Deployment is the process by which you distribute a finished application or component to be installed on other computers. Deployment is a multi-stage process that starts when an application is created on a developer's computer and ends when it is installed and ready to run on a user's computer.
Visual Studio provides two different technologies for deploying Windows applications: ClickOnce deployment or Windows Installer deployment.
C++ applications targeting the Common Language Runtime (mixed, pure, and verifiable assemblies) should be deployed using ClickOnce technology. You can use Windows Installer to deploy a managed application, but ClickOnce takes advantage of .NET Framework security features (such as manifest signing) and is therefore recommended. For more information, see ClickOnce Deployment for Visual C++ Applications.
Native C++ applications must be deployed using Windows Installer technology. ClickOnce does not support native C++ applications.
For a detailed comparison of ClickOnce and Windows Installer deployment, see .
This section discusses how to ensure that a native Visual C++ application runs on any computer that provides a supported target platform, which files you need to include in your installation package, and what are the recommended ways to redistribute the Visual C++ components on which your application depends.
The following topics discuss deployment of Visual C++ applications in more detail.