Recently I tried out InstallAware Application Virtualization. If you have looked at the wide variety of application virtualization solutions which are now available, you may have noticed a trend. Only a few provide streaming capabilities, the majority are clientless\agentless solutions. What I mean by this is, the streamed solutions or even some of the hosted solutions come with a client software which must be installed on your end users devices in order for users to leverage your virtual applications. But the majority of products don’t have that requirement. The applications these solutions create are frequently referred to as ‘portable’ applications. This is because you capture the install of your regular windows application which then creates a standalone .exe (usually). With some solutions you may get a .exe for each shortcut or entry point in your application e.g. if you virtualize office you will get an EXCEL.exe and a OUTLOOK.exe. You can then launch the .exe and your application should run from any Windows OS which is supported by the applications vendor. This is an important distinction, you should note that these portable applications will still leverage local resources on your machine, so it’s not a case that you can take your EXCEL.exe and launch it on an Apple MAC or Linux machine.
Portable applications provide you the benefit of being able to run your applications from various storage devices e.g. CD\DVD Drive, USB key, Physical hard disk and most also will run from a network share. InstallAware is one of these products which is clientless and promotes the use of ‘portable’ applications. The install and ‘packaging’ process for InstallAware is very simple. You can follow my instructions below.