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What’s new in PACE Suite 4.6

In our latest PACE Suite 4.6, we introduse a completely new user interface for working with files in MSI Editor. Our new Files tab is not simply a redesign but a new approach to reviewing and managing files and folders, with complex tasks made easy even for newcomers to application packaging. PACE Suite 4.6 now is truly the packaging tool – both for experts and for beginners to the sphere.

Another key feature we are launching in this release is media settings management. The essential part of our approach to Media is that MSI Editor will process all added files only once when you save your package. This allows us to boost the performance of saving packages even further.

As always, PACE Suite helps you to create error-free, high-quality packages. New Files tab now has a vast amount of validation rules and displays errors so you can fix them before building your package. Moreover, Remove feature on the Files tab now offers an even better level of purity when you remove a resource.

And we have only started – there are many more new improvements to working with files and folders in MSI Editor. Read on to learn about each new handy feature in more detail.

New Files tab in MSI Editor

Files tab now displays all files and folders in a tree list view that makes it easier to see all contents of all folders.

new files tab

In the tree list, you can immediately see file’s details such as type, size, versions and MSI table from which a resource has been read. All added, modified, or removed resources are highlighted with colors, and you can quickly undo any of those changes. New Files tab also has filters that hide empty folders, removed resources and resources without permissions.

A quick way to find and fix errors

The tree list has a vast amount of validation rules so you can fix errors before testing or building your package. For instance, it checks if there are files with a similar name or similar target path, even if they are in different folders. Another example – the tree list shows resources with forbidden characters in a name.

fix errors in msi

The number of validation errors is calculated and displayed in the status bar below the tree list so you will not miss any errors.

Unique Details pane for each type of resources

In MSI Editor, Files tab has four types of resources – folders, files, INI files, and duplicate files – for each of which it offers its own Details pane. The Details pane shows name, target and source paths, and other relevant details and attributes. For INI files, you can review their contents in their Details pane.

msi details pane

You can also edit all abovementioned details for each resource in their respective Property windows.

msi propery window

For instance, for files, you can change version, name, language, sequence number or even target installation folder and set files to be read-only. You can also change specific details for INI files, duplicate files, and folders.

Redesigned permissions management

MSI Editor now has a new permission management property, and you can change permissions for each type of resources.

msi permissions management

You can also quickly enable or disable permissions for any resource.

Updated “Add system folder” feature

We have reviewed the list of system folders you can add to your packages to ensure you get all modern and relevant options.

msi standard folders

You can also find descriptions for each standard folder.

“Move to folder” feature

Now, you can move any resource to a new place in just one click and without any leftovers.

msi move to folder

Moving has an advanced mechanism that does not leave empty components in your MSI. Easily take one file from multi-file component and place it in a new location (and for this file a new component will be created according to the packaging best practices).

“Set as INSTALLDIR” feature

In the context menu, you will find a new feature Set as INSTALLDIR, which allows to make any folder INSTALLDIR.

msi installdir

Pretty obvious but pretty useful, isn’t it?

New media settings for better performance

We have removed media settings from Import Files and Add Driver Wizards because we have a new dedicated Media tab for them. New Media tab allows managing how files will be saved to the package.

msi media settings

MSI Editor will process all added files only once when you save your package. That allows you to choose or edit the necessary compression type after importing the files or at any convenient time. However, the best part is that saving packages in MSI Editor became faster and results in even cleaner packages because, for instance, all files will be placed into one CAB.
Experts can choose to mix different compression types in one package. That’s possible because MSI Editor processes installation source files according to the entries in Media table.
Yet another useful feature this release brings is rebuilding your MSI with any supported compression type. For instance, you open a package with some files saved as CABs and others saved as Uncompressed; now, you can process them all using one compression type.

msi rebuilding

Here’s another crowd pleaser: a considerable number of our clients have asked us to add a new compression type – Internal CAB (cabinet) – and we delivered.
Finally, one more area for customization you will appreciate. If you choose an External or Internal type, you can manage CAB options such as name template, compression algorithm, and maximum CAB size for splitting the files into several CABs.

And even more improvements!

MSI Editor

  • We enhanced the mechanism behind the “Remove” feature in the Files tab to offer you top-level purity: if you remove a resource all referenced items will be removed too, without any leftovers in your package.
  • We improved the appearance of the selected items in Trees, Lists, and Grids so you can see the highlighted errors and changes better.

MSI Generator

Moving to a unified user experience in PACE Suite applications, MSI Generator now lets you to choose INI file handling options just the way you used to do it in MSI Editor.

msi generator ini files

You can find detailed description of the new features in PACE Suite 4.6 Release Notes. Don’t forget to check our PACE Suite User Manual – your go-to guide to software packaging with PACE Suite.
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