AppLife Update Solution Overview

The AppLife solution provides the tools and components to maintain deployed Windows software anywhere.

Maintain Deployed Software

Organizations that create installable Windows software face a huge obstacle with each new release of their software. Each release kicks off a costly and painful process of maintaining all previous installations. Removing this obstacle is what the AppLife Update solution is designed to do. AppLife Update is a compressive, cost effective solution to the issue of maintaining deployed Windows software that works for even the most complicated application installations. Once implemented, AppLife Update enables your software team with the ability to independently and effortlessly maintain all your deployed installations. Here's how:

Make Necessary Changes

A deployed software application has many parts. Application files, local databases, Windows Services, installed COM components, etc. In order to maintain a deployed software application, you must be able to reliably perform all of the actions necessary to migrate an existing installation from one version to the next. Additionally, the changes must be performed in a transactional process that either succeeds, or rolls back to the original state. With AppLife Update, changes are made by our exclusive AppLife Update Engine. The update engine performs a list of update actions that you define. There are configurable actions to perform all common software maintenance tasks. And for not-so-common tasks, custom actions allow your team to create new actions that can perform the work necessary to keep your deployed installations current.

Authority to Make Changes

Making changes to a deployed client installation almost always requires administrative assistance. For many teams, this is the most expensive and time-consuming challenge of deploying a maintenance update. When administrative rights are required, software teams must coordinate with IT departments to deploy maintenance updates or worse, expect end-users to request administrative support themselves. With the AppLife Update Engine and the Permissions Elevation feature, after a one-time administrative installation, limited-rights users can successfully apply maintenance updates anytime, and without administrative support. ADMIN ELEVATION DETAILS

Integrating a Maintenance Process

The maintenance process includes identifying when an update is available, retrieving the new maintenance update, and then initiating the installation of the update. The AppLife Update Solution provides both low-impact and highly customized integration options. For all Windows applications, the Multi-Application Update Manager Windows application or the Application Launcher options are available. For applications built using Microsoft .Net, the AppLife solution includes multiple drag-and-drop Visual Controls. And for those solutions with unique requirements, our extensive API allows for quickly creating an integration process that looks and behaves any way you like. 

Creating and Publishing Maintenance Updates

A maintenance update using AppLife Update consists of a list of Update Actions that will be performed on your deployed client. This action list is designed and configured using the AppLife Make Update Windows application. There are over 50 built-in update actions that enables all common update tasks, such as replacing or patching application files, modifying local XML configuration files, running SQL scripts on databases, Starting/Stopping and replacing Windows Services, modifying the Windows Registry and using the Windows command line. And when you need an action that isn’t available, using .Net C# or VB.Net, customized actions can be created and packaged for execution during your maintenance updates. This allows for almost limitless action to be taken during an application maintenance update.

With an action list defined, maintenance updates are created and published to an AppLife Server from within the Make Update application. If your solution is built using an automated or continuous build process, you can integrate maintenance updates using the AppLife Command Line Build Utility or the AppLife MSBuild Task. 

Monitoring the Health of Deployed Software

The AppLife Server Dashboard provides a portal to monitor the health and status of your deployed software. At a glance, view the adoption rate of your latest release, look up the version installed on a specific deployed client, be alerted when an update fails and more. With AppLife Update, your organization stays in constant contact with your deployed client software.