Developing cabal2wix - building Windows installers automatically

Simon Marlow simonmarhaskell at
Wed Aug 8 04:19:04 EDT 2007

Esa Ilari Vuokko wrote:
> Hi,
> I decided to try to build a cabal -> wix converter, cabal2wix, to make
> it easier to generate Windows installers for cabal-packages.  My main
> target is ghc-compiled libraries.  There are few issues I've ran into
> and I'd appreciate any comments on them.
> I'll try to publish the darcs repo somewhere if there's interest.
> Some of the issues are gray, as I don't understand all the details
> myself, and reading Cabal's code isn't very enlightening.
> Issue 1:
>  Cabal puts (at least) docs under Program Files\Common Files - this
> separates docs from other parts of the program by logical placing,

Not quite true: for an executable, on Windows, docs currently go by default 
into $prefix\Haskell\$pkgid. See:

For a library, data files go in C:\Program Files\Common Files\$pkgid. 
There's a very good reason for this: a library cannot discover its 
installation location like an executable can, because it could be linked in 
to an executable anywhere on the system.  Hence if a library needs access 
to auxiliary data files, they better be in a fixed place in the filesystem. 
  A library with data files cannot be fully relocatable at install-time.

However, we do need to change where docs go (they don't have to go in 
$datadir, and they can be relocated at install-time).


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