I just stumbled onto a link on MSDN to download a tool called the Microsoft Component Installer Software Development Kit. This tool aims to make it easier for setup developers to bootstrap and install common Microsoft components, including the following:
- MDAC 2.8
- .NET Framework 1.1 (and 1.1 SP1 and KB886903)
- DirectX 9.0c
- Windows Installer 2.0 and 3.1
I downloaded it and took a look and it seems pretty straightforward to use, and it is INI-driven so you can enable or disable bootstrapping to only target the components you need in your scenarios. I haven't actually tried to use it yet though, so I'm curious if anyone out there has tried this tool yet for your setup scenarios. If so, please post a comment and let me know what you think - is this tool useful? Does it address some/all/any of your scenarios? Are there big functional holes that make it not feasible in your scenarios?