Installer Creation for MacOS, Windows and Linux?

I have a few questions here.

  1. What is a good installer package for the MacOS? I tried just putting my app into a DMG file and put it on my Google Drive. When I tested the download, it downloaded fine but when I tried to run the program, the Mac was alerting that it couldn’t run the program because the Mac could not check it for viruses and such. This is on the same system that the app is running fine where I created it. I’d like to have a nice packing tool (free or low cost) that can create everything needed to distribute an app but looks like many installers where the app shows up on the left and you simply drag it to the Applications folder on the right. I don’t want to pay premium price for that though.

  2. Free or low cost installer creator for Windows and also for Linux?

Hopefully, some feedback on how these tools are working out for you and your projects.

Thanks! :smiley:

Here are some tips that might help get you started:

UserGuide:Desktop App Deployment - Xojo Documentation

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Thanks Paul, I will check out the links in that part of the documentation.

The one thing I didn’t see there is anything that addresses the issue with Apple not being about to check for Malicious software.

Ok, sorry about this. I found the info about code signing. I can’t say I’m excited about paying $100 to join the developer option just for that. Anyway around that? I don’t mind getting an account to sign, would like avoid cost if possible.

Its not just code signing these days, its ‘notarisation’ too.
If you want to ship product, Apple want money. Even if your app is free.
There are things the recipient can do to open it anyway, but if you have more than one recipient, you will pay the $100 rather than have to keep explaining things.

Bute: On Windows, Smartscreen and virus checkers will fuss about unsigned installers too.
Getting a signing certificate for Windows installers is actually harder and more expensive.

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If you’re distributing only to people who trust you, they can right-click on the application bundle and select “Open”. They’ll be asked if they’re sure, but then the application will open and they won’t be nagged again. That is the hoop to jump through, to run an unsigned application.

For broader distribution, I don’t know of an alternative to an Apple dev certificate, for Mac.

Incidentally, AppWrapper and DMGCanvas, used together, are a great way to sign and create your installer. I am a very satisfied customer.


Oh Lord, dealing with Sectigo is slightly less fun than self-amputation. :slight_smile:

Yeah, anyway to get money :frowning:

I open unsigned apps when I trust the source it came from and it’s not that big of a deal. I do worry about the recipient not wanting to go through that even though you only do it the first time.

My antivirus on windows 7 alerts the first time, but finds it clean and then is fine. So far, Linux hasn’t been a problem in my testing.

Currently, my apps will be free. If at some point I decide to sell stuff I’ll spring for the developer options with Apple. I’ll see about Windows if it becomes an issue.

Thanks Everyone!

If you did not use the App Store, the price used to be $100 for 5 years. But as you know Apple is only a small company and therefore really desperately needs money, so in 2019, they made it $100 a year.

Not planning to use the Apple Store.

isn’t it deprecated nowadays ?

So the bottom line is you don’t need an installer for macOS, you need to be able to code-sign and notarise. AppWrapper will do both of those, but you need certificates for that which you can get if you are an Apple Developer. My app is free but I still need to be a Developer.


Yes, but a lot of people still use it and I want to make sure my apps run on it. :slight_smile:

Thanks. So here’s a question. If I had the certificate, signed an app and all was good, do the warnings start appearing for that app at a later date if I don’t get a new cert a few years down the road?

No, the signature will remain valid. However, you won’t be able to produce new signed builds until you renew.

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So technically, I’d only need pay the developer fee when I need to sign an app? I could skip years I’m not distributing anything new?

Technically yes. Practically, I wouldn’t recommend that though. This kind of stuff is why there’s no such thing as free software.


This contradicts what’s been said above. Obviously, they can’t force renewals. Realistically, there may be times when I’m not planning to distribute any software. If an app is signed and doesn’t need signed again because of no changes, and if there will be no new software created that needs to be signed, why can’t a year be skipped?

Hi Tim,

I just sprung for the Apple Developer Account (I let my business pick up that expense). Where do I get your AppWrapper? I created a cert for distributing a Mac App outside of the App Store. I’m assuming that is the correct cert type as there were several listed. In any case, I’ve got the cert downloaded to my Mac, no just need to apply to one of my apps and give it a try. :slight_smile:

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