Setup Factory eases pain of creating setup.exe files

You have written a one of a kind, industry-leading, market-dominating, revolutionary new application, but are now faced with the realization that without an easy setup.exe the majority of your users are going have problems installing it. Back to the programming table – or is it?

IndigoRose’s Setup Factory 5.0 is here to help you get that new software to market, even if the market is a dozen users in your company. The program is designed to help software developers create an easy-to-use and flexible installation system, without having to learn a proprietary scripting language.

It is all quite simple, according to Colin Adams, president of Winnipeg-based IndigoRose Corp. “You basically add files to the project, tell it to build it, it creates a single-file self installing executable which can be distributed on CD-ROM, over a network or [via] the Internet.”

He added that the software’s Project Wizard walks you through all of the necessary steps. It asks the user various questions like company name, product title and version. “Even though it doesn’t have a programming language it allows you to do a lot of complex things,” Adams said.

The Project Wizard assists developers by creating a working installation that can then be edited using the RAD environment, according to the company. There is also built-in support for Visual Basic, ODBC, ADO, OLE DB, Adobe Acrobat and QuickTime.

Carl Strempler, vice-president of product innovations at London, Ont.-based Auto-Administrator International Inc., uses the product – and likes what he sees. “We have tried other utilities and built our own, but we found that Setup Factory was easier to use and maintain,” he said.

Strempler, whose company creates software to help run tax and utility billings for municipalities and distributes their applications to over 300 clients, particularly liked the automated search function, which allows the program to search out the correct default installation path. He says this addition saves additional support time since the user is not searching around to find the correct directory to update an application.

Neil Watts, application development manager for British Telecom (BT) in London, England, is a fan of a few of the other new features in Setup Factory 5.0. When an application update is done, version 5.0 removes all of the old files from the previous directory. He said since BT uses Setup Factory to do “any sort of ad hoc distribution of software” this feature is particularly useful. He added that “despite its ease of use, it still provides a quite high level of functionality.” As developers create setup.exe files, they can customize install screens and text to create their own look and feel.

Features to help customize the set-up include control over graphics, text, font, colours, styles and sizes. Another added feature is the ability to embed a list of correct serial numbers, thus adding a security measure to help programmers protect their work.

As for a wish list for future versions, Watts says the only addition he can think of is adding a test button right after you build the file to make sure it works. Both Strempler and Watts said they are extremely impressed by the support desk, and in Watts case, that he gets e-mail responses to his queries within 12 hours, even given the time difference.

Setup Factory 5.0 ( is available for US$295.

IndigoRose is at 1-800-665-9668.