cargo-wix: A cargo subcommand to create Windows installers
A subcommand for Cargo that builds a Windows installer (msi) using the Wix Toolset from the release build of a Rust binary project. It also supports signing the Windows installer if a code signing certificate is available using the SignTool application available in the Windows 10 SDK.
Start a command prompt (cmd.exe) and then execute the following commands:
C:\>cargo install cargo-wix C:\>cd Path\To\Project C:\Path\To\Project\>cargo wix init C:\Path\To\Project\>cargo wix
The Windows installer (msi) for the project will be in the
The cargo-wix project can be installed on any platform supported by the Rust programming language, but the Wix Toolset is Windows only; thus, this project is only useful when installed on a Windows machine. Ensure the following dependencies are installed before proceeding. Note, Cargo is installed automatically when installing the Rust programming language. The
stable-x86_64-pc-windows-msvc toolchain is recommended.
After installing and configuring the dependencies, execute the following command to install the
C:\> cargo install cargo-wix
C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix init
This will create the
wix folder in the project's root (along side the
Cargo.toml file) and then it will create the
wix\main.wxs file from the WiX Source (wxs) embedded within the subcommand. The generated
wix\main.wxs file can be used without modification with the following command to create an installer for the project:
C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix
cargo wix subcommand without any arguments searches for a
wix\main.wxs file, relative to the project's root. It will compile the
wix\main.wxs file and then link the object file (
target\wix\build\main.wixobj) to create the Windows installer (msi). The installer will be located in the
target\wix folder. All artifacts of the installer compilation and linking process are placed within the
target\wix folder. Paths in the
wix\main.wxs file should be relative to the project's root, i.e. the same location as the
Cargo.toml manifest file.
A different WiX Source (wxs) file from the
wix\main.wxs file can be used by specifying a path to it as an argument to the subcommand as follows:
C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix Path\to\WiX\Source\File.wxs
print <template> subcommand, which prints one of the embedded templates to stdout, can be used to create the
main.wxs file. A WXS template file specifically designed to work with this subcommand is embedded within the
cargo-wix binary during installation. Use the following commands to create a WiX Source file and use it to create an installer with this subcommand.
C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix print wxs > example.wxs C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix example.wxs
The WiX source file can be customized using a text editor, but modification of the XML preprocessor variables should be avoided to ensure the
cargo wix command works properly.
To sign the installer (msi) as part of the build process, ensure the
signtool command is available in the PATH system environment variable or use the Developer Prompt that was installed with the Windows 10 SDK, and use the
sign sub-subcommand as follows:
C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix sign
-h,--help flag to display information about additional options and features.
C:\Path\to\Project> cargo wix -h
The tests must be run using the
cargo test -- --test-threads=1 command from the root folder of the project, i.e. the same location as the
Cargo.toml file. The
--test-threads=1 option is needed because integration tests ran in parallel will cause many tests to fail. This is because many of the integration tests change the current working directory (CWD) to as closely as possible mimic usage by a user from within a cargo-based project. The same environment is shared across each test even though each test is essentially a separate application.