The User Experience

The user experience for running a ClickOnce locally installed application begins with a web page, such as the one shown in Figure 2-9, that includes a link to install the ClickOnce application. Clicking the link for the first time shows a download progress dialog similar to Figure 2-10.

j Launching Application

Verifying application requirements. This may take a few moments.

Figure 2-10. Progress dialog for checking the application manifest

Once the metadata file describing the application deployment settings has been downloaded (this file is called the application manifest), it will be checked for a certificate, which is extra information attached to the application that identifies a validated publisher name. ClickOnce requires all published applications to be signed, so Visual Studio will generate a certificate file for you as part of the initial publication process if you haven't already provided one.

If the certificate used to sign the application manifest identifies a publisher that is already approved to install the application on the user's machine (such as from a previous version or a IT-administered group policy), the application will be run without further ado, as shown at the beginning of this chapter in Figure 2-4.

If, on the other hand, the publisher's certificate cannot be verified or is not yet trusted to run the application in question, a dialog similar to Figure 2-11 will be presented.

Figure 2-11. The Application Install dialog with an unknown publisher

Figure 2-11 displays the name of the application, the source of the application, and the publisher of the application according to the certificate (or "Unknown Publisher" if the certificate could not be verified). It also lists a summary of the reasons this dialog is being shown, along with a link to more detailed warning information. However, such information will likely be ignored by the user choosing between the Install and Don't Install buttons, from which the user will choose depending on the level of trust she has for the publisher she sees in the Security Warning dialog.

If the user chooses Don't Install, no application code will be downloaded or executed. If she chooses Install, the application is downloaded, added to the Start menu, and added to the Add or Remove Programs Control Panel, all under the umbrella of the progress dialog shown in Figure 2-12, after which the application is executed.

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This may take several minutes. You can use your computer (BPS) to do other tasks during the installation ^Mf

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Preparing Application...

Figure 2-12. Progress dialog for installing a locally installed ClickOnce application

Subsequent runs of the same version of the application, as launched from either a web site or the Start menu, will not ask for any additional user input (although they may show a dialog if checking for updates), but will launch the installed application directly.

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