Setting up a WIX 3.0 build environment

I recently encountered some problem with heat.exe with respect to COM registry harvesting, and wanted to step through the code in the debugger, to see what was the problem.

I had some initial trouble setting up a dev environment for WiX, have read Neil Sleightholm's post on  How To Create a WiX build machine, but it didn’t go so well for me.  The process is really simple, with the following commands:

  • do a cvs checkout per instruction here:
    • cvs login
    • cvs -z3 co -P wix
  • set WIX_ROOT environment variable
  • cd to %WIX_ROOT%
  • Run bin\wixenv.bat,
  • Run NAnt

Yet, when I ran the NAnt command, I kept getting this error:

Failed to initialize the 'Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0' (net-2.0) target
framework. Property evaluation failed.
Expression: ${path::combine(sdkInstallRoot, 'bin')}
Property 'sdkInstallRoot' has not been set.

Part of the problem was that it needed a post-0.86-beta1 build of NAnt, which unfortunately, is not available on the NAnt project home page. I managed to find it by googling, leading to  this download link (the version I downloaded was 0.86.3317.0, 30/01/2009).  Once I got NAnt 0.86.3317.0 in place, the wix build finished without a hitch.