PortableApps.com Format 1.0

John T. Haller's picture
Submitted by John T. Haller on November 24, 2009 - 4:06pm

logoPortableApps.com is proud to announce that the PortableApps.com Format Specification 1.0 has now been published. This release marks the culmination of over a year of work with dozens of developers to create the world's first open portable software format. The updated PortableApps.com Format Specification is now available for outside developers to use and can be used freely with free open source and freeware applications. Commercial use is available by contacting PortableApps.com.

Read on for more details...

PortableApps.com Format

PortableApps.com Format is a simple specification that governs the file and directory layout as well as operating behavior of portable apps. File are distributed as easy-to-use .paf.exe™ installer files. The full details on the format are available in the PortableApps.com Development Resources section.

PortableApps.com Installer 1.0

Installer ScreenshotApplications in PortableApps.com Format are packaged by way of the PortableApps.com Installer. 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 Format?

This update finalizes the specification for 1.0. Minor additions include the ability for an application to advertise its need of Java Portable or the .NET Framework on the local PC to the PortableApps.com Platform.

The 1.0 update of the PortableApps.com Installer allows software publishers to package their apps using our popular tools. Open source projects can use our installer (and all source is included and licensed under the GPL) and release their own PAF files. Freeware publishers can also use our installer with no special permission. Commercial publishers can contact us for permission.

Get Your Software on PortableApps.com

Once you have your software packaged in PortableApps.com Format, it's eligible for listing on PortableApps.com and our millions of users and visitors. Please contact us for details.

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.


The new PortableApps.com Format is available in the PortableApps.com Development Section. Read it today!

Story Topic:


OliverK's picture

I believe we shouldn't have to, but it would be good for you to.
They'll probably need to be updated when you hit pre-release anyway.

Too many lonely hearts in the real world
Too many bridges you can burn
Too many tables you can't turn
Don't wanna live my life in the real world

John T. Haller's picture

If you're in any current format within the last few months (basically as long as you have the AppID in appinfo.ini and the PNG icons in there) it'll update it for you Smile

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

so I don't need UsesDotNet=True any more?

"It's just an online installer. It's not going to mug you.", JTH
"The shell is the key to unlock Linux's greatest advantages."

Chris Morgan's picture

Just UsesDotNetVersion=N.N

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

LOGAN-Portable's picture

Thanks man!

John, what about in the future the platform contains the installer and launcher and for some apps only feeds a very small file containing just icons and parameters. Then perhaps all apps can use one single launcher/installer/updater and those are always up to the latest versions. Would that be an innovative idea to think about?


That's actually the idea behind Chris's PortableApps.com Launcher; you should be able to find it in Beta Testing somewhere. It's pretty neat, you just edit a single .ini file that determines what registry keys the app users, appdata folders, etc. You don't even need to recompile the launcher afterwards.

I thought Format 1.0 was released at the same time Installer 1.0 was? At least I remember looking at the spec right after the Installer came out and it said "PortableApps.com Format 1.0" at the top of the page...

Also, I didn't know a filename extension (".paf.exe™") could be trademarked.

Chris Morgan's picture

Think of what came with 1.0 as the Format 1.0 draft. As far as I know, there was only one modification after the release of 1.0, the removal of the superfluous [Dependencies]:UsesDotNet boolean.

As for trademarks, almost anything can be trademarked... .paf.exe is definitely a distinguishing thing of PortableApps.com and as such is fine for trademarking.

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

Is standart for create portableapp?

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.