We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

What Does an Application Packager Do?

By Micah MacBride
Updated: Mar 03, 2024

When an computer application is finished and distributed, an end user can launch the program by clicking on a single icon. During that application's development, software engineers use a number of different resources that require highly technical processes to launch and test the program. The job of an application packager is to take the different components that constitute a program and make it so that the end user can easily install and start the application.

An application packager's first task is to identify all the libraries and files that a program needs to run successfully. These can take the form of software libraries, database files, compiled source code files, and graphical components. Some of these files will reside in the program's directory but other resources, such as database servers or system graphics engines, have to be installed as separate software on the end user's computer.

The application packager gathers all the files that do not need to be installed as separate system software into a single folder. In the development process, programmers can call these resources from anywhere on their workstation, but end products need a uniform configuration. By condensing all the files into a single directory, the application packager ensures that all of the code in a program contains the correct directory paths to access those resources.

After the application packager consolidates all the files a program needs to run, he or she prepares the directory itself for the end user. This involves replacing default system icons for executable files with the icons graphical artists designed specifically for the program, and including documentation files in the directory. After these components are ready, the packager has to configure an installer for the application.

An application packager uses software specifically designed to create and automate installation processes. This involves:

  • specifying what software components must be present on the system in order for the program to run
  • loading the files necessary to add that software in the case that it is absent from the system,
  • loading the directory containing all the application's files.

The last step is for the packager to test the installer on machines representative of what customers will be using to ensure that the process works.

Application packagers require backgrounds in computer science and programming. They do not write major parts of the program's source code, but still need to understand the software development cycle and how to edit source code. This is necessary in order to ensure that the source code accurately reflects the final file layout of the program's directory.

Practical Adult Insights is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
Practical Adult Insights, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

Practical Adult Insights, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.