The Package Support Framework (PSF) helps developers and IT admins package applications into the MSIX package format. PSF is designed to help overcome common challenges when packaging and deploying software using MSIX, such as compatibility issues, missing dependencies, incorrect registry entries and issues related to running the application inside an MSIX container.
PSF consists of three core components: the PSF Launcher, Config file and Fixups. The PSF Launcher is a small executable responsible for starting your application. The Fixups are small dynamic-link libraries (DLLs) that the PSF Launcher loads to fix any issues that might prevent your application from running and the config file that you use to configure PSF.
PSF is beneficial for developers and IT Admins who are repackaging and deploying desktop applications. In these cases, the PSF helps to ensure that your application runs on modern versions of Windows and can handle different hardware configurations. For example, suppose your application relies on a specific version of the .NET Framework. In that case, PSF can be configured to ensure that this version is installed before your application starts. However, you may want to handle the required runtime before installing apps.
Another advantage of the PSF is that it helps resolve dependencies between different application components. For example, suppose your application relies on a specific version of a DLL. In that case, the PSF can be configured to ensure that this DLL is included in the installation package and is available when the application starts. Again, this helps ensure your application runs smoothly and is free of compatibility issues.
Finally, PSF is easy to use with the help of appCURE Studio. PSF uses a simple JSON configuration file that developers and IT admins can modify to specify the fixups they want to use and the configuration options they need. This file is part of the installation package and is read by the PSF Launcher when the application starts. appCURE Studio helps simplify the manual creation and customisation of these PSF configuration files, making the process of using the PSF even more accessible for IT admins.
In conclusion, the Package Support Framework (PSF) is a powerful tool for IT admins and developers packaging and deploying desktop applications into the MSIX format. The PSF helps improve application compatibility when using MSIX as a packaging format.