Benefits of no install versions ?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by CloneRanger, Feb 26, 2011.

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  1. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

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    Looked for the slim version of Ccleaner, but no show, so DL'd the NIV & uninstalled the previous slim.

    Was wondering, apart from not wanting toolbars etc etc, & not just pertaining to CC but generally, why use larger install versions of Apps, with possibly lots of registry garbage etc, if we have the option to use nice neat NIV's ?
     
  2. m00nbl00d

    m00nbl00d Registered Member

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    I think the benefits would be more to geek users. For those we like to call Jane/Joe, it's a lot simpler just to install them and that way make the upgrading process a no brain.

    Unless we're dealing with a single executable file like, for example, HiJackThis portable version, they'll come in a zipped file users would have to unpack and then copy and paste them to their proper location. It's a lot faster just to install/upgrade them, I think.

    Can you imagine what would be like having to deal with dozens of non-installable versions? (Please, note that I'm not including single executables. But, not all non-installable applications are like that.)
     
  3. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

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    @ m00nbl00d

    I suppose so ! Still my feelings are it's smoother/neater etc to have NIV's than not, if they perform the same functions ;)
     
  4. dbknox

    dbknox Registered Member

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    I agree, plus one can carry them on a Flash drive.
     
  5. m00nbl00d

    m00nbl00d Registered Member

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    Indeed, I do enjoy the portable applications. If I don't like an application or no longer need it, then I ditch it without leaving a mess behind.
     
  6. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    I have a "thing" for clean installs. If I can, I usually make a copy/paste version. If it is something that I "need" to update, then I go ahead and install it normally. But for things like IMG-burn, I get a version I like, and feel no need to upgrade it unless I absolutely need what is in the new version.

    In many instances then, I have extracted the files needed. Many programs, especially utilities, only have the main program directory (usually in %programfiles%) and a few registry entries. Some will also need to place a .dll into %sysdir% and have them registered, but not many that I use. Often you can just make a copy/paste version with a .reg file to merge for everything to work. Of course you don't get uninstall info nor start menu stuff.

    Years ago now I got into .inf files quite heavily. I made a program that allowed me to create my own installers based of .inf setup. It made .cab files, created start menu items, registered dlls, installed services, etc etc. I actually go to the point I could install the old F-Prot AV v4. It was, back then, quite an accomplishment for me because F-Prot was particuarily complicated in how it installed itself. I was into making unattended installs and made hundreds of automated installs for everything I ever used. I even made a script that made automated install scripts o_O

    Suffice to say that while it may be a "geek" thing, I love that nice clean install without registry/files spread out all over the place. I despise MSI installers because normally they put crap everywhere.

    Benefits? I think a few programs might benefit from no install versions, but as has been said, most novice users probably will only find frustration rather than benefit.

    Sul.
     
  7. safeguy

    safeguy Registered Member

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    If it's a program that I often use (e.g. on a daily basis), then I would prefer having the program installed on my PC. Here are a few personal reasons for this:

    1. Sometimes the installed version integrates with the rest of the system 'nicely' ( e.g. right-click menu entries or the file association)

    2. Sometimes the portable version has made certain changes to affect it's performance on USB drives. E.g. PortableApps Firefox While it may bring about better performance on USB drives, at times one may experience a slowdown or negative performance impact when used on the system drive itself....

    3. Portable version can at times have "slower" updates....

    However, for those apps that I do find use for but not frequent enough to justify an installation, then I would make use of the portable version instead. These include apps like file recovery programs, tweak tools, TheWindowsClub tools, a few NirSoft tools, video converters, HJSplit, Double Driver, etc etc
    (I have portable program launchers like ASuite for some while others I just let them be on their own)

    Usually, I wouldn't keep them up-to-date unless it's a build that introduces new features that I want or fixes that bring upon improvement/stability. This leaves me the hassle of abiding by the constant mantra of having to "keep every single program installed on your PC updated" and it keeps my list of installed programs smaller.:p

    I've tried being a clean "freak", insisting on replacing installed programs that I use frequently with their portable version instead (including the likes of CCleaner, Firefox, Chrome, VLC, etc) but after a while decided that it's not my cup of cake. I still have those programs on my spare thumb-drive but don't use them frequently. Liberkey fans would probably mention Liberkey's KeyFileAssoc.exe tool....(let's not get into the GPL issue) and while it's 'nice' , it doesn't quite feel the same...and those purists would argue that it's no longer really 'portable' in it's purest holiest definition....
     
  8. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    I agree, although I don't use "portable versions" that have been pre-configured that way usually. Instead, if I know I am not going to worry about a program needing updates, I make a copy/paste version of it, and put it away in the archives. I have spent a lot of time structuring my archives so that getting to a specific tool is pretty easy and fast. So I leave the tool in the archive area, and if it is a nice tool, it simply runs from where I store it, when I need it, without needing registry entries or other dependencies. I don't mind a registry entry that is program specific, like settings etc, but I prefer .ini files that are local to the directory. In this manner I am able to set the options to my likings, and across any OS install the usage of the tool remains the same. This is probably not how the majority ever uses things, but I am on the fringe you know ;)

    Sul.
     
  9. m00nbl00d

    m00nbl00d Registered Member

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    Exactly! Unless I'm dealing with some portable (a single executable file) done by the original author, just as the example I previously gave - HiJackThis - I rather extract the installer contents and grab what's needed and place it in a folder.

    I've done this with 7-zip and a few other applications. It just works. :D

    The only application I don't bother is the web browser, and simply because it's already kind of a portable version - just extract the contents and it's up and running.
     
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