The following information comes from my experience with the product since 2001. Some of what I say will be be dated.
The are 14 versions. The simplest, InstallAnywhere standadard costs . It is a snap to use. It creates a *.exe for windows and a *.bin script for Unix (processor independent! clever eh?), and a Mac version too if your program can run under the Mac’s Java. The installer adds the program to the menu with an icon. The problems with the free version include:
I have exchanged many emails and phone calls with the InstallAnywhere people. I hope they follow my advice and make the free InstallAnywhereNow more foolproof for the end user, but limit it to tiny apps. Instead they dropped the product.
Unfortunately version 4 still gaves you no way to control which VM your app gets connected to. Its downloads are about 200K bigger than version 3.5, a little over a megabyte of overhead on each download, exclusive of the VM. The main new feature of version 4 is the ability to include a jar file that is automatically expanded as part of the install. InstallAnywhereNow does not have a way of pre-installing the generic installer once, the way you can with Web Start which would remove that overhead. The advantage is the downloads are totally self-contained.
version 5 has the power update feature similar to JNLP (Java Network Launching Protocol) for automatically installing upgrades to your customers. The major enhancement in the use of XML (extensible Markup Language) files to control the installer. This product is now defunct.
I tested version 6.1. It is in some ways even worse than earlier versions.
ZeroG has acknowledged the problem and has logged a fix as a feature request.
install.exe LAX_VM C:\jre\bin\java.exe
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