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Occasional Visitor

Will MSIX support installation of Windows services? We have a scenario in which customers have unattended computers that need to continue working across power failure/restoration, and Windows services provide our best solution.

26 Replies
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Best Response confirmed by John Vintzel (Microsoft)
Solution
Support for Windows Services is an item in our backlog. The scenario will be able for enterprises and apps in the Microsoft Store for Business.
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The same way MSIX brings all the packaging features to any app that were originally only available to UWP/Store apps, giving regular apps a bit of a boost in terms of lifecycle and rights management, it would be nice to have MSIX for Windows Services with support for traditional Windows Services use-case scenarios but also "UWP Background Task"-like features with stricter resource management, system triggers, etc.

 

Also, with the "sandboxing" features of MSIX, it could be a very interesting alternative to Containers on servers to achieve even higher deployment density, pretty much the same as hosting services as processes, but still with an extra layer of protection around it.

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@John Vintzel  Is this this now available in the May Win 10 update?

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It's not part of the May release, but you will see it in Insider flights later this summer.

 

John Vintzel (@jvintzel)

Program Manager Lead, MSIX

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@John Vintzel Will that require insider flights of the OS also?

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@TIMOTHY MANGAN I was speaking to the OS.  Support for services is one of the few things that will require an OS update.

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@John Vintzel Is the support for windows service available in latest update .

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@shan2030 

 

Its part of the latest Windows Insider preview builds (18999 or later).  The MSIX Packaging Tool does not yet support capturing.  That will be coming in the next release.

 

John.

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@John VintzelIs the support for services now available in MSIX Packaging tool Insiders Build?

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@shobz_krish 

 

We try to keep the release notes up to date for new features.  Services is in the latest insider build.

 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/msix/packaging-tool/release-notes/history 

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@sw-services null - Its been a couple years, did you ever figure this out?

 

I need a Windows Store app to both install a UI and a Windows Service to manage background updates.

 

Thanks

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@JeremyTellier  Yes. MSIX apps may now contain services.  Known caveats I am aware of:

  • The service is deployed natively with the package, so unlike normal MSIX package install this requires administrative rights. But this is the same as an MSI would need.
  • The service is running outside of the container.  So far simple services seem OK, but I'm sure that we will see some services that really need to be in the container with the other components. So test.
  • The deployment requires a 20.04 Operating System.
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@TIMOTHY MANGAN - Is it possible to configure that with a Windows Installer Packaging Project? I have been looking for examples everywhere, I was about to downgrade to a Windows Setup Project form VS 2015. Thanks!

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I should mention I have a package I need in the Windows Store that has a UI Application and a Background Windows Service. I don't see how to do both in one anywhere, documentation is so light.
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@JeremyTellier  I'm not sure.  I would have used a third party product to help build the package from source.  Advanced Installer should be able to do it, although possibly you need the paid for version. Flexera either can or should shortly be able to.
 
Perhaps @John Vintzel  can provide a link to some VS Setup Project compatible documentation.

 

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Hi @JeremyTellier,

 

The recommendation for apps in development is to use a background task instead of a windows service. You can create an out-of-process background task as outlined here - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/uwp/launch-resume/create-and-register-a-background-task

 

Cheers,

Tanaka 

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@Tanaka_Jimha Those do not run as LocalSystem though right? The process needs to pull down a service and uninstall/reinstall and resent network settings that require a higher priv level.

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@JeremyTellier If the only purpose of the service is to update the application, and you are the developer, then you should probably be looking at ditching the service and using a better supported way of updating MSIX apps.  

 

Presumably the existing service is making some sort of web connection to detect and download the new software.  MSIX has that built in, if you ask for it.  This will be much simpler for you to support. Here is a link about this, but perhaps @Tanaka_Jimha has a better one.

 

There are some limitations to consider...  See: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/msix-deployment/msix-automatic-updates-and-authentication/m-p...

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 @TIMOTHY MANGAN - That is not the intent, it does a lot more than that, it is just one of the things it needs to handle, but regardless Windows Store apps should allow you to install and run Windows Services.