I have scheduled programs at work that convert databases to Palm "pdb" format. I then automatically zip and email out all the resulting pdb files to the Palm users in my company who need to carry the data with them. Each zip file I send out might contain one or two dozen pdb files. Several users have a nasty habit of saving the zip file to disk, extracting the pdb files, then installing the pdb files. What a waste! Just to make things worse, half the users can't remember where they saved an attachment 30 seconds after they saved it. Well, maybe I exaggerate a bit. But you know what I mean!
I decided to write an install program so my users could open the zip file directly from their email program (which they could always do by double-clicking the attachment), then just press the "Setup" button on WinZip without going through the separate steps of saving and extracting.
On the programming side, I made the program try to locate the user's Palm "Install" directory. If it finds it, the program simply copies the PDB and PRC files there. If it can't find the install directory, it launches the Palm installer and lets it handle the problem.
Doesn't have to be used to install Palm files: Can be used as a generic install program.
Run by itself in a directory that contains pdb or prc files, it will install those files.
Can display a "ReadMe" file before starting.
Can remember the selected user name if there are multiple users.
Either the distributor (you!) or the end-user can direct installation to all users.
Existing files in the user's install directory are replaced. No "File Already Exists" warnings.
Users of old (or no) Palm Desktop versions are detected and directed to an update location.
Can run scripts before installing the pdb/prc files (scripts can be in any language and can do almost anything).
Detects if the user does not have the correct scripting engine and directs the user to a download location.
All features controlled by a simple INI file.
Can't handle more than 256 users per Windows login (Pretty unlikely).
Can't handle Palm user name exceeding 20 characters (Palm Desktop limits it to that much now).
Can't handle Palm user directory name exceeding 8 digits (Palm Desktop limits it to that much now).
Assumes Palm User ID will not exceed 16 bits (I've never seen it exceed 15 bits).
Uses default registry permissions, so may not work under NT or better.
Only tested on Palm desktop versions 3.0.1, 3.1, and 4.0.1 under Windows 95.
I do know it runs okay as a generic install program under NT4, I just haven't installed Palm files with it on NT.
Click the "Download Now" icon above to get the program, documentation, and source code. Free and "Public Domain" so you can use it however you want to without worrying.
This program was written with Visual Basic 5 and requires the Visual
Basic 5 runtime files to function. You can download an installer for the
VB5 runtime files from either of these locations:
If you're concerned the end-user won't have VB5 runtimes, all you have to do is include Msvbvm50.dll in the same directory as this program.
setup programs (if you don't like mine!):
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Bad links? Questions? Send me mail.