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Sharing a Program: Introduction to Deployment

In this lesson, you will learn about the different ways to share your programs with others.

Once you finish writing, testing and debugging, you probably want to share your masterpiece with others. The process of making copies of your program and distributing them is known as deployment.

You might think that you can simply copy the program files to another computer and run the program. However, in many cases, you will then find that the program does not run. This is because most programs depend on other pieces of software known as components that must be installed on the other computer. If you try to run your program and a component is missing, your program won't run.

Visual Basic includes tools for deploying your program using a method known as ClickOnce publishing, which makes deployment easy by automatically including and installing all of the necessary components along with your program. ClickOnce allows you to publish your program to a CD-ROM or DVD that you can then share with others.

If you have access to a Web server, you can also use ClickOnce to publish your program to a Web site; the program can then be downloaded over the Internet. If you later change your program, you can then publish the new version, and anyone who downloaded your program can automatically download the new version the next time they run the program.

To publish a program using ClickOnce, you need access to a CD or DVD burner, or to a Web server. If you do not have access to either of these, you may still be able to share your program by compressing it and copying it to a floppy disk or sending it through e-mail.

In this topic, you learned about deployment and ClickOnce publishing. In the next lesson, you will learn how to publish your program using ClickOnce.

Next Lesson: Distributing a Program on CD: Publishing with ClickOnce

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