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How to convert from Wise projects to Installshield

We have a fairly large MSI-installation with six features, a few custom actions, some merge modules, pre requisites and a system search. The installation is automatically built from files updated every night.

We are currently using Wise Installation Studio, which recently was discontinued. Our options are to upgrade to Wise Package Studio (similar to AdminStudio I think) or to change installer. We have used Installshield earlier and we are wondering if we have to rewrite the installation from scratch if we change back.

Flexera claims that the conversion is easy using the Repackager:
"InstallShield can even convert your Wise Installation Studio projects to InstallShield automatically using the InstallShield Repackager. The InstallShield Repackager will grab your Wise projects and do all the conversion work for you, so you don’t lose your investment in your existing Wise projects."

They also claims that the Repackager is a part of Installshield Premium.

I have downloaded the trialversion of Installshield 2011 Premium but no Repackager was included. I was able to open the Wise projectfile (wsi) by forcing the File open dialog to show these files, recognising files, system searches, dialogs, features and custom actions as it is shown in Wise Installation Studio. However, I could not compile the installation or save to any Installshield formats. Since Installshield is able to interprete the file, this could have been the perfect conversion tool.

Then I downloaded the trialversion of AdminStudio 9.5, which included the suggested tool Repackager. It can open Wise script projects (wse), but not MSI-projects (wsi). Forcing it to open a wsi-file gives an error message. I then tried to "Capture an Installation Using Repackaging Wizard" using the recommended Installation Monitoring option as shown in the video/webinar in the link above. The resulting Installshield-project/installation was useless for us. All feature information, original file sources etc were lost.

Is there any way to convert a Wise MSI-project to Installshield, like Flexera claims? If so, what did I do wrong?

Any help is greatly appreaciated!
(2) Replies
The trial versions of InstallShield do not contain the Repackager...they tell you to download the Admin studio trial version that does have the same tool. You do not get the repackager tool in InstallShield unless you buy the product, and it may only come in the premier version.

Here is a link to a webinar that walks you through a simple conversion. I believe that this creates not just a new .msi file, but also the .ism project file...

The problem with this demo is that it is way too simple. Like you, we have many merge modules, and the demo only deals with an installer that has no merge modules.

I have no knowledge of how to convert the merge modules and can find no documentation...which probably means that it cannot be done. In the WISE merge module, you are able to specify where in the calling master install you want the custom actions to be put. In the InstallShield merge module, you create custom actions but do not specify where they are to be used in the calling installer. In the calling\master installer, when you include the merge module, you then specify exactly where in the sequence you want those custom actions to go. may not be possible to convert a WISE MM to an InstallShield MM.

As for converting .wse projects, it would be nice if you could document how to do this...if it can be done.
Hi There,

For converting Merge Modules over to InstallShield-format modules, this is something that the "Wizard" mode would handle.

Simply go to File -> Open -> browse to the *.msm -> Select the "Open As" option and set it to 'Wizard'.

This should migrate over the Wise module into a new InstallShield project for further editing. Keep in mind, though, that compiled Wise script may not carry over (I can't say for certain myself).

Regarding the ability to sequence custom actions in the parent project, but while designing the merge module, you have this capability in InstallShield, but there's no specific view for it. It's accessible through the Direct Editor's tables like "ModuleInstallExecuteSequence" and "ModuleInstallUISequence".