Hi all,

I'm new to MSI repackaging and recently started using Wise Package Studio 5.52. I chose WinZip 9.0 SR-1 as an initial application to use in order to start familiarizing myself with the repackaging process. I managed to successfully repackage the application. The first thing I noticed after the repackage was that WPS decided to put a bunch of the icons into separate hidden features in the install. Is there any specific reason to do this? As an experiment, I moved the shortcuts and files associated with these hidden features into a main feature that I created. The package seems to behave the same after I made this change. Will this consolidation hurt me down the road?

Another question I have is what is the best way to handle HKCU entries? WPS captured all the changed HKCU keys in the initial repackage. Should I just leave these entries as a part of the package? Is there a possibility that leaving these in could cause a self-healing problem?

As a test as to whether or not I needed the HKCU entries, I removed them from the package and performed a test install. The first thing I noticed was the WinZip context menu additions were not showing up for new users until after I ran WinZip under the new user account. WinZip 9 seems to populate the HKCU section with the appropriate registry keys from HKLM when it is first run by a user.

Next, I tracked down the appropriate the HKCU registry key that causes the context menu to show up. I put this key back into my package under the HKCU section and did another test install. With this change, when a new user (who hasn't run WinZip before) right-clicks on a file to access the context menu, msiexec fires off and does a self-heal and puts this registry key into the users profile and the WinZip context menus appear.

What would be the best way to handle these HKCU entries? Should I leave them all in, remove them, or only keep the minimal amount needed to maintain the context menu functionality?

Is there any good general rule as to how to handle HKCU entries when repackaging applications?

Thanks for any help you can provide.

Russ Howard
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I don't think moving the files & shortcuts to a single feature will cause any problem.
Regarding the HKCU registry keys , the best practice , I reckon, would be to keep only those registry keys that are essential for the functionality of the application.[font="Microsoft Sans Serif"]
Answered 03/31/2005 by: Vipin_Acharya
Yellow Belt

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Generally speaking, leaving relevant HKLU entries in a package is fine though it honestly deplends on your method of deployment.

You'll find that most applications that have use specific settings (usernames, passwords, product keys, etc) store them in the HKLU hive.
Answered 03/31/2005 by: Bladerun
Green Belt

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This article may help you with HKCU questions.

Tips and Tricks for HKCU keys

There is also another article by John Mcfaddyen on moving HKCU entries into a feature of their own and making them the parent feature. I have used this method and it works very well.
Answered 04/01/2005 by: MSIMaker
Second Degree Black Belt

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