missing .lnk shortcuts shortcut from MSIX package

Occasional Contributor

Hi Everyone,


my application has 4 shortcuts. 3 shortcuts launch the .chm(help file) and 1 shortcut opens a vendor website. I am now converting this application to MSIX. during conversion, on first launch window I can not see any shortcuts. when I try to add them , I can see only .exe files. unable to add my shortcuts. 


can you please help me here ?

5 Replies
best response confirmed by John Vintzel (Microsoft)



In MSIX you don't technically have shortcuts, you have Applications. These can only target .exe files, that is why you can't add you .chm or website as a shortcut.


As an alternative, in Advanced Installer, we are launching the applications via a custom stub.exe, thus making it possible to add websites or chm files.


I have found it necessary to use the Package Support Framework (PSF) as a solution to migrating traditional installers that create shortcuts pointing to non-exe files, as well as those that have command line arguments.  


I extended the PSF to support these use cases earlier this year.  In essence, your shortcut (perhaps we should use the term "entry point", although I think the ultimate result is called a "start tile") would point to a copy of PsfLaunch and a config.json file would be used to tell PsfLaunch what to do.


If you are a developer building a MSIX package, these are just components to add in, although if you want an icon for that start tile you'll have to add it into PsfLaunch executable.


If you are repackaging an existing installer into an MSIX package (something IT Pros do), you use a packaging tool like the Microsoft MSIX Packaging tool (or one from a Microsoft partner such as above that includes a version of the PSF).  With the Microsoft tool, you'll need to add the PSF yourself, but up in the Microsoft Store you can also find an additional tool I built to help called PsfTooling.


This free tool is used while in monitoring mode of the packaging tool to inject and configure the PSF for you.  You run the traditional installer for your package, then run PsfTooling.  In PsfTooling select the shortcut wizard and pick your shortcuts.  It automatically will figure out how to launch the original intent of your shortcut in MSIX land. While there are options to inject additional fixups in that wizard, you won't need those if all you want is to fix these shortcut issues.  Apply the changes, then finish off the recapture.

Hi @alexmarin89 ,

thank you.

I believe solution you mentioned needs an licensed copy of advanced Installer . we are using MSIX Packaging Tool to convert setup to MSIX. 

Hi @Tim Mangan ,


Thank you. I have downloaded the Psftooling and I will try to use it for my requirement.

Hi @Archana2612 


You can use the free Express edition from Advanced Installer. It contains the functionality mentioned above.


Thi edition was launched by our team at the same time with the MSIX announcement.