Link to details about how to use new patch creation features in WiX v3.0

Peter Marcu posted a couple of items on his blog recently that I wanted to link to here so hopefully more folks will see them.  The first is a high-level description of new patching features that have been added to WiX v3.0 over the past few months.  You can find the post at  It briefly introduces the old and new ways to create patches using WiX.

The second is a really nice example of how to create a patch using the new features in WiX v3.0.  You can find this blog post at  To summarize Peter's post, the following are the steps that can be used to create your first patch:

  1. Create your initial product layout file/folder structure

  2. Create a new copy of the product layout (called an upgrade layout) with patched files included in it

  3. Create a WXS file that can be used to build an MSI for the product layout in steps 1 and 2 above

  4. Create a WXS file that can be used to build an MSP for the patch

  5. Build a .wixout and .msi file for the initial product layout using Candle and Light

  6. Build a .wixout (and optionally a .msi file) for the upgrade product layout using Candle and Light

  7. Create a .wixmst (transform) file for the differences between the 2 layouts using Torch

  8. Build a .msp (patch) file that will apply to the .msi file created in step 5 using Candle, Light and Pyro

If you are a setup developer interested in creating patches for your MSI-based installers, I encourage you to check out Peter's blog posts for more detailed information about how to use new features in WiX v3.0 to create patches.

<update date="7/17/2007"> Updated step 7 to indicate that the output file is a .wixmst file and not a standard Windows Installer .mst file </update>


Comments (4)
  1. Actually, in step 7 you create a wixmst, which is just a wixout for transforms. The extension doesn’t matter really, of course. A wixout is perfectly acceptable.

  2. Hi Heath – Good catch, that was a typo when I was summarizing Peter’s list of steps.  I’ve updated the text of my blog post with this to avoid confusion.

  3. Since my last update some changes have appeared in the steps needed to create a patch using Wix. The…

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