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Cross Platform CD Burning


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This subject seems to arise frequently and can, indeed, be frustrating. It was suggested that I Post this in this area - so here it is for what it's worth.

I realize that it has been a number of days since this topic was fist posted. However, for what it's worth, here is how I take care of the problem. I have several solutions that have been developed cross platform and all are placed on one CD for distribution.

First: I suggest the purchase of a good "Installation" software package. I use "VISE" and find it to be excellent. It is a little pricey, so you might want to look around at little. Once you have the "installation" software installed and "mastered",(that can take a little time)you are ready to begin.

1. Use Filemaker Developer to produce a run-time solution

2. Make certain all needed folders such as "system" for PC and "Filemaker Extensions" etc. are included in your runtime folder.

3. Make an Installation program using the software you decided upon.

4. Test both platforms as you go.

5. To burn the CD, you must use a Mac and should probably have Roxio's Toast Titatium.

6. Transfer your PC Install program (the one you made for you solution) to a Zip or like disk. You must transfer it to the Mac.

7. Launch the Burning software (Toast) on the Mac.

8. Choose "Custom Hybrid"

9. Click on "Utilities" and choose 'Create Temporaty Partition'.

10. Drag you Mac Installation Icon (the one you produced with your Installation program) to the "Temporary Partition". You may want to name this Temporary Partition something such as "Install". Whatever you name it is what will show when the CD is placed into the Mac Computer.

11. Click on the button "Select Mac". A window will open. Select the "Temporary Partition" you created. You can make it Auto-start if you wish although I tend to not do this.

12. Now click on the button "Select ISO". (You will need to have your PC Installation Zip file opened and visible on the desktop).

13. Drag the Installation Exe. file to the Toast Window.

14. Click the "Record" button, etc.

This will burn your CD so that both programs are available, but only the Mac will show when opened withthe Mac and only the PC when opened with the PC.

Test on both platforms.

This is much easier than it may sound. The biggest problem is understanding and mastering the "Installation Software".

The Installation software suggested by others is certainly Ok. It just doesnt' do quite as professional a job and generally will not place an Alias on the Desktop or Apple Menu for a Mac nor a "shortcut" for a PC.

If you don't have those capabilities, be certain that you have an explanation with your CD as to what file must be chosen to open the software. It must always be the Exe file.

Hey - hope this has some value for you

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  • 3 weeks later...

Some addenda:

You'll need to create two runtime versions -- one on a Mac and one on Windows, making sure you use the same key for both. Once you've done that, however, you can create an updated runtime version on one platform (again using the same key), replace the .USR files in both versions with the new .USR files.

Aladdin DropStuff works as well, and it's a whale of a lot cheaper -- just make sure that, for whichever platform you don't use to compress the files, you have StuffitExpander included on the CD (I use a Mac, so I got StuffitExpander for Windows, and it goes on the Windows side of the CD).

The need for an installer isn't so great with Mac, the problem is with Windows. Any files downloaded to a Windows machine from a CD are automatically Read-Only. There are only two ways to fix that. One is to go into the Properties of each downloaded file and uncheck the "Read-Only" box. The other is to use an installer. (On a Mac, files downloaded from a CD are only read-only if they were that way before writing them to the CD -- a fact the folks a Microsoft don't seem to know or understand. I know, I've spoken to them.)

I've found that I can create an alias (for Mac) and a shortcut (for Windows) and put them outside the folder containing all the solution files. That makes it easier for users to open the solution once it's installed.

That's all I can think of for now.



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