Distributing VFP 8

Versions 3, 5, and 6 of Visual FoxPro had the Setup Wizard to help us distribute applications. This tool had its limitations and Microsoft have now given us a cut-down version of InstallShield Express instead. This is much more powerful but it can be just tto much for a simple job.


InstallShield leads you through a number of pages like this one. Some ask for a lot of detail, others aren't relevant to a simple install, still more aren't available in this Limited Edition of InstallShield. Regardless of this you have to fight through every page so preparing a distribution set can be a long process. The effort is worthwhile for a commercial distribution because InstallShield creates a very good impression with the customer. It's hard work though if you're just trying to get FoxPro running on another local PC and you might find it easier to just copy the relevant DLLs across.

Visual FoxPro Help says that the following DLLs are required:

  • vfp8r.dll
  • vfp8t.dll
  • vfp8renu.dll - this is for the English distribution

All these are in c:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\vfp\.

You'll also need:

  • msvcr70.dll from the Windows System32 folder
  • GDIPlus.dll from the same folder as vfp8r.dll

If you're using XML you'll also need these three from System32:

  • msxml3.dll
  • msxml3a.dll
  • msxml3r.dll

Or perhaps these for VFP 8:

  • msxml4.dll
  • msxml4a.dll
  • msxml4r.dll

It might take a bit of experimentation to find the exact mix of files that your application needs but for a quick-and-dirty install, all you have to do is just drop these files into the same folder as your VFP8 executable.