[erlang-questions] FYI: Rewriting Playdar: C++ to Erlang, massive savings

Robert Raschke rtrlists@REDACTED
Fri Oct 23 14:59:26 CEST 2009

Lovely summary of the little gotchas when trying to create your own
standalone packaged Erlang app for Windows. Thank you for sending
this, Antoine.


On 10/23/09, Antoine Koener <antoine.koener@REDACTED> wrote:
>> "...We’ll put together a Windows installer soon that’ll probably be around
>> the same size. A 10MB download
>> isn’t so bad nowadays, and I expect we can optimize the packaging process
>> some more. Linux users will get
>> a package that depends on the erlang VM in their package manager. Seems
>> like shipping Erlang apps to the
>> desktop isn’t so hard after all."
> Thanks, interesting read
> I'm now building a windows installer to deploy some erlang application, and
> here's problems that takes a lot of time
> to fix.
>  Erlang for windows (R13B) needs some versions of the VC++ 2005 Runtime.
> (msvcr80.dll)
> Unfortunately the only way the find which one is to read the last part of
> the file "erl.exe" for example and extract information related to its
> "manifest".
> There you will find that you need the VC++ 2005-SP1 runtime.
> (And I think that with R12B this was not the case)
> The crypto_drv.dll needs the openssl "ssleay32.dll" to be installed. If it's
> not the case you won't be able to use anything
> related to crypto... And thanks to windows dll Hell problem, you need to put
> this dll in \windows\system32 [ SystemFolder ],
> making the package uninstallation not really "nice" because you may remove
> this file, breaking other apps...
>  Erlsrv is not really efficient, since your service may no longer be in
> place but still in the erlsrv registry key, you won't be able
> to reinstall it. Windows XP comes with tools like 'sc' that is able to set
> and configure a service.
> Erlsrv with "cmd.exe loves to break your double quotes" is absolutely not
> convenient.
> (I know that there's a new version of it, I didn't tested it for the moment,
> so maybe this part is no longer valid)
> There's two "bin" directories, which one is the "one" ?
> Same question with erl.ini.
> erl.ini: should contains good directory names but you can't use the single
> '\' because your path will not be valid :(
> While using the NSIS installer version is nice to install erlang for testing
> purpose, massively deploying it, is not possible using
> what windows admins are used to i.e. group policy and .msi files. (providing
> silent or "unattended" deployments)
> I'm using makemsi[1] to build a .msi package to deploy my windows app, while
> difficult to use, it works almost flawlessly.
> I'll be glad to share my experience with anyone.
> Finally my point is that under windows Erlang is difficult to repackage.
> May be we should take time to make it completely autonomous ? ( including
> every dependencies needed )
> Then you may say, what about dependencies upgrades ?  ( openssl
> vulnerability or else )
> I will say that I've no good answers to this question :p
> I'm not pushing for massive adoption of Erlang but I think that if anyone is
> able to repackage its erlang app for windows and
> making it full automatic deployment compatible, erlang and erlang based apps
> may spread a lot quicker...
> [1] http://dennisbareis.com/makemsi.htm

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