deployment Projects node.

The following are guidelines for choosing the right type of deployment project for your project.

1)Merge Module Project : Packages components that might be shared by multiple applications.

2)Setup Project : Builds an installer for a Windows-based application.

3)Web Setup Project : Builds an installer for a Web application.

4)Cab Project : Creates a cabinet file for downloading to a legacy Web browser.

5)Smart Device Cab Project : Creates a Cab project to deploy device applications.

This topic demonstrates deployment using a Setup and Deployment Project.

Setup Projects

Setup projects allow you to create installers in order to distribute an application. The resulting Windows Installer (.msi) file contains the application, any dependent files, information about the application such as registry entries, and instructions for installation. When the .msi file is distributed and run on another computer, you can be assured that everything necessary for installation is included; if for any reason the installation fails (for example, the target computer does not have the required operating system version), the installation will be rolled back and the computer returned to its pre installation state.

I. Create Setup Project

The following steps will gives the elegant guidance to create an executable or installer file.

1. Go to file menu > click Add > new project >now “Add New Project” dialog will appear.

2. Select the “Other Project Types” and click “Setup and Deployment” projects,Choose “Setup Project” give name project name in name text box finally click OK.

3. New project appear in solution explorer,for eg., you have give the name “MyEXE” file will be displays with given name.

4.Right click the MyEXE > go View > click “File System”

5.You can see the “File System on TargetMachine”under  three folders
Application Folder
User’s Desktop
User’s Program Menu

6.Select Application Folder and right click Add>Project Output>select Primary output

7. Select User’s Desktop right click on the right side pane>click create new shortcut>select output file from Application folder>change the file name from  primary output name to MyEXE

Next >>

Same procedure follows the user’s program menu also

8.If you want to change the Manufactures name, just right click the project go to properties

Change the properties as per you requirement

9.Finally Build the new project

11. Select the Release folder for build. (Select ‘Properties’ in right click of Setup Project)

Setup Project Release Folder

12. Set the Compression Mode

Mode 1: Optimization for speed (Installation Speed)

Mode 2: Optimization for size (Setup file size)

Compression Mode

13. Once successfully build the setup. Please look up in  inside Release folder

Release Folder

When you want to install  the setup file or exe file on the client machine, before you should be installed .NET Framework on that machine because, Applications and controls written for the .NET Framework v2.0 requires the .NET Framework Redistributable Package version 2.0 to be installed on the computer where the application or control runs. (Framework 4.0 need .NET Framework 4 Client Profile).

#1 .NET Framework 2.0 Redistributable Package Downlaod

#2 .NET Framework 4 Client Profile Downlaod

II. Create shortcut icon  in User’s Desktop, User’s Programs Menu and Add/Remove Programs

Note: System support only .ico file format

a. User’s Desktop

Step 1: Add an icon file (.ico) in project

Add icon file in setup project

Step2: Select the icon file

Select the icon file in open dialog window

Stpe3: Icon file added in Application Folder

iconf file added

Step4: Select ‘User’s Desktop’ or ‘User’s Program Menu’  and right click on right side pane

Create short cut on user's desktop

Step5: Add primary output of actual application and click ‘OK’ to select

Step6: Rename the actual name to your desired project/product name

Step7: Here the sample product name is ‘Your Product Name’ for demo purpose

Step8: If we want to add icon on shortcut, Click Properties Window

Step 9: Select Icon, next Browse icon file

Step10: Browse icon file in Application Folder

Step 11: Click  ‘Application Folder’

Step 12: Add File button will be enable once you have clicked the Application Folder

Add File

Step 13: Select your product icon and Click ‘OK’

File Added

b. User’s Programs Menu

Kindly follow the same steps for shortcut added in User’s Program Menu.

C. Add/Remove Programs Icon

If you want to add your icon in Control Panel > Programs >Uninstall, You need to follow the below steps.

Add icon in AddRemove Programs

Step 1: Select the setup project in Solution Explorer and right click, select the ‘properties’

Select  icon in AddRemove Programs

Add the icon from Application Folder.

View Icons

Install your setup in target machine, You can view the shortcuts in Desktop, Start Menu and Uninstall Programs.

Figure 1: Shortcut icon in Desktop

Desktop Icon

Figure 2: Shortcut icon in User’s Program Menu

Start menu Icon

Figure 3: Shortcut icon in Uninstall Programs

Icon in Uninstall Programs

III. Add Prerequisites

Prerequisites are provide support resources to run the installed process on your target machine.

Visual Setup and Deployment projects are automatically detect the required prerequisites need to install the system. But the question is what is the source for install the prerequisites?  No need to worry, Visual Studio IDE provides three options to install the prerequisites on your system.

  • Download prerequisites from component vendor’s website (default option)
  • Download prerequisites from the same location as my application
  • Download prerequisites from the following location

How to add prerequisites in Visual Studio?

1. Select Project in Solution Explorer, Right click

2. Click the Prerequisites button in Property Pages

3. Select the required prerequisites from the window

Click ‘Ok’, prerequisites will associate based on your install location selection.

IV. Setup file User Interface customization

If you want to customize the installation process screens. Visual Studio provides facility through ‘User Interface’.

Right click of setup project, Select View and Click ‘User Interface’.

Setup File User Interface

Here, you can see the hierarchy tree of installation process screens.

a. Add new dialog window

Step 1: Right click desired selection, Select ‘Add Dialog’

UI-Add Dialog

Step 2: Select the dialog which you wish to add

Select the dialog

Step 3: New dialog added

Dialog Added

b. Re-order the Screens

Right click of desired screen which you need to move the specific place and select ‘Move Up’ and ‘Move Down’

Dialog Move Up

c. Change the text and banner images

Right click  and select the ‘Properties Window ‘ where you need to edit the text and image.

Change the text and image

Once you’ve complete the changes and ‘Build’ the project again. Now, you setup file is professionally ready.

V. Prevent Multiple Instance Running.

How do avoid multiple instance in installed application?

In Program.cs file add the below code.
 static void Main()
{
Application.EnableVisualStyles();
Application.SetCompatibleTextRenderingDefault(false);
Process[] process = Process.GetProcessesByName(Application.ProductName); //Prevent multiple instance
if (process.Length > 1)
{
MessageBox.Show("{Application Name}  is already running. This instance will now close.", "{Application Name}",
MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Information);
Application.Exit();
}
else
{
Application.Run(new <Initial Form>());
}
}

Help me to improve better  by sharing your feedback here.

Thanks!

384 thoughts on “Create an EXE or Setup File in .NET Windows Application

  1. Hi
    Thanks. It helped me a lot.

    How can make my exe application to create a shortcut or icon on tray?

    Please help me

    Thanks
    Shobha

  2. Wanna some useful tips for gridview , I have bind the data but wanted some professional look and also some Images will display And address in taken from the database so how could i do this ..??

    For better Formates and looks of datagrid ..?

    Also wanted to know how to use Paging in DataTable
    if i bound tha data with DataTable control in asp .net page…..

  3. Dear sir,
    Thank you for the useful Information. Please tell me how can i create Setup file if my apllication contains Database file. I connected my database through Sql Server. Please help me. i also created dataset in my project.

    Thanking you,

  4. Hi,
    First of all thanks to the wonderful post.
    Got some doubts, How to include Microsoft SQL Server 2005 in this setup?? Also i need to include crystal reports also…

    Would be great if u help me out…

  5. hi…
    thanks for the article …

    I need some help…

    My project is with VS2005, SQL SERVER 2005.. and crystal report too..

    How can i add these into the setup files…

    a quick reply will avoid my trouble..

    I already developed the project … What should I do to install my application to the client machine which has only windows OS installed..

    this is my first project … please provide me a solution from the base…

    Thank you

    regards
    edwin

  6. Hello..
    First of all i want to say thank you for giving such a nice and step by step article.Now i can create EXE with the help of your article ,you made it very simple now.

    Thanking & Regards,
    Uzair Aziz

  7. Thanks. Thanks a lot.
    This article helps me to create setup file easily.
    And also i want this article, to create the setup file with register key. It wil be more helpful for me. Thank u.

    • HI mam.. Very to hear ..you got a solution for this.. Could you please send me the .EXE file which you have created..
      Mam, I had developed a Notepad application in VS2010.. Now i am going to develop .EXE file for Notepad application.. I am asking your project for to improve My knowledge based on creating files..
      thank you Mam

  8. Thanks. Thanks a lot.
    This article helps me to create setup file easily.
    And also i want this article, to create the setup file with register key. It wil be more helpful for me. Thank u.

  9. It was realy helpful for me…i am begineer inC# .NET so plss tell me how to change the icon created after installation……
    thanks & regards
    shrawan

  10. Hi
    Thanks for your document.
    I want to merge an exe file(it is a patch of crystal report) to my installation.
    When i add it as a file, it is not merged.
    Also i am having that mentioned problem, about sql server 2000
    Is it necessary to install client connectivity of sql server in client.
    I am using .net1.1
    Thanks

  11. hi

    thanx for you yr docs .it is gr8 .but i want to set application installation path

    how can i do it ???

    thnx in advance .

  12. hi,
    Thanks a lot my dear friend…

    and i have a doubut,how to add image(i.e icon) to our setup/exe ,it disply in desktop as notpad file.

    pls help me pa..

  13. @karthika
    you will have to add the ico file from the exe properties. find the property ico and add the ico from the windows path.

    question:
    how to add .net framework 2.0 with the installer ??????? i think here no one has answer…..
    Thanks

  14. hi,
    guys, when I create a setup file , Databae is not inbuild in it. I am looking any tell me me how database can inbuild within setup so I need not to paste it program directory and increase security of database.

  15. Please describe how to link database in this setup project
    with sqlserver 2005
    thank you
    where is place DB in folder project .?
    I add data base as Microsfot SQL SERVER DATABASE FILE

  16. Hi All,
    is there any way to create a setup for both web based abd windows application?
    For example I have a project created in VB in windows and 2 VB.NET in web projects. I want to create a setup project which will combine these 3 projects.
    Thank you in advance,
    Selami Ozlu.

  17. Hi,
    I am using visual studio 2003 C# ,I want to make setup for
    web application using SQL 2000 DB and crystal report what the step for setup and necessary files to install in client machine?
    Please help me.

  18. hai
    thank you very much
    it really helps me a lot
    am studying mca…and tomorrow is my review..
    you helped me a lot thank you friend…
    thanks,,,,

  19. Thank you for the useful Information. Please tell me how can i create Setup file if my apllication contains Database file. I connected my database through Sql Server 2005. Please help me

  20. hi…I already created the exe file but since my database is not included I can’t use the application…how can I include the db into the setup file??

  21. i can create the .exe and also i can setup it but i can not see the setuped program in my system ot other system it is being not working any setup as illustrated in yr site . please guide me how to work on it .

  22. If you ever want to see a reader’s feedback :) , I rate this post for four from five. Detailed info, but I have to go to that damn google to find the missed parts. Thank you, anyway!

  23. Nice, buddy. You have done a great job. I am doing my mca 6th semester trainings and i was searching for the answer which u have just narrated so efficiently.
    Thanks a lot.

  24. i have an app with a db..mdf included . i just did your steps. but when i run it ,it says

    “An attempt to attach an auto-named database for file C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\My Documents\Visual Studio 2008\aspnetdb.mdf failed. A database with the same name exists, or specified file cannot be Opened, or it is located on UNC share.”

    what i shou do??

    thanks you

    • hey did u find any solution for ur question? because i have also same error in my setup but can not find solution for it

  25. how to change connection string into EXE file when we installed exe onto client mechine i m using sqlserver2000 for database my project in Vs2005

    my project is completed please help as soon as possible
    how to change connnection string ?

    thanks
    neeraj

  26. try this string but with wql express, its not big deal

    Data Source=.\\SQLEXPRESS;AttachDbFilename=|DataDirectory|\\myDatabase.mdf;Integrated Security=True;User Instance=True

  27. Hello…

    When i install this newly created set.exe file, after installation application doesn’t start automatically. I have to start it manually. Is there any way to auto start the application after installation.

    Thanks,
    Priyanka

  28. hii, can u tell me which files are necessary to be attached alongwith the application, so that it runs on the client PC. my windows app has database files (.mdf). So which files should i attach and how..?
    pls help..!

  29. HI sir
    Really This Concept Is Enough To Build A Set UP File.,but Add one Good Example With is the Good Example.please attach one Example.

    • I got an error while running the exe and msi files.
      The error is ‘

      “the folder path ‘.’ contains an invalid character”..

      Please give me a solution as soon as possible.

  30. Hi, I found this blog post while looking for help with Microsoft Silverlight. I’ve recently changed internet browser from Chrome to Microsoft IE 6. Just recently I seem to have a problem with loading sites that have Microsoft Silverlight. Everytime I go on a site that needs Microsoft Silverlight, the page does not load and I get a “npctrl.dll” error. I can’t seem to find out how to fix the problem. Any help getting Microsoft Silverlight to work is very appreciated! Thanks

  31. Thank you very much..
    Really very good way of expressing..awesome

    Please let me know how can we add product key dialog and validate it and a customized splash screen at the startup.

    One thing not related with the same, but if anybody could help me with that please..

    I’ve .snk files..now how do I attach those files to my C# Windows App to change the skin or any other way to change the skin

    Thanks again..

  32. This is nice one……….. but can u tell me that how to make a setup of an application with including database files of sql server…………

  33. hai,
    this is very easy to implement.bt can u tell me that how to make a setup of an application with including database files of sql ………………………………………….

  34. Hi
    First of all thank you for this nice article.
    I just wanted to add .Net framework version3.5 along with my setup project.So, whenever I start the installation it needs to check the existance of .net framework3.5. It its not then needs to install the framework automatically by downloading from the site. Immediately after the framework installation needs to start the application installation. I have tried with prerequisites->download from the vendors site option. But there we need to install the framework manually by downloading from the MS site. Then need to start the setup again. But I need to do everything in one strech.
    Could you please help me out to solve this issue.
    Thanks in advance…..

  35. Hi,

    Thanks for this article, I have followed the steps instructed by you and created the .exe. I have installed the SQL server in windows server and restored the database, now I am trying to install the exe file in different clients, but I am surprised that the application after installation only gets connected with remote sql server from my system and one another system but I am not able to connect the app from more than 2 systems, if I tried even it does not load the app, it gives the null reference error at login page load….
    please help what could be the reason, I want a centralized database by which the several client can install my app and use the same database.

  36. Hi dear ,
    Thanks a lot that your information help me a lot.Also now i created the .exe file of my own devlope .net application.
    But could you tell me how to zip my database file with this exe file .I think it is possible but i don’t know how .

    • If you have using attached database then no issues to add the DB in to the exe and please make sure that you have given correct DB connectionString..

      Just add attached DB files from your Deployment Project solution explorer

  37. Hi,
    Thanks for the info.
    I have created and installed the exe successfully but when I try to open the application in the program files,there is no exe. It contains only the files which were in my project like .cs, designer.cs etc. Please tell me how can I see my exe running?

  38. Hi i need only EXE file to distribute to customer. I dont want the MSI file. So, how can i get the single EXE file ?

  39. i made a vb.net project and it run completely. but when i made its setup and install it on computer then it not work properly.
    plz tell me the solution of it.

  40. Hi,

    its a good way to create the exe. Other option is to create exe is New Projet –> Other Project Type –> Setup and Deployment

    a) Copy from existing project (bin –> Debug –> All Files Copy) and Copy in New Project (bin –> Debug Folder)

    b) We need a shortcut for desktop and program menu. First we can right click on Exe (Create a Shortcut) then we can drag in User Desktop and then User Program Menu

    c) After we can build the Application.

    Setup Create is Finish
    Vijay Kumar
    singh24bpl@gmail.com

  41. Hi !
    Help me out plz. I hav made project which is in VB. Also I hav made Setup of that proj. nw i want to install my proj on client m/c . I hav already added connection string in app.config file.And while installing it on client m/c it gives error that sql connection not etablished..I hav also changed the old connection string to new one.what should i do nw?

    Thanks

    • Hi, You should use remote connection string if the DB has located on some other place. Can you please show me your connection string? (rename the servername,login credentials for security purpose)

      Note: We should change the connection string based on environment.

  42. Hi,
    I am a student. I developed a web browser using ASP.NET with C# (in Visual Studio 2008). Where WebBrowser control has been used. It is being installed only those system, in which a version of .NET Framework is already installed.

    I would like to installed this one in any system. If system don’t have .NET Framework then the .exe file itself install the .NET Framework first and then install the related…

    Is the idea work?

    If yes, How? Please help me…
    If any other idea is there, please help me…..
    I am open get any sort of idea…

    Thanks

  43. Hi,
    I am a student. I developed a web browser using ASP.NET with C# (in Visual Studio 2008); Where ‘WebBrowser control’ is used. Now the browser is being installed only those system, in which a version of .NET Framework is already installed.

    I would like to installed this one in any system.

    If system don’t have .NET Framework then the .exe file itself install the .NET Framework first and then install the related…

    Is the idea work?

    If yes, How? Please help me…
    If any other idea is there, please suggest…..
    I am open, to get any sort of idea…

    Thanks

    • Sudip,

      If you have planned to creating a setup file for your application, You can include the .NET Framework as prerequisite components in that setup file.

      Or else, it will automatically detect the prerequisite and also it will redirect the .NET framework download page while installation.

      The system which is going to install your application should be contains .NE Framework while before installation.

  44. Hello Pls help Me ,

    I am create the Stock Project in Desktop Apllication, i have 5 Tables abd 20 Stored Procedure ,So when I make .exe file then i create Error As “Logined fail to abc/sqlexpress” In another Computer…I think We cannot Attach Tables So how We solve this problem ..We also make .mdf file but in this file cannot save the record in tables.

  45. sir, i’ve developed an application using vb.net…… but i am not able to add the code for shortcut on the desktop while it is being installed in any computer……

    plz help…..

  46. thank u brilliant but one doubt i’ve database connection in my vb.net application i follow ur steps but how to include my database in that exe file it showing error when i installed in client system

  47. I created the setup file for my project in c#.net. I installed this in another system. But i can do all the process in my project without Sql Server 2005. How can create setup file with Sql Server2005…

    Please Help Me…

    Thank You,
    Malar.

  48. I created the setup file for my project in c#.net. I installed this in another system. But i can’t do all the process in my project without Sql Server 2005. How can create setup file with Sql Server2005…

    Please Help Me…

    Thank You,
    Malar.

  49. Thanks a lot. It helped me.
    How to make setup that it can only be installed on one and only one computer. Pls help.

    Thanking you in appreciation

    Manoj

    • Using system’s machine id..

      Try this..
      after installation in main form/ splash screen load()
      * Get the machine id(mac id) from system.
      * Store the machine id in centralized/server db.
      * If the key already exists, alert the warning message to user and exit the application

  50. Respected Sir,

    Here by i have created a vb.net 2008 windows application and sql server 2000 as back end.
    now when i have deploy the application and try to run on other machine then the application doesnt run and connection error occurs . I have written connection coding as
    cn = New SqlConnection(“initial catalog=database name ; integrated security = true”)

    so when i install the setup on another pc then the login id and password form doesnt appear on the master page which has the property IsMdiContainer = true

    I have install sql server 2000 and .net frame work the same version which i have use on my pc . and more over I have created the same database which i was having on my pc. so now what to do in this case !!

    • After created Desktop/Program files short cuts..
      1. Right click of short cut
      2. Select ‘Properties’ window
      3. Browse the icon file
      4. Set the icon for setup
      But icon file should be extension of .ico

  51. Hi Balanagaraj,
    It was a good explanation. I am on my way in developing Outlook Plugin, and i followed all the things explained here to develop the setup. But, After the install when i started the Outlook, the plugin was not even found. I am also using Web Service along with this plugin, in such case do i want to follow any different steps to create the exe.

    Thanks in advance for ur ideas

  52. Hi,
    I have developed a vb.net application which uses an external device. I wanted to know if there is any way to create the setup so that the device installer is included in the setup and when we install the application on any PC, the device installer also gets installed automatically.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks and Regards,
    Neeta

  53. Hi guys
    you can add sql server2005 to ur projectbefore creating setup… to do so u have to keep ur database in bin folder and change ur connection string in Appconfig as

    test_db.mdf is ur sql database name which u kept in bin folder and after that add all this to ur “Application folder” and build ur project to create setup….

  54. add key=”ConnectKey” value=”Data Source=.\SQLExpress;Integrated Security=true; AttachDbFilename=|DataDirectory|\test_db.mdf;User Instance=true;”

  55. And also i request author of this artical to ensure is it a correct way , because it creates permission problems some times and i am not able to save records to my database file from my installed application

    Thanks & regards
    Alish

  56. Hi,
    I have created a Windows service and i followed the process to create installation set up for the same.

    i have generated a solution and converted into exe format, i need to refer this exe file (dependency file) in windows service and provide single installation set up. so wen i run the installation set up, first my windows service will get installed following it, the solution exe should get in!stalled automatically.

    Thanks!!

  57. thanks, it was really good. I will be very thankful to you if u guide me about the database?????? Is data base files are necessary if a system has not SQL server and visual stuudio then my project will work on that system or not.?

  58. I like this article , But i need you help how to attach database in setup project. and i also did that. it is working fine in my system but not in the others system. and that system not have sqlserver 2005, dotnet 3.5 etc.

    Thank you for your reply

  59. Dude thanks lot.. have made an EXE.. but kindly share that how to create a serial no for our EXE and all… i would like to create with MAC based EXE.. so pls..

    1nce agn thanks!

    • Try this..
      after installation in main form/ splash screen load()
      * Get the machine id(mac id) from system.
      * Store the machine id in centralized/server db.
      * If the key already exists, alert the warning message to user and exit the application

  60. how to change connection string into EXE file when we installed exe onto client mechine i m using sqlserver2005 for database my project in Vs2008

    my project is completed please help as soon as possible
    how to change connnection string ?

    thanks

    • After installation,
      1. You can find ‘applicationname.exe.config’ in installation folder(:\Program Files\Product).
      2. In that .config file, Change the connection string and save it.
      3. It will work fine because .config file is editable and no need to rebuild.

  61. hi…
    thanks for the article …

    I need some help…

    My project is with VS2005, SQL SERVER 2005.. and crystal report too..

    How can i add these into the setup files…

    a quick reply will avoid my trouble..

    I already developed the project … What should I do to install my application to the client machine which has only windows OS installed..

    this is my first project … please provide me a solution from the base…

    Thank you

    regards
    edwin

  62. hi…
    thanks for the article …

    I need some help…

    My project is with VS2008, SQL SERVER 2005.. and crystal report too..

    How can i add these into the setup files…

    a quick reply will avoid my trouble..

    I already developed the project … What should I do to install my application to the client machine which has only windows OS installed..

    this is my first project … please provide me a solution from the base…

    Thank you

    regards
    Rakesh Ramani

    • Hi, Setup project will automatically detects the project dependencies and it will include the dependencies from application project.

      # You can find the ‘Detected Dependencies’ tree view in your setup project. So this dependencies will place in client’s system when installed the setup.

  63. Great Tutorial! This helped me get rid of the error: C# App Install Error – Microsoft.visualstudio.hostingprocess.utilites.sync version 9.0.0.0 missing from Global Assembly Cache (GAC)

  64. Hi Guys

    Thanks very much for your constructive instruction on hwo
    to create seat up file.

    But i have one question more, what if my project have
    several reports and i want them to be see for print
    when i view them.

    So where can i put those report in Application folder, User
    desktop folder or ??

  65. hi,

    i want to know that how can i make setup of windows application in c# with database in sql server 2005 & setup must be run in any computer

  66. hi,

    i want to know that how to make setup in c# windows application with sql server 2005 & setup must be run in any computer without error

  67. Hi,

    I want to know the steps for making smart device cab project. I am encountering an error if i follow the above procedure.

    Error: Section [Version] key “Provider” requires valid data

    ERROR: The Windows CE CAB Wizard encountered an error.

    • Hi Sushant,
      .NET framework is a platform for all .NET applications. So .NET based applications require .NET framework for execution. You can use .NET Framework Redistribute package(free) for client machine installation. Without .NET support its not possible.

      Let me know if you have any other queries

  68. thanks a lot for such a valuable help in a elegant manner. i was searching for this solution from a long time and u porovide a very interesting way to create the detup …….. thanks .

  69. i hav developed a project in C# windows application and i converted tis application into EXE file.. And i hav called that EXE file from ASP.NET Web application. it works in client side.. but it doesn’t works on server side …no error too. it just loading 4 long time until we close…. i have tried many times no solution so fr.. help me for the solution as soon as possible.. here is my code in ASP.NET

    // CODE
    System.Diagnostics.ProcessStartInfo startInfo = new System.Diagnostics.ProcessStartInfo(Server.MapPath(“EXE\\aa.exe”));
    System.Diagnostics.Process pStart = new System.Diagnostics.Process();

    pStart.StartInfo = startInfo;
    pStart.StartInfo.RedirectStandardOutput = true;
    pStart.StartInfo.UseShellExecute = false;

    pStart.Start();
    pStart.WaitForExit();

    // CODE

    here aa is 1 kind of EXE file.. i need tis converted EXE file should be run on server side of ASP.NET web Application… idea plz

  70. Hi Balanagaraj,

    I am developing one Windows Application in C#.Net with MS Access Back end. In this application i am going to make Web setup project EXE file for using different systems in network. If i enter the data by using that EXE file in different systems means shall i get the all systems data into server system?

    Could you please let me know.

    Thanks in Advance.
    Naresh

      • Hi I have some similar issues, I am using Mysql database c#.net created windows application.
        Now i want to create 1 setup file .from which all required database files and crystal reports are automatically install and ready to use in 1 click setup. Please send me detail for that.

        Right now i can create setup but showing some error regarding to MySql, and form does not getting data from database when i install application to client computer. I think error is because of it cant find database or server or connector issue.. please let me know ASAP regarding that.

      • Hi, Can you please clarify my question?
        Are you going to embed MySQL DB with application and distribute to all clients OR Using centralized DB and All clients will connect your centralized DB?

  71. thanx alot dear,this is very impressive and simple solution that you have explianed by screen shots,its helped me alot

  72. Thanks a lot for your generous to posted this great tutorial. And also I want to say thanks for anybody who submitted the comments. I found the way to install the application without any SQL Server things. It runs smoothly on my client computers. Two thumbs up for this ^_^

  73. Thank U !

    This is very Perfect. This is very simple way to convert the exe file. who he/she is the write this post, lot of thanks……….., (WITH LOVE) by THANGARAJ

  74. Hi Balanagaraj,
    It was a good article. Thanks.

    I need some help..
    I develop my .exe file with vs.net 2008 & windows xp pro. I can run my .exe file in my computer successfully but not in other OS. Is it any other way that I can run my .exe file in various OS(such as windows 7) without running setup.exe? just the application will do?

    • Hi,

      Did you add “Prerequisites” in to your setup file. Please see III. Add Prerequisites.
      The following prerequisites need to install
      1. .NET Framework, 2. MSI Installer
      Also, .net setup file will run all OS versions in windows family (above Windows98)

      Please check ‘other systems have installed with these prerequisites’ or not?

  75. Sir, I was successfully create the MYEXE file. it is run on only my computer. but does not run on other computer..

    Please Help………………………,
    How to solve this problem……….,

  76. say me how to create a activation key for the setup file.. the installed application should expire within some specified time and it should ask for the key to activate it and use forever…

    so that i can sell the application to others for money.. they can use it for some days and if they like it and want to use it forever means i can get the money and give the key…

    send the info to my mail

  77. hey thanks a lot
    but when i right click on the application folder(6th step) and click on add project output I can’t find primary output in the list………..
    plz help me out as soon as possible

    thanks…………..

  78. hey thanks a lot
    i use visual studio 2010 ultimate version
    but when i right click on the application folder(6th step) and click on add project output I can’t find primary output in the list………..
    plz help me out as soon as possible

    thanks…………..

    • Hi,

      Thanks for your inputs.
      Did you build the application? if yes.. it will be create a primary output file.
      If you add ‘Project Output’ from right click of Application Folder (Follow the steps #6) it will add automatically.

      Please re do the steps correctly and get back to me.

  79. thanks for the reply.

    I have done the steps many times but it doesn’t show the “primary output” in the list…..
    Can you please tell me how you build the application………

    again thanks

  80. Can you please answer the Question that “How Frame work and the applications Setup one click ” instead of going venders website or install seperately. i have noticed that so many pepole asked that question but you are not answered it.. i too have that doubt , i need to create a package which should install framework first then the application, i dont want to go the venders website and nor want to install seperately, when the user click the setup it should install framework if not installed and then the application.

    please answer ..

    thanks
    Edward

    • Hi,

      I’ve propose a solution for your needs.

      1. Create a centralized database for registration management
      2. In your windows application, Splash screen or MDI form load, Verifying the following logic.
      # After Installation, get MacID or Machine identification number from Client system and Store your centralized database.
      # Calculate start date and expiry date (Start date + 10 or 20) and update the flag IsExpire = true
      # Verify the MacId and Corresponding IsExpire field
      # If yes show the expiry message window
      # Else, allow used to proceed
      Please let me know your comments.

  81. Thanks.. But this is not working with the application including SQL database.. How can I deploy a project with SQL database, so that i can install and run my project in other system..

  82. i have one third-party exe file i want to attach in my setup.. i am attaching but when i am installing third-party tool only installing. my application is not installing.. how to install both things..

    please help me

    Thanks in Advance.
    Bheema Sekhar

    • hi bheema when ever you create setup your project than

      you need:-
      1>download .net framework
      2>.net framework 3.1 or any version than install it third party pc
      3> than install your project
      4>your software run on third party pc

  83. example will be gorgeous if you show how to include a data base in it
    so now my problem is

    framework 3.5 visualstudio
    sqlserver 2005
    setup build including sql file .mdf
    after installation on execution
    error is
    you are attempting to open a file of type’sql server datbase Primary data file (.mdf)’
    these files are used by operating system and by various programs.Editing and modifying them could damage your system.
    if you still want to open the file click open with otherwise click cancel

    please resolve as soon as possible
    umeshsinghgarg@yahoo.co.in

  84. Pingback: Create an EXE or Setup File in .NET Windows Application « Sochinda's Blog
  85. @balanagaraj
    Please I have aproblem in My application which is develop by c#2010 and Sql Server 2008 and crystal report 11
    This is the tool which I Develop with It
    My problem is that when I Prees on the button which Display the report there is amessage “Fail to open the Connection data base vendor code 18456″
    But all of the project Work Perfectly . and this is the app.config

    Notice that when I attach the data base on Sql Express the report run perfectly but in case of writing attachdbFileName=d:\EXCompany\EXCompany.mdf in app.config
    It appear this message “Fail to open the Connection data base vendor code 18456″
    Please tell me in eng_ahmedselim@yahoo.com

  86. @balanagaraj
    Please I have aproblem in My application which is develop by c#2010 and Sql Server 2008 and crystal report 11
    This is the tool which I Develop with It
    My problem is that when I Prees on the button which Display the report there is amessage “Fail to open the Connection data base vendor code 18456″
    But all of the project Work Perfectly . and this is the app.config

    Notice that when I attach the data base on Sql Express the report run perfectly but in case of writing attachdbFileName=d:\EXCompany\EXCompany.mdf in app.config
    It appear this message “Fail to open the Connection data base vendor code 18456″

  87. @balanagaraj
    thank you very much eng.@balanagaraj For Your Response ;But still the problem already exists and I Suffer From This Problem , and My app.config is

    when I run My application and i press to view my report , i have message says( Faild to open the Connection) please help me to solve this problem

  88. I am having three projects linked to each other through add references and a common solution …….i want to create an exe for the whole solution but the primary output shows only one project only …….

    help required asap ….

    Thanks In advance

  89. hello sir
    sir, i developed one app in c# and i used MSChart in that application, setup and deployed the application. But when Installing application in client place chart is not displaying. Wht may be the problem. wht i hv to do sir?

  90. hi
    How to generate the registration or serial key for our application for single user.

    Please help me sir. Thank you in advance

  91. I WAS CREATED .MSI AS YOU DISCRIBED ABOVE.I USED ACCESS DB MBD FILE AS MY BACK END.I GOT ERROR “PHYSICA PATH NAREN.MDB WAS FOUND”.HOW TO SETUP MY PROJECT WITH .MDB FILE. PLEASE SEND ME SOLUTIONS TO MY E-MAIL.

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  93. i am new to dot net window application.Could u help to find out solution to make application compatible for all operating system……..
    thanks in advance…

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  96. Thank u so much for this upload… These steps completed my MCA project….

    Thanksssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

  97. I have added my .mdf file with in the exe setup file itself…
    Is it possible to install and access the application in another computer with out database installation?
    pls help me…….

    • Hi Sreebanraj,

      If your application setup inbuilt with .mdf file then no need to install SQL Server in target machine. But you should install .NET Framework on that machine. .NET framework installation will provides native support service for SQL Server.

  98. thx sir, it help me alot..
    i build setup project with attached database and i install it on my pc..
    but when i stop sql server service..my application cant access the database which attached to my app..
    it means that a client need to instal sql server to run my application??
    or as u said above that .net framework installation provides native support service for SQL Server.
    so sql server service “wrapped” as one with .net framework installation(SQL Server)??

    sry for my bad english
    thx in advace

  99. hiiii….plzz help me how to add sql server database file in c#.net setup & how to make a fresh c#.net setup exe which include sql databas
    e

  100. thanks,
    i am creating setup and install it but it displays error of oledb(database connection) so, please tell me how to connect access database with setup

    thank you,

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  102. hi,
    I have create the project in vs2008 with sqlserver 2005 and successfully run the inbuild pack.
    when i use the sqlserver 2005 mdb file in vs2010 project the set up will works on the developer machine and its not in client machine .

    I installed .net framework 4.0 in client machine .

    Is any other prerequest is needs to add in the client machine?

    Thanks,
    Selva.

  103. Hi ,

    This works out bt can you plz tell me that how to attach an ms access databse with my set up file?
    I created an set up file successfully but i am not able to attach my Microsoft Access database with it.
    I really need an help..

    Thanks in advance

  104. Hi ,

    Please i need to know how to write an installer class in C# that will create a database and tables on the client machine when the program is being installed. Have really tried but i only end up being able to create the database but cannot run the schema against the new created database to generate the tables.

  105. Hi do you have a dictionary form i want to make my own dictionary but it not run well. i use VB Expess,some thing like when i restore down or maximi the the picture and text box including the words it not reside with the “restore down or maximi”it mean wnti draw the text box or picture 100*200 when”restore down or maximi” it not fit the side automaticaly. 1 more thing when i debug it in to app file it run on my computer but other computer it not run or it show dialog box “not safe or untruse file”

  106. hello sir your tutorial is really nice
    i know these step already my problem is
    how i can attach database to my exe
    i put it with primary out put in project setup
    it goes there but it doesn’t establish the connection
    i am using app.config

    please help me
    it is my very old problem
    umeshsinghgarg@gmail.com

    i haven’t read your all replies in this article if you explained in replies
    because they are very much

    please reply soon

  107. Hey hiiii,
    I have one question that i want to create a project in which i want to execute an .exe in it……
    like there is a window form in which i have 2 buttons ->> shutdown , restart ……
    Now when i click on it shutdown ->>> shutdown.exe will have to be executed……. plz reply as soon as possible……

    • Hi Ankit, Sorry for the delayed response.

      Step1: In shutdown button click, use this code ‘System.Diagnostics.Process.Start(“shutdown exe path/shutdown.exe”);’
      Step 2 : Attach the ‘shutdown.exe’ with your setup project

      When you click the button, it will invoke the exe.

  108. This setup program install application only for current logged in user of windows. But i want to install my application for all window user on a single pc in once and don’t want to re-install it one by one on a single pc. How it could be possible?

  109. i have created a setup using visual studio 2012 with sqlserver 2008.
    that setup is working correctly in my machine but whenever i use it in another machine , it shows an error while fetching data from database ……..plz help !!!!!

  110. It’s OK. But If I want to set up another computer what will be the procedure. I have created one project which Database is SQL Server 2005 and front end VB.Net. I want to set up another computer without installing SQL server 2005 Database,is it possible? If possible then why? Please let me know
    thanks

  111. thanks a lot but i have one question that if my project is based on sql server database then database is inbuilt in setup or install the saperately database on client machine?

  112. Thanking You,
    You are really providing good material from starting that’s why we can get it very perfectly and easily …….thanks……

  113. It is very very Important for me Thank you very much.
    ……………………………….. Thanks…………………………

  114. salu moi cest virgil ! la peocedure m’a beaucoup aider et je tenais à vous remercier! c’est vraiment kool !
    mis à part ce fait , j’ai une question
    je programme un logiciel avec visual studio 2008 et mon SGBD est SQL server 2005 j’ai fini le logiciel mais je ne sais pas comment empaquetter le tout tout en tenant comptre de ma base de donné! en gros je voudrais une procedure me permettant de créer le setup et de l’installer sur une machine client! please cest mon premier projet

  115. hi this is me virgil! procedure help me a lot and I wanted to thank you! this is really kool!
    Apart from that, I have a question
    I program software with visual studio 2008 and my DBMS is SQL Server 2005 I finished the software but I do not know how to package all the while considering my database! basically I want me a procedure to create the setup and install it on a client machine! please this is my first project

  116. u can attach a database by adding it in the application folder of File system.
    just link ur db in |DataDirectory| while coding.

  117. hi,

    can you please help me to create the exe file using vs 2012…I have developed an application using vs2012 and access db..

  118. Hello just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know a few of the pictures
    aren’t loading properly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue.
    I’ve tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same outcome.

  119. hi,
    i have been created setup kin vb.net 2008 with access db but when i run , it will not execute it gives version compatibility message. please tell me what i have to do.

  120. How can we get value from user like username at time of installation and update in app.config file for vb.net window application

    app.config files data

    Yogesh

  121. Thank you for the useful Information. Please tell me how can i create Setup file if my apllication contains Database file. I connected my database through Sql Server. Please help me.

    How to create Setup Include SQL Database please Hlep ….

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