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THE INSTALLER

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Ben
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#31

Posted 16 April 2006 - 10:24 AM

I've updated the first post of this topic after going through and compiling a full list of features. If I've missed any, post here and let me know.

Ben
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#32

Posted 19 April 2006 - 02:43 AM

QUOTE (CTM @ Feb 9 2006, 08:15)
FEATURES OF THE NEW INSTALLER:


The current proposals for the v6 installer include:
  • An Inno-Setup engine
  • A manual/custom install option - you can select the folders that are copied during installation, and install single files (useful for those who forget to back-up before modding)
  • Web installation as well as full installer download options
  • A new HTML Readme - copy the source into a text file, and save it as Readme.html (so it can be included with the installer download package)
  • An Internet Shortcut to the LC forum
  • An option to install GTA3 audio from a hard-drive location as well as from the GTA3 CD - if GTA3 audio is not installed, then have the installer copy the 2 files from here into their correct locations instead of the default files already there (is this even possible?)
  • Hammer83's Audio Blanking Program - needs to be written in to the installer to run at some stage (it blanks out all unused VC audio files, thus saving space)
NOTE - When installing the GTA3 audio, the installer shouldn't double the file extension of some of the files (see here -eg- police.mp3 becomes police.mp3.mp3, etc. - this should not happen).

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


--original post--
Work on Test 6 is well underway, and Craig wants a new installer for it.

The installer that I created for the Test 5 branch was an abomination, and I apologise for that. It was like a thin piece of string that bundled the individual installation steps together - it worked, but if one part of the bundle failed, the string snapped. That's not the way an installer should work; it's the first thing that a prospective end user will see, so it needs to be dependable.

I want to rewrite the entire thing from scratch for Test 6; hopefully I'll complete it in time. The interface will largely be the same, but it'll be vastly different behind the scenes.

The UI, however, should partly be the work of the community. I want to know what you want to see in the new installer - what should be changed, what should be left the same, and what could be added to make the installation a more enjoyable experience. Here is some stuff that I thought about while posting this thread:
  • Get it working fully on Win98 and WinME. The old installer had some problems with decompressing the archive. This won't happen in Test 6.
  • Pull out all of the stops to compress the installation archive as much as possible. In the last release (Test 5b), the archive was 102MB. That's a massive hassle to download if you're stuck on 56K, and I know at least one of the led-bys of this very forum is still on dialup. My aim is to get the archive compressed to around 80MB. Right now I'm using a highly-compressed 7-Zip archive; please post any known techniques that are better.
  • Add the option to install GTA3 audio from the hard drive.
I really want to hear from you other guys too; after all, I'm making this for you, so your input is far more important. What else would you like to see in the new installer?

Ok, just a minor update to the first post - something that I found in the audio topic that was previously overlooked wink.gif .

CTM - do you think you could add it?

PS - I underlined it in the quote so that it stands out, but it's not underlined in the first post smile.gif .

MegaVovaN
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#33

Posted 21 April 2006 - 11:59 AM

Hi all, I got a question: how are you gonna do web install? Only if you use different installer, Inno Setup does not support such feature:

http://jrsoftware.or....php#webinstall

Konstantinos
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#34

Posted 21 April 2006 - 06:29 PM

@MegaVovaN:
I don't think the option of web install was ever seriously considered. Then again, I may be wrong.

Anyway, any news from CTM? It's been 2 months since his last post.

Craig Kostelecky
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#35

Posted 21 April 2006 - 07:42 PM

I see him on his AIM account periodically, but I haven't had the chance to talk to him yet.

Ben
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#36

Posted 24 April 2006 - 06:03 AM Edited by benisablink182fan, 24 April 2006 - 08:24 AM.

Ok, so I've had a play around with Craig's audio blanking tool, and added it to mine. I've also added Nullpointer's sfx importer as part of a package that I'd like to see included as an option in the installer. It's just a bat file which replaces all the unused audio in your LC\audio folder with blank wavs/mp3s (Craig's tool) and then replaces all of the wavs in the sfx archive with blanks and recompiles it.

The package can be downloaded here - to try it out, make a back-up of your LC\audio folder first!

Then, extract everything from the rar into the folder, and run the bat file. The process will take some time (up to, and maybe even more than half an hour 10 mins), but it should work. It deletes all of the files you copied except itself (the bat file - which you can delete once it's done).

Basically, for this to be incorporated into the installer, all it needs to do is add all of these files to your LC\audio folder, run the bat file, and then remove the bat file automatically once it's complete - that shouldn't be too hard to encode I'd imagine wink.gif .

This overall will save you about 800MB icon14.gif .

I've added this to the first post as well smile.gif .

EDIT - Massive oversight on my part (it doesn't remove all of the blank sfx wavs from the LC\audio folder). I know how to fix it, so I'll get to work on it. Link will be the same - give it a few hours wink.gif .

EDIT 2 - Nevermind, fixed and re-uploaded icon14.gif .

EDIT 3 - Another minor oversight in the package - I included the GTA3 sfx.inf instead of the VC one, so it would only recompile the sfx up to 3031 instead of 9940 - fixed and re-uploaded icon14.gif .

Also, I tested it out and it works fairly efficiently - it only took me about 10mins to complete. And it saves around 800MB of HD space overall icon14.gif .

SupSuper
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#37

Posted 26 April 2006 - 06:45 PM Edited by SupSuper, 26 April 2006 - 08:16 PM.

If you need help with the new installer, I have experience with both NSIS and Inno.

And if you're so worried about filesize, you could try compressing all the audio to OGG and then put it back in its original format with the installer.

Ben
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#38

Posted 26 April 2006 - 11:37 PM Edited by benisablink182fan, 27 April 2006 - 06:41 AM.

I don't really think that's the way to go - ~100MB isn't too bad, even for dial-up. Especially not since the advent of download managers allowing pause and resume of downloads icon14.gif .

Besides, that'd add time to the installation process - people already whinge that it can take 30mins to install.

But yeah, CTM might need some help with the installer. I think we're going with Inno because it's slightly easier to code than NSIS, but CTM would have to confirm that. Send him a PM and I'll email him later to get a progress update smile.gif .

EDIT - actually, I just realised a BIG error in the audio blanker tool. It blanks out the sfx in the audio folder, but that's automatically replaced by the LC sfx.

So, I'm thinking it might be more appropriate to simply delete the GTA3 sfx (from your audioLC folder) - tell the installer to do that, and then just create blank mp3s/wavs in the audio folder. Any thoughts?

SupSuper
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#39

Posted 27 April 2006 - 07:28 PM

It was just a suggestion. And personally I prefer NSIS since it's got a nicer UI, easier to customize, more popular, bigger community, lots of plugins, translations, forums, etc. IMHO

Also, I tried using your Audio Blanker after having used Craig's tool and ended up with hardly any sound effects and game crashed on cutscenes. Reinstalled it all, used your Audio Blanker again and the game stopped recognizing the Vice City CD. So I think I'll stick to having useless space being wasted. tounge.gif

Ben
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#40

Posted 28 April 2006 - 12:02 AM

lol, thanks for the feedback. It's probably just a better option to use Craig's blanker - I realised after (as I said in my edit), that mine blanks out all the LC sfx suicidal.gif ! Not to worry - I'll just fix the first post up again icon14.gif .

Ben
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#41

Posted 22 May 2006 - 07:30 AM

Ok, I've been doing some thinking about the new installer - I think that if we can get it right with the next release, we can just use the same source for all future releases (with only some minor tweakage), rather than having to start again.

This is only minor, and shouldn't be too hard to implement. Carrying on a similar line to Craig's audio blanker, I want to try and tidy up the LC directory somewhat.

After a small amount of testing, I've discovered that the following can be removed with no effect on game-play (this is all just VC stuff that isn't applicable to LC):
Files:
data\maps\map0.dat
data\maps\map1.dat
data\maps\map2.dat
data\maps\map3.dat
data\maps\map4.dat
data\maps\map5.dat
data\maps\map6.dat
data\maps\map7.dat
data\maps\map8.dat

Folders (within each folder are the following 3 files which are to be removed also - xxx.col, xxx.ide and xxx.ipl, where xxx is the name of the folder. I'm assuming that if you remove the folder, the files inside will be gone too tounge.gif ):
data\maps\airport
data\maps\airportN
data\maps\bank
data\maps\bar
data\maps\bridge
data\maps\cisland
data\maps\club
data\maps\concerth
data\maps\docks
data\maps\downtown
data\maps\downtows
data\maps\generic
data\maps\golf
data\maps\haiti
data\maps\haitiN
data\maps\hotel
data\maps\islandsf
data\maps\lawyers
data\maps\littleha
data\maps\mall
data\maps\mansion
data\maps\nbeach
data\maps\nbeachbt
data\maps\nbeachw
data\maps\oceandn
data\maps\oceandrv
data\maps\stadint
data\maps\starisl
data\maps\stripclb
data\maps\washintn
data\maps\washints
data\maps\yacht

If the installer can be written to remove those files from the directory the user chooses to install LC into, it will save space and make the LC directory neater (and easier to mod for less experienced people).

I'm going to look further into this over the coming weeks to see if there are other files which can be removed as well. For now though, I've added this to the first post.

Any thoughts, suggestions, etc.?

PS - Actually, before you dive in with thoughts, suggestions, etc., please make sure you've got v6test3 , otherwise you'll find that a lot of unused VC files have already been removed (as I did wink.gif !).

Dylan2112
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#42

Posted 28 May 2006 - 05:26 PM

sorry if i missed this but when are you expecting this new installer? i mean what month?

Craig Kostelecky
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#43

Posted 28 May 2006 - 06:18 PM

I've been trying to get in contact with CTM a little bit in the past few days (as I've started working on the mod again) but I have not received any response yet. I hope we can get together soon to improve on his v5 installer. No promises on when though.

Dwayne Phoenix
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#44

Posted 04 June 2006 - 07:46 PM

I don't know if this has been mentioned before, but the installer just DOESN'T work! sneaky2.gif

Status: Decompressing installation archive
[ _______________________ ]

Overall Install ation propgress
[ |_|_|_|_|_______________ ]


It gets to 4 bars, then just stops!
I've left it for almost an hour, and nothing has happened!

What should I do?!

SteaVor
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#45

Posted 04 June 2006 - 07:49 PM Edited by SteaVor, 04 June 2006 - 07:52 PM.

Try to deactivate your antivirus software.
Try to install manually as described in the first post of the FAQ topic.

Ben
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#46

Posted 02 September 2006 - 11:21 PM

G'day all smile.gif . First off I want to apologise on behalf of the team for not having had an installer recently. I'm afraid though, that it's going to be a while yet before we do have one confused.gif .

Anyway, Craig has been trying to contact CTM, although he's lack of activity suggests that he's probably busy with RealLife™ at the moment, and therefore *MIGHTN'T* have the time to dedicate to making a new installer. I've also tried to contact nsane, as he expressed some interest in helping out a while ago, although he hasn't been online since before I PM'ed him.

So, what I'm wondering is if anyone is interested in making the new installer. The only stipulations at this stage is that it is compatible for everyone, bug-free, runs smoothly, and includes the features outlined in the first post (I can go into more detail regarding those features if need be). Furthermore, this installer will form the foundations for all future installers, so ideally we want to get it right this time wink.gif .

If you have the know-how to whip up something like this and the time to dedicate to it, please post here smile.gif .

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#47

Posted 18 September 2006 - 07:19 AM

sure, i can write you guys an installer, just give me a few days to free up some time and i'll get right on it wink.gif

one things tho, i dunno about an online installer. altho inno does have a download dll it's kind of a pain to work with (never even got it working to be honest). but everything else should be no problem...

Ben
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#48

Posted 18 September 2006 - 07:31 AM

Sure, no problems. I look forward to seeing what you can come up with - it'll be great to finally have an installer so we can get a new major release out smile.gif .

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#49

Posted 22 September 2006 - 02:27 AM

ok, quick test...

http://files.nsanepr...a_copy_test.exe (left click - has referal checks)

just let me know if it properly detects your VICE CITY folder and copies it to another LC folder. i'm try to automate the entire task so you just need VC installed and you're good to go cool.gif

i'd recomend renaming your current LC folder to something like "backup" before running it, or it might overwrite yours if you're using the same name it does!



btw, what files exactly are needed from the audio folder when copying the VC folder? i could speed that part up by ignoring the ones that get overwritten by LC files...

GTAThomas
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#50

Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:11 AM

That's quite the load of work you're putting on yourself.

MegaVovaN
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#51

Posted 22 September 2006 - 12:14 PM

QUOTE (nsane @ Sep 21 2006, 20:27)
ok, quick test...

http://files.nsanepr...a_copy_test.exe (left click - has referal checks)

just let me know if it properly detects your VICE CITY folder and copies it to another LC folder. i'm try to automate the entire task so you just need VC installed and you're good to go cool.gif

i'd recomend renaming your current LC folder to something like "backup" before running it, or it might overwrite yours if you're using the same name it does!



btw, what files exactly are needed from the audio folder when copying the VC folder? i could speed that part up by ignoring the ones that get overwritten by LC files...

works for me!

it found my game at D:\GTA VC Clean

D is my games Hard Drive

Ben
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#52

Posted 23 September 2006 - 02:02 AM

None of the VC audio files (those in the "Audio" folder) are overwritten - all of LC's custom files are placed in the "audioLC" folder, so there's nothing to worry about from that perspective.

The only exceptions are SFX.RAW and SFX.SDT. However, they NEED to be copied over because of the way Nullpointer's Tool updates them. The map files/folders at the top of this page (in my post - there's a link in the first post too) can be left out in the copying process though smile.gif .

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#53

Posted 28 September 2006 - 01:39 PM

ok, i think i pretty got everything now, so here's test #1 for the installer...

DOWNLOAD (93.16 MB) cool.gif

Improvements:
- Smaller, obviously
- Creates a start menu folder
- Options to create desktop and quicklaunch icons
- Auto rebuilds SFX archive if LC audio is chosen
- Auto sets the loader's INI file for VC and LC radio
- Auto blanks unused VC audio (if chosen)
- Auto cleans the maps folder
- Auto copies your VC folder and makes a LC folder
- Functional uninstall
- Other minor stuff...

To-do list:
- GTA3 Radio and Cutscene audio (need more info, see below, before i can do that)
- oh, and i can easily rename the TXD and GXT files for people using the VC radio (left as it was tho, as requested in the first post)


<gta3 owners only>

could someone export its uninstall registry key and pass it my way? don't have a copy myself and it's an easy way to auto-detect program locations wink.gif

the key should be located in:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall

the VC uninstall key, for example: {4B35F00C-E63D-40DC-9839-DF15A33EAC46}

remember, export to a .reg file and pass it my way. i do need the value names too ya know tounge.gif

fuhq2mofo[AT]gmail[DOT]com

</gta3 owners only>

Craig Kostelecky
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#54

Posted 29 September 2006 - 04:09 AM

I don't know when I can get a chance to test this, as I have another programming project to do (and another surgery coming up). But it looks like you've gotten the major features. And the filesize is under 100 MB. icon14.gif

I recently just heard from CTM as well. And he's been working on a new version of his installer. Like I said I won't have time to test either version anytime soon, but hopefully if your installer is not complete, you two can work together to improve it. Or maybe his version is closer to completion. I don't have a personal preferrence as to who makes the installer, but I do want the best work that I can get.

MegaVovaN
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#55

Posted 29 September 2006 - 11:53 AM

QUOTE (nsane @ Sep 28 2006, 07:39)
ok, i think i pretty got everything now, so here's test #1 for the installer...

DOWNLOAD (93.16 MB) cool.gif

Improvements:
- Smaller, obviously
- Creates a start menu folder
- Options to create desktop and quicklaunch icons
- Auto rebuilds SFX archive if LC audio is chosen
- Auto sets the loader's INI file for VC and LC radio
- Auto blanks unused VC audio (if chosen)
- Auto cleans the maps folder
- Auto copies your VC folder and makes a LC folder
- Functional uninstall
- Other minor stuff...

To-do list:
- GTA3 Radio and Cutscene audio (need more info, see below, before i can do that)
- oh, and i can easily rename the TXD and GXT files for people using the VC radio (left as it was tho, as requested in the first post)


<gta3 owners only>

could someone export its uninstall registry key and pass it my way? don't have a copy myself and it's an easy way to auto-detect program locations wink.gif

the key should be located in:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall

the VC uninstall key, for example: {4B35F00C-E63D-40DC-9839-DF15A33EAC46}

remember, export to a .reg file and pass it my way. i do need the value names too ya know tounge.gif

fuhq2mofo[AT]gmail[DOT]com

</gta3 owners only>

I downloaded this, it installed flawlessly! Did not try to launch the game though - my VC CD is somewhere...

I really like how it copies game for me and deletes extra files!

As for GTA 3 resistry key, I installed it, but I have like 20 keys in that directory with cryptic names sad.gif How do I know which one is GTA3?

CTM
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#56

Posted 29 September 2006 - 12:24 PM

First off, without delay: I apologise immensely for my absence over the last few months. Real life is the worst virus you can catch; sitting exams and starting university have completely destroyed my online time. confused.gif

However, that's all over and sorted now. I start university properly on Monday, which has given me a couple of weeks to work on my part of the GTA:LC project. I see that nsane has very kindly filled in the gap that I left, so I'm probably not needed any more, but regardless I've been working on a new installer (mainly to pass the time and to satisfy my curiosity in fixing some of the ridiculous bugs in the old installer). This is what I've come up with:
  • Written almost from scratch. This eliminated all of the old bugs.
  • Online. Compressed copies of the installation files are downloaded from any number of servers, then uncompressed, verified and installed as usual. The installer is more like 6MB than the previous 110MB, which means that more people can host both the installer and the files.
  • Fixed GUI. This means it doesn't stop responding and freeze inexplicably; it'll run nicely whatever it's doing.
  • Made more compatible with other versions of Windows. This is partly down to me finding a copy of VMWare Workstation through university because I can now test the installer on Win98/ME before it's even released. The new installer performs brilliantly on all versions of Windows above and including 98.
  • Stable. The old installer was fairly rough around the edges, mainly because there weren't many verification checks. This one is full of them: every situation is accounted for, and even if it does stop working for some reason, a debug log is dumped and the user is asked to report it back to us so I can fix any bugs that might have cropped up.
  • More flexible. "Manual installs" are possible if the user wants to download either the compressed or uncompressed files by themself and install from them rather than downloading from a mirror. You don't have to install GTA3 SFX or audio if you don't want to; the installer will adapt to that.
  • Fully documented. Every possible way of running the installer differently is logged in a readme file that ships with the installer.
  • Still customised to fit LC's needs. The options to install cutscene audio, radio stations, SFX etc. are still there and have been made more robust.

There are some other things, but they're minor and not really worth mentioning. I'm doing some final testing on the code I have at the moment to determine whether or not it's release-worthy; if anyone wants to take a look at it, I'll be more than happy to let you know when it's ready. smile.gif

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#57

Posted 29 September 2006 - 01:25 PM Edited by nsane, 01 October 2006 - 03:04 PM.

@CTM - now you got me feeling bad, making me feel like i'm underminding all your work. but, i guess, i could do the complete install while you handle it's online counterpart (if it came down to it). altho, if it were possible, i could use an stand-alone tool to copy the GTA3 audio from its CD (detecting the proper drive letter is turning out to be a pain on my end) :\

@MegaVovaN - the only way to tell for sure is to simply start at the top and scroll down 1 by 1 until you notice "GTA3" or something displayed in the pane on the right. like so, using VC as an example...

user posted image

CTM
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#58

Posted 29 September 2006 - 02:13 PM

QUOTE (nsane @ Sep 29 2006, 14:25)
@CTM - now you got me feeling bad, making me feel like i'm underminding all you (if it came down to it). altho, if it were possible, i could use an stand-alone tool to copy the GTA3 audio from its CD (detecting the proper drive letter is turning out to be a pain on my end) :\

No, not at all! You filled in and produced another installer when I had to disappear with no warning. Please don't feel bad, if anything this situation is my fault. sad.gif

Ben
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#59

Posted 01 October 2006 - 12:53 AM

@nsane - That sounds awesome! cookie.gif

I haven't tested it out, but from that list, it sounds as though you've got everything more than under control wink.gif . Excellent work smile.gif .

@CTM - That's fine. I contacted nsane because I wanted to keep the project rolling wink.gif . So I guess in a way it's my fault too tounge2.gif .

But yeah, your installer sounds excellent as well icon14.gif . I'm with Craig in thinking that you two should probably work together to see what you can come up with - some sort of super installer would be great tounge.gif !

Keep up the good work - hopefully I'll get around to testing out both of the installers in the near future...

banxter667
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#60

Posted 11 October 2006 - 02:57 AM Edited by banxter667, 11 October 2006 - 03:02 AM.

Two icon14.gif icon14.gif for nsane's installer, took it about 10 minutes total to swap out all the files and for me to start a new game (after the download that is, but that only took 5-10 minutes too). That's about 30 minutes quicker than it takes me to do by hand... and that's a good thing in my book.

Keep up the good work nsane, and thank you
(muchas gracias to Craig for pointing me at it too, I'd still be pulling my hair out trying to get that installed if he hadn't sent me the link to it...)




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