Thoughts about setup and deployment issues, WiX, XNA, the .NET Framework and Visual Studio
All postings are provided AS IS
with no warranties, and confer no rights. Additionally, views expressed
herein are my own and not those of my employer, Microsoft.
<updated on June 6, 2005 - reworded one of the caveats and moved it to be caveat #1 based on the comment from HeathS about the requirement that Windows Installer 3.x be present in order to install .NET Framework 2.0 hotfixes or service packs>
Some of you may have noticed that .NET Framework 2.0 beta 2 requires a minimum version of Windows Installer 3.0 and if it is not installed on the computer, you will have to download it and install it as a separate step. This is a change from .NET Framework 2.0 beta 1, which required a minimum version of Windows Installer 2.0 and carried the installation packages for Windows Installer 2.0 as part of the dotnetfx.exe package.
The increased minimum requirement from Windows Installer 2.0 to Windows Installer 3.0 (and possibly to 3.1 by the time .NET Framework 2.0 ships) is due to a lot of servicing/patching fixes available in Windows Installer 3.x. Since there aren't any strict setup-time requirements for Windows Installer 3.0 in the .NET Framework setup, you can use some unsupported reverse engineering tricks to make .NET Framework 2.0 beta 2 setup work if you only have Windows Installer 2.0 installed.
Before I list the steps I want to list a couple of important caveats:
With that out of the way, here are the steps you can use to get .NET Framework 2.0 beta 2 to install on a machine with only Windows Installer 2.0 present:
Note that if you want to use these steps for one of the 64-bit versions of .NET Framework 2.0, you should substitute "netfx64.exe" for every instance of "dotnetfx.exe" above.