\Tips and TricksPerformanceInstallation Performance
See the "Size" section for tips related to the
size of MSIs, here are some "speed" related tips (generally for MAKEMSI):
- Lengthy Prepare Installation Dialog - MSI Contains Large CAB files
For complex or large MSIs, or if loading from slow media,
Windows Installer can display a small preparation dialog
for an extended period of time.
If files make up the bulk of your MSI you can speed up this
step by asking MAKEMSI to generate
external cab files.
Of course at the end of the day the files need to be read
so your progress dialog will likely display for longer.
- Lengthy Prepare Installation Dialog - Administrative Installations
You can convert the output MAKEMSI creates to an administrative
format which extracts files from cab files and resulting in a
smaller MSI and faster loading time.
These are often used for network installs to speed to initial
loading and hopefully reduce the network traffic in cases where an
installation only installs some of the available features
(however you'd need to do a lot of testing to prove network improvement).
- Large Numbers of Files/Components
Windows installer can be very (and I mean very very) slow to
install or uninstall large numbers of files (or components).
For this reason you may wish to create archive files (zip, cab etc)
containing large numbers of data files so that Windows installer only
handles a relatively few files and you use
custom actions to install and uninstall the many
files (this also speeds up MAKEMSI a lot as well).
You should consider the need for commit and rollback
actions if you use this approach.
- The "MSIFASTINSTALL" Property [5.0+]
This can can be used to avoid the creation of system restore points,
skip costing tasks or send less progress messages.
- Any other tips?
Let me know if you have one! Thanks.