Skip to main content

Stupid Developer Mistakes: Where does that product name came from?

While I have used a variety of installers in the past, and am eagerly looking forward to switching all my installs over to Wix , I have one older application that used Setup Generator Pro. It was handy and it worked for the time. Unfortunately, I kept on using it to do upgrades and every now and then when the application would crash, it would display the older version # of the application (Your Application 2.04 has crashed - even though I was now up to version 3.5!)

At first I thought - it must be something to do with the Windows installer - it must have 2.04 somewhere in its database and I've got to change it. After all, how else would Windows know what version the application was? (don't answer yet!)

So I looked. and looked. and looked. Couldn't find it anywhere.

And so, the other day I was at my wit's end, trying to figure it out and I started to post it on one of the MSDN forums.

And then it hit me. Like a ton of bricks. Like someone coming over my head and whacking me saying "why didn't you look there first?"

In the FoxPro Project Manager, under Build , under the Version, I took a peek at what I had written for product name. Sure enough, it was "My Application 2.04".

Rule #5206: Never, EVER, put a version # into the product name box. It says Product Name - not Name and Version. You have a VERSION field for that. (and you can easily pull it all out). If only I had been smart and used AGETFILEVERSION( ) to look for it - I would have seen it right away. If you've never used AGETFILEVERSION( ), it's useful not just for FoxPro executables but other applications and DLLs as well. The array is easily populated with:
AGETFILEVERSION(la, "MyAPP.EXE")
And then, it's:
1 - Comments
2 - Company Name
3 - File Description
4 - File Version (this is the one place where you should have your version information)
5 - Internal Name
6 - Legal Copyright
7 - Legal Trademarks
8 - Original Filename
9 - Private Build
10 - Product Name
11 - Product Version (same as 4)
12 - Special Build (empty)
13 - OLE Self Registration
14 - Language
15 - Translation Code

What's interesting here is that with the Version dialog, you can only fill in values 1,2,3,4,6,7,10.

Also, a quick tip: even if you build APPs, build your APP as an EXE and then rename it. The version information will still be there.

Thankfully, I work in a home office where my embarassment can only be shared with those I choose to blog to. Oh yeah, that's everyone. But I chose to blog it because when you're at your wit's end, looking for a solution - start at the beginning or the project.

Argh!

Comments

Rick Schummer said…
Cool tip on the rename if the EXE to APP file. I would never have guessed this works.

Popular posts from this blog

Programmers vs. Developers vs. Architects

I received an email this morning from Brandon Savage's newsletter. Brandon's a PHP guru (works at Mozilla) but his newsletter and books have some great overall perspectives for developers of all languages. However, this last one (What's the difference between developers and architects?) kind of rubs me the wrong way. Either that, or I've just missed the natural inflation of job descriptions. (maybe, it's like the change in terminology between Garbage man and Waste Engineer or Secretary and Office Administrator)

So maybe it's just me - but I think there's still a big difference between Programmer, Developer and then of course, architect. The key thing here is that every role has a different perspective and every one of those perspectives has value. The original MSF create roles like Product Manager, Program Manager, Developer, Tester, etc - so every concept may pigeon hole people into different roles. But the statements Brandon makes are often distinctions I…

Security in Windows 10

http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/bitwise/2015/08/windows_10_privacy_problems_here_s_how_bad_they_are_and_how_to_plug_them.single.html

 discusses some Windows 10 privacy settings and their implications.

"Finally, we will access, disclose and preserve personal data, including your content (such as the content of your emails, other private communications or files in private folders), when we have a good faith belief that doing so is necessary." "In other words, Microsoft won't treat your local data with any more privacy than it treats your data on its servers and may upload your local data to its servers arbitrarily"
I did a quick install on a VM choosing the Express settings. When I fully deploy this on a real workstation, I will likely choose to wade through all of the individual pages, as David recommends.

Of course, losing one's privacy is nothing new - it's happening all over the place (despite Santa Ana's police force's lawsu…

AppleSoft

I'm not TRYING to be "fanboy-flame bait" but what I saw yesterday was a typical "Do it this way, now do it this way and then we'll go back to this way" all over again.... a move similar to what Microsoft does to developers on an ongoing basis.

Remember the first iPhone? Smooth and curved, at least as far as it could be back then. I still pull out my 3G and can see the curves on it.

Then the 4 came out and "boxy" was all the rage. Everything should be "tight with corners"

Now iPhone 6.... smooth and curvy is back. Granted I don't have the actual device yet, but that's the message.

Guess that means the iPhone 8 will be back to boxy.

And honestly, Apple Watch is not worth "one more thing" --- especially when everyone knows it's going to be shown. "One more thing" would be something no one saw coming.  The device itself ? Very interesting and yes, definitely lots of potential but "one more thing" wor…