Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Comparing two MSI Files using SuperOrca

ZUGJ5HE9MTMX SuperOrca (from "Pantaray Research Ltd.") is a free tool that can be use to explore and manipulate MSI files.

The two features that I like the most are the following:
  • Not lock the MSI file you are working on, so you can test it with other tools or even install it while the file is still opened in SuperOrca.
  • Provide a powerful "Compare" function that will compare two MSI files
It is very easy to use.

You can find the feature in Tools | Compare MSI Files

Then you select the two files that you want compare and press "Refresh". The results are shown in the usual way using tables.

From the example you can see that the property ARPCONTACT is changed from "Andrea Angella." to "Angella Andrea".

This tool is very useful for learning an MSI generator tool because allow you to understand the effects of your changes.

For my example, I simply changed the "Author" property in my setup project in Visual Studio and I rebuilt the project.

Using the tool I realized that not only the "author" property is changed but also some properties in the Icon and Shortcut table. I didn't expected this behavior.

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