View Full Version : Problem with the Standalone build using MSDE merge module.

02-11-2006, 01:26 PM
I've no axe to grind but I thought I might share my experience with a really weird problem I had. I use the SAB to build a particular project that contained the MSDE merge module I downloaded. For many months it was working very well but about a week ago it started to misbehave. I had the necessary objects in the SAB directory but somehow the essential glue between the project and the physical files 'broke'. This meant that installing my application was not correctly installing the MSDE prerequisite and hence my database scripts to create the databases were failing. The short of it is that I downloaded another MSDE installation from MS and I off-loaded my use of the prerequisite into its own installation. That means I now have to use another installation to install MSDE but it at least means that when my main application is installed it now creates the databases without a problem.

I've no idea why the merge module started to misbehave but I point this out anyway in case anyone starts to get spooked installations. :)

Christopher Painter
02-11-2006, 01:47 PM
I don't reccomend that you use MSDE merge modules, period.

When Microsoft comes up with an MSP to fix some critical security flaw your customers won't be able to apply it against the MSDE instance that was installed by your application.

Instead do a bootstrapper/setup prereq that uses the official Microsoft release package to install a named instance of MSDE for your app. Then follow up with your app and database creation. This will allow your customers to download MSDE hotfixes from microsoft and patch your instance of MSDE.

Take the official microsoft package and turn it into a setup prereq. Use HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\YourInstanceName to detect if its installed or needs to be installed and setup the command line to do a silent install. This will all happen when you run your setup.exe before your main install runs.

02-12-2006, 06:01 AM

my installation has been used on some eight servers in the UK/US and three countries in South America. The first three or four servers were fine and my merge module for MSDE was running well. That's when it broke and the SA's had to clean up the installation and apply the MSDE scripts by hand. I now package the MSDE installation separately and let the SA do that first. I tried this for the first time a few days ago and it seems to be rock-solid. I've used other merge modules in another installation that installs MDAC and VB runtimes for example and so far they do not cause any problems.

Only the MSDE was a problem even though it was ring-fenced and no other changes to the project file affected it.