We are in the process of migrating away from Installshield to Wix. It is a good tool if you don’t mind a bit of commandline work (for the record: I’m a VIM user 😉
Would love to see your ideas for IsWix and how you’re willing to enhance it. I might even consider contributing to it.
IsWiX is already a very usable tool at my day job as it was designed for our specific needs. However, I’d love to grow it into general purpose tool. With that in mind, here is a short list of stretch goals I have for IsWiX. I am also very open minded to feedback to see where people would like to see this project go.
I had written a user manual for IsWiX but it used a company confidential template so I left it behind.
I’d like to develop a one hour overview of Windows Installer / WiX technologies targeted at traditional developers for use at CodeCamp and DotNet User Group type events. I am somewhat concerned that there might not be much interest in this from developers.
Robust Automation Interface
SDK Documentation and Visual Studio Project Templates to help people write designers and domain objects for Fireworks / IsWiX.
Support for Sharp Develop
Matt Ward was very helpful in coaching me in the use of their XmlEditor control and I know they are WiX fans so I’d like to try to give something back. Combining SharpDevelop, WiX and IsWiX seems like a no brainer for small companies and developing markets who can’t afford Visual Studio / InstallShield.
Improvements to the XML Editor
IsWiX is meant to be used with Votive which already has a decent XML editor. The XML editor in IsWiX was initially implemented primarily as a way to preview the changes to the in memory document but it would be nice to mature it to a point of being similar in capabilities of Visual Studio but a lot lighter weight.
VIM Text Editor
OK, this is somewhat a gag feature ( but I’m actually serious here ) but it would be interesting to somehow host VIM in a Winforms control. Imagine switching from designer mode to editor mode and using all the VIM tricks you are used to and then switching back to designer mode.
Refactor Files and Folders
I need to clean this up to use proper domain objects and allow it to exist in Product’s, Fragments or Modules. It currently only supports Modules since that was the easiest path to supporting our use case.
Add the ability for the Files and Folders designer to interact with Heat to perform COM harvesting and authoring. Currently I use a utility that serves as a front end to heat to author the COM snippets and then manually integrate them using the text editor.
Finish work on Custom Tables Schema Editor and implement Services, Registry and ShortCuts Designers