I'm new to patching and have a question to pose...

Scenario:

I build a commercial MSI (version 1.0)
I then release a new version (version 1.1)
I release a patch for all those using version 1.0 to upgrade to version 1.1
I release a third version (version 1.2)

I do not want to use incremental patching so is it ok to use v1.0 as the base and use v1.2 as updated version? - and will it work if i apply it to v1.1?

The changes are all file and registry changes..

sorry if its a little confusing but ultmately i want 1 patch to upgrade to the latest version regards of what version i am upgrading. The prod code will stay the same all the time until a new major version comes out.
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The answer is sort of. You can use your 1.2 patch and not worry about the incremental 1.1 patch as long as you are only targeting systems that have 1.0 and not 1.1. If you are hitting any systems that may have the 1.1 patch already then you will need to make provisions for that in your MSI patch package. Patching with MSI's is such a pain sometimes...actually most of the time because of this very problem. To ensure a good install with a newer MSI version I typically recommend uninstalling the old and laying down a whole new version. No one wants to do this but if you are supporting 3+ incremental upgrades the testing cycle alone for all of that can be more of a hassle than it is worth.
Answered 06/01/2007 by: yarborg
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Thanks for the reply,

I would like a patch to cover all previous versions as I release an update practically daily (security based software) and the changes i make are generally the same; basically i update all the binaries each revision.

Do you think patching is the best way? to expect a customer to reinstall daily is a bit much...!
Answered 06/02/2007 by: HotSpot
Orange Senior Belt

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Is there a requirement that the package be an MSI format? For these types of scenarios I typically use EXE based installations. Or there is another way of doing this that many companies use and that is to use Robocopy.exe to daily replicate with a File Share (like DFS) any changes to the local clients computer. In this way you don't have to deploy anything except to one server. Any backout changes are equally simple.

However, if your customers are remote or do not have access to a common file share you can still patch but I would recommend using EXE's instead as you can do a simple file overwrite without the hassle of GUIDs and registry entries etc.
Answered 06/04/2007 by: yarborg
Blue Belt

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Thanks for the reply,
I'm afraid that as i'm hitting corperates MSI is the only way to cover those with only AD to deploy to those whose have all the bells&whistles of a dedicated deployment tool!

I have decided to maintain the home user/small business install as an EXE and for the large businesses do an oracle/adobe/microsoft style of a "Patch Tuesday" (monthly patches). that way i can have the smaller entities using the latest software and ironing out the bugs (hopefully none!!!) for the monthly MSP's for corperates.

Just need to choose a patch day!
Answered 06/04/2007 by: HotSpot
Orange Senior Belt

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