Chapter 9. Working from the Command Line

Creating an MSI file with WiX takes two steps: compiling your source files and then linking them together into a single package. A tool called Candle handles the compiling, transforming your .wxs files into .wixobj files. The linking phase is handled by a tool called Light.

In this chapter, we'll discuss the following topics:

  • The arguments to use when calling Candle and Light from the command line
  • Compile-time and link-time variables
  • How to build an MSI without using Visual Studio


Candle, the WiX compiler, can be run from the command line to build your WiX source files. Behind the scenes, Visual Studio is really just calling this tool for you. When you use it yourself you can give it any of a number ...

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