PortableApps.com Launcher 2.1 Released: Make Apps Portable Without Writing Code

Chris Morgan's picture
Submitted by Chris Morgan on May 18, 2011 - 11:27am

logoPortableApps.com is proud to announce that PortableApps.com Launcher 2.1 has been released. The PortableApps.com Launcher™ allows developers, publishers and even technical end-user to portablize apps in PortableApps.com Format without needing to write any code. It's an easy to use multilingual launcher that makes creating portable apps a snap. Once you've updated your app to the current PortableApps.com Format Specification, you can use the PortableApps.com Launcher to handle registry keys, command line options and updating configuration files just by editing a simple INI file. The PortableApps.com Launcher brings the power behind our launchers used in hundreds of apps to everyone. It's already used in most of our apps. And it's open source and completely free.

Update automatically in the PortableApps.com Platform 2.0 Beta 5 by clicking 'Check for Updates'.


ScreenshotThe PortableApps.com Launcher allows you to easily make your apps portable. It features:

  • Proven NSIS core
  • Easy configuration with no coding required
  • Automated language switching of apps with the PortableApps.com Platform
  • Powerful settings file and directory moving
  • Easy registry portablization
  • Custom code in launchers where needed
  • And many more features for making professional portable apps
  • Works from command line and Send To (just pass the portable app's main directory, e.g. X:\PortableApps\FileZillaPortable)
  • Licensed for use with free open source and freeware
  • Commercial use by contacting PortableApps.com

For complete details, read the PortableApps.com Launcher Manual (also included with the app).

For creating portable apps, we recommend that you use the PortableApps.com Development Toolkit which is in development, or the PortableApps.com Application Template 2.1 which is also available.

This update strengthens the core and adds many new features for making better portable apps. For a complete list of the changes and new features in this version, please refer to the PortableApps.com Launcher 2.1 release notes.

Get Help Packaging for PortableApps.com

If you need help packaging your software in PortableApps.com Format or using the PortableApps.com Launcher, just post a note to the Development Forum and we'll help you out.

PortableApps.com Installer / PortableApps.com Format

PortableApps.com Launcher is packaged as a PortableApps.com Installer so it will automatically detect an existing PortableApps.com installation when your drive is plugged in. It supports upgrades by installing right over an existing copy, preserving all settings. And it's in PortableApps.com Format, so it automatically works with the PortableApps.com Suite including the Menu and Backup Utility.


The PortableApps.com Launcher is available for immediate download from the PortableApps.com Launcher homepage. Get it today!

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John T. Haller's picture

Thanks Chris for all your hard work on this. 2.1 is a great jump forward in making all our lives easier.

For developers, when upgrading, be sure you're now handling directory moves with the partial path variables so users can move apps around in directories. Once you've done that (if necessary) and confirmed it, be sure to set DirectoryMoveOK=yes in the launcher.ini so users aren't bothered by the directory moved warning which is now shown by default.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

Chris Morgan's picture

And people should test it and make it work, not just set it - so refer to the manual (the release notes are a good starting point) for how to use the new functionality. The general idea is that we're wanting all apps to support directory moving (we do have a planned use for it), but as it's a new feature, for the moment we aren't assuming that all apps will necessarily do it - you should, though.

As well as using this new support for directory moving, I would also like to draw people's attention to the release checklist when publishing your apps. It's also handy for testers. It'll ensure better testing. (I should have pointed it out in the release notes, but forgot about it till afterwards.)

See also my blog post today, PAL 2.1 released, 2.2 underway, which gives further details of what's happening and where PAL is heading.

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