Advice on deploying 'splash screen' apps
europe at ehug.info
Sun Oct 16 16:33:09 CDT 2005
If the application is updating application components, these
components should reside in the application folder. This may be
in the application package, on MacOS X. It would be best if the
update would take place after permission of the user and
optionally after entering the master password of the system.
If the components that are updated are user specific, you may
put them into the user library, application support, or
documents folder. I would use the documents folder only if the
user is assumed to have access to the updated files.
Often, I put components that need to be accessible to the user
but belong to the application itself into the application
folder. Only if I'm sure that the user doesn't need to access
the files, I put them into the application package.
I don't use folder names of the form com.company.app because it
is not commonly accepted on all platforms and I think Mac users
don't have a problem with traditional names.
On Windows, there is the Documents and Settings folder where you
can store settings for All Users or for a specific user. These
folders contain the Application Data folder, which might be a
good place to store files that are not directly a part of your
application. Again, if the files are components of the
application itself, I would put them into the folder of your
application. You might also put files into the System or folder
of Windows. If the user needs access to the files, I'd put them
into the Documents folder.
This may be different from official rules, if there are any. If
someone has an opinion different from what I write here, it
would be interesting to know the arguments for his or her approach.
Ben Rubinstein wrote:
> I've done a few little splash screen apps with very limited deployment
> (eg 1-3 users); and some completely self-contained apps with wider
> Now I'd like to make one of my more widely deployed apps into a
> splash-screen based app, so that it can update itself over the net.
> Where I've done this on the very custom apps, I've been happy to have
> the standalone live in a folder with a 'service' folder, in which it
> keeps the elements updated over the net, user prefs stack, etc.
> However, the app I want to revise is currently used (on both Mac and
> Windows) as just a single file (actually in the case of the Mac, a
> package, but to the users it's a single file), storing preferences in an
> XML file in the nominated preferences area, and I'd like ideally to keep
> it that way.
> So my question then is where should I keep the updatable elements of the
> On the Mac, the two options I would guess are:
> - inside the standalone app's package;
> - in a folder called something like 'com.cogapp.myapp' in either
> "/Library/Application Support" or "~/Library/Application Support".
> Could anyone comment on the pros and cons of these two approaches?
> On Windows... I'm a stranger around those parts. Obviously the package
> situation doesn't exist. Is there an equivalent location to the
> "Application Support" trees? Or is it more normal to have your app in a
> folder with its support files?
> I'd be very grateful for comments, experience, tips, etc.
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