Microsoft Windows Installer, sometimes referred to simply as Windows Installer, provides program management functions for Windows systems. This includes installation, as the name indicates, along with managing upgrades and handles uninstalling software as needed.
Windows Installer is not commonly a program installed on a user’s computer. Instead, the files are included as a component of Microsoft and third party software. Windows Installer performs the installation function for any new software. It also automates the process of uninstalling software.
Installer offers some other functions that many software developers find attractive. Some use the product to advertise their software products. Installer then facilitates the installation of the software package if the user chooses to purchase the product. Microsoft Windows Installer can also be configured to install software on demand rather than at the time of purchase. This is useful for business organizations that may have purchased a product for a number of computers and allow users to install the software as needed.
Microsoft Windows Installer works with the Windows configuration for security. Generally, only someone with administrator access to the computer can install software using Installer.
Installer also allows the developer to include information such license agreements and special instructions with the software.
Microsoft Windows Installer is included with each update and release of the operating system. The files necessary for each installation are included with the software package distribution. While Microsoft encourages the use of Windows Installer by all software distributers, some choose to use their own installation procedures. Uninstalling these software products may be more difficult.