The final version of Windows Installer 4.5 went live on June 2, 2008, being delivered in packages tailored for Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista and Windows XP. Version 4.5 of the Software Development Kit accompanying Windows Installer 4.5 is also available for download, coming with support for the same range of client and server operating systems. Via the SDK, Microsoft is essentially offering a variety of resources from tools to utilities, but also samples, and documentation, all updated for Windows Installer 4.5.
"These updated Windows Installer files will also be included in the next version of the Windows SDK. The Windows SDK installed prior versions of the Windows Installer files by default to ProgramFiles - Microsoft - Windows SDKs - [version]. This new standalone SDK installs the Windows Installer content to a different default location of ProgramFiles - Windows Installer 4.5 SDK, and therefore will not overwrite files installed by the Windows SDK," informed a member of the Windows SDK team.
With the Software Development Kit, developers can put together but also edit packages and patches for Windows Installer 4.5. In this context, the SDK offers Windows Installer developers a comprehensive collection of libraries, headers, as well as samples designed for both code and patches, in addition to the integrated tools.
"Included in the Windows Installer 4.5 SDK: updated versions of a set of these Windows Installer Development Tools, including the popular installer for Orca, installed by default to ProgramFiles - Windows Installer 4.5 SDK - Tools. Windows Installer help documentation in CHM format installs to ProgramFiles - Windows Installer 4.5 SDK - Doc - msi45.chm This CHM file has not shipped with the Windows Installer SDK in a while, and it is a handy reference for Windows Installer-specific information," the Windows SDK member added.
As far as the Windows Installer 4.5 is concerned, Zainab Hakim, test engineer for the WI MSI team, pointed out the small differences in the labeling of the packages designed to limit releases on certain operating systems. In this regard, version 4.5.6000.20817 of the Windows Installer can be deployed on Vista RTM Build 6000, v.4.5.6001.22162 on Vista SP1 Build 6001 and Windows Server 2008 RTM Build 6001, while 4.5.6001.22159 is available for XP SP2 and SP3, Windows Server 2003 SP1 and SP2.
Windows Installer 4.5 SDK is available for download here.
Windows Installer 4.5 is available for download here.