PortableApps.com Installer 1.0 Released

John T. Haller's picture
Submitted by John T. Haller on November 19, 2009 - 9:36pm

logoPortableApps.com Installer 1.0 has been released. The PortableApps.com Installer is an easy-to-use tool that packages portable apps in PortableApps.com Format into an installer without having to write or compile any code. This release fixes several bugs, updates translations and improves functionality. No changes need to be made to existing PortableApps.com Format apps with this release. The PortableApps.com Installer is available for all developers to use and can be used freely with free open source and freeware applications provided the application follows the current PortableApps.com Format Specification. Commercial use is available by contacting PortableApps.com.

Read on for more details...

PortableApps.com Installer Features

Installer ScreenshotThe PortableApps.com Installer allows you to easily package your portable apps. It features:

  • Proven NSIS installer core
  • Excellent compression for distribution
  • Easy configuration with no coding required
  • Multilingual with 58 Languages
  • Optional sections
  • Automatic integration with the PortableApps.com Platform
  • Works from command line and Send To (just pass the portable app's main directory, e.g. X:\PortableApps\FileZillaPortable)
  • Interactive mode to assist with missing entries
  • Licensed for use with free open source and freeware
  • Commercial use by contacting PortableApps.com

What's New in the Installer?

This release fixes bugs related to spaces in applications to close and directories when downloads are available. Many translations have been updated to include download and copying files. The installer has been improved to show a simplified installation screen to users. Several additional features have also been added to work better with the upcoming PortableApps.com Platform and Updater releases.

This update of the PortableApps.com Installer allows software publishers to package their apps using our popular tools. Open source projects and freeware publishers can use our installer (and all source is included and licensed under the GPL) and release their own PAF files. A special exception to the GPL is granted for all no-cost software. Commercial publishers can contact us for permission.

Get Help Packaging for PortableApps.com

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

PortableApps.com Installer / PortableApps.com Format

PortableApps.com Installer is packaged, appropriately, 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 Installer is available for immediate download from the PortableApps.com Installer homepage. Get it today!

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Chris Morgan's picture

Thanks for that John... though sometimes I wonder if it was better when no spaces were allowed, the failure to compile helped someone in IRC pick up something they'd missed this morning... Blum

I am a Christian and a developer and moderator here.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

Why is this called "PortableApps.com Installer"? That's going to confuse newbies--they'll think it's an app used for installing already-existing stuff when in reality it's a tool for creating PA.c installers. It's like if they called Visual Studio "Windows", or if, say, the NSIS compiler was called "Nullsoft Installer".

Every time I read the description of it to reconfirm what it function is and mind you, I am no noob xD

We don't need a reason to help people ~ Zidane

spg SCOTT's picture

Ever eager to learn more, I am trying this out...

Would I be right in saying that it has to be done on a program that is already installed?

Forget it, I think I have misunderstood the point of this app...I had the wrong Idea about it...

“There is a computer disease that anybody who works with computers knows about. It's a very serious disease and it interferes completely with the work. The trouble with computers is that you 'play' with them!”Richard Feynman

It's the name that probably got you. This is not actually an installer itself, but a tool for making installers out of apps that are already in PortableApps.com Format.


I want to transform a normal app into PortableApp format. What is the easiest way to go?

What "installer" should I use to capture the original app, registry keys etc then package it in portableapp format?


Chris Morgan's picture

Please read the field guide and PortableApps.com Format specification for starters.

I am a Christian and a developer and moderator here.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

It is not like, you just capture an app, you will have to code launcher and do the tweaking of settings.etc your self.

Have a look on the following link : Creating A Portable App: A Guerilla Field Guide

Optionally you could start using a universal launcher, like :
Chris's PortableApps.com Launcher
Portable Application Template

That should get you started !

Formerly Gringoloco
Windows XP Pro sp3 x32

- any help and manual for this program ??? (HowTo)
- create executable paf.exe or what file extension?
- createo executable exe from source code or from what?
- is it able to create batch programs installer and how?
- can create (exe / paf.exe) from (zip/7z/tar) ? or from source code or what ?

sorry for stupid questions, but want to understand that

Simeon's picture

It packages a portable app with is in the folder layout required/outlined by the PortableApps.com Format™ 1.0 specification.
It creates an executable out of a set of folders. Its a little bit like a sfx archive, only its more advanced.

For more help/info I suggest you read the spec. That should make things clearer.

"What about Love?" - "Overrated. Biochemically no different than eating large quantities of chocolate." - Al Pacino in The Devils Advocate

Hi Simeon, thanks for your answer, But if I want to be frank, I don´t understand specs or even nothing of these. Im not developer, just want to know what does and from what. Maybe some easy respond to understand for everyone will be helpfull.

the bit that takes all the manually done hard work of making an app portable, and rolls it up into the single file that ends in .paf.exe for download - it assembles the installer, nothing more than that.

In no way does it do any of the work of making an app portable, it just packages up the work that the developer has done.

If you're not developing apps, then you really don't need this, at all.

Now is much more clearly. Smile

"In no way does it do any of the work of making an app portable, it just packages up the work that the developer has done."

..... so if I have zip/tar packaged program, this "PA.com Installer" dont create from its content paf.exe ???

If so, You have true, this is absolutely not for me .... And I have to wait, if my favourite apps will be paf.exe packaged by someone of You - a portable apps developers .... so very long time probably Sad

not to take personally, (Miranda packaged is, and frequently updated = +1)
thanks for help, have a nice day! Wink

it doesn't ocnvert a .zip packaged application into a portable app, no.

You still need a dev to create the launcher that handles settings, registry, etc., to create the folder structure, to handle default data and setup, to organise all the components into the correct places, and then, once all that is done (the launcher is the hard bit), they can use this to assemble the .paf.exe for everyone to download and enjoy.

Is allow me change icon, added license aggrement page, and change checkbox in my installer? And why must have help.html in main folder. But i like pdf or chm than html format. And i can modifity brand name and all resource but i kept pa installer v 1.0 in description main exe for i use this installer maker. Is no illegal?

Andibad, i interesting about this portable app website and great can save all file to my flashdisk 2-8 gb and no file in host computer, i like that.

Chris Morgan's picture

It's the PortableApps.com Installer for PortableApps.com Format applications. You must follow the PortableApps.com Format Specification. Read it for more details (license is there, please read the spec properly).

I am a Christian and a developer and moderator here.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

John T. Haller's picture

No changes can be made to the PortableApps.com Installer itself or the code it generates. It's a single, standardized installer that is used for all installers of portable apps, commercial - freeware - open source, done by portableapps.com or by the publishers. This makes it easy and consistent for end users.

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

First off, congratulations on the release of this all important tool. I'm sure I speak for a vast majority of the community, when I say, "Very Well Done!!!"

You may wish to call this application by a different name, as to not confuse the "standard" user of PortableApps, those who aren't that development savvy.

Some suggestions are below:

PortableApp Install Architect
PortableApp Installation Architect
PortableApp Package Architect
PortableApp Packaging Architect
PortableApp Program Architect
PortableApp Install Builder
PortableApp Installation Builder
PortableApp Package Builder
PortableApp Packaging Builder
PortableApp Program Builder
PortableApp Install Constructor
PortableApp Installation Constructor
PortableApp Package Constructor
PortableApp Packaging Constructor
PortableApp Program Constructor
PortableApp Install Crafter
PortableApp Installation Crafter
PortableApp Package Crafter
PortableApp Packaging Crafter
PortableApp Program Crafter
PortableApp Install Creator
PortableApp Installation Creator
PortableApp Package Creator
PortableApp Packaging Creator
PortableApp Program Creator
PortableApp Install Designer
PortableApp Installation Designer
PortableApp Package Designer
PortableApp Packaging Designer
PortableApp Program Designer
PortableApp Install Maker
PortableApp Installation Maker
PortableApp Package Maker
PortableApp Packaging Maker
PortableApp Program Maker
PortableApp Install Producer
PortableApp Installation Producer
PortableApp Package Producer
PortableApp Packaging Producer
PortableApp Program Producer

Or similar.

The aforementioned names detail the function of this utility, and thereby can remove the confusion that the original name created.

Warmest Regards on the release of this tool,




Chris Morgan's picture

Currently it is just the PortableApps.com Installer. When I get time though I'm intending to build into it tighter strictness on following the PortableApps.com Format, and the ability to create a base application's directory/file structure automatically, and things like that. Then the whole package may well be renamed to the PortableApps.com Packager or similar (we'll see though).

I am a Christian and a developer and moderator here.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

Firstly, this is a great utility.

I am trying to get this working as part of an automated build process. It works fine running the PortableApps Installer GUI.

Is there a way to call it from a batch file? or am I barking up the wrong tree? Should I be automating NSIS directly?

John T. Haller's picture

Just call PortableApps.comInstaller.exe and pass it the path to the app you want to compile. You pass it X:\PathToApp\AppNamePortable and it will compile to X:\PathToApp\AppNamePortable_X.Y.paf.exe.

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

Sometimes the answer to to obvious. Thank you.