Why I dislike .config files


As you might know, you can’t xcopy-deploy a distributed application, unless you make your customers use the same computer and domain names, and possibly user names.

Now, if you can arrange for that – alright, type ESC-q and exit in your command prompt now.

So, we know setup is more than xcopy. And the .NET framework configuration environment is made up of several layers of XML-based config files.

Now I need to tweak some of them when installing an application or, worse, a plug-in for an existing application, say a Data Processing Extension for Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services.

And how much support do I find in the platform for making modifications to these files?

See? That’s what I don’t like.

But hey, it’s just XML! And I can use the installutil tweak that comes with the Visual Studio deployment projects!

Let’s just say, installers created this way are not among the most beautiful nor the most resilient.

The best you can do with them is run them thru dark to get a WiX based installer out of it.

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