VMware ThinApp

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VMware ThinApp
VMware ThinApp v4.0 icon.png
Original author(s)Jitit Inc.[1]
Stable release
5.2.4 / September 18, 2018; 3 months ago (2018-09-18)[2]
Operating systemWindows XP and later
Windows Server 2003 and later
Size85.5 MB
TypeApplication virtualization
Portable application creator

VMware ThinApp (formerly Thinstall) is an application virtualization and portable application creator suite by VMware that can package conventional applications[3] so that they become portable applications. According to VMware, the product has a success rate of about 90–95 % in packaging applications.[4]


ThinApp (previously known as Thinstall) was originally developed by Jitit Inc. and was acquired by VMware on January 15, 2008.[5] VMware later used the code name VMware Project North Star while the product was in beta.[6] On June 10, 2008, VMware announced that the final name for the product was going to be VMware ThinApp.[7] The trial version of Thinstall was initially available only to corporations,[8] however VMware now offers a public trial version.[9]


VMware ThinApp is an application virtualization solution.[10] ThinApp is able to execute applications without them being installed in the traditional sense by virtualizing resources such as environment variables, files and Windows Registry keys. The virtual environment presented to the client is a merged view of the underlying physical and virtual resources, thereby allowing the virtualization layer to fool the application into thinking that it is running as if it were fully installed. ThinApp does not have any pre-installed components and does not require the installation of device drivers allowing applications to run from USB flash drives or network shares without ever requiring Administrator rights. ThinApp converts standard application installers such as .msi files into self-contained EXE files which includes everything required to run. Also it is able to scan a system before and after an application's installation and create a portable executable based upon changes made to the systems files and registry. Unlike self-extracting ZIP files, ThinApp does not extract files to disk or require system registry changes in order to run applications. ThinApp supports Windows XP and later, as well as Windows Server 2003 and later. ThinApp supports all released Windows systems from Windows NT4, 2000, XP (64/32), Vista (64/32), Server 2003, Server 2008 (64), Server 2008 R2 (64), Windows 7 (64/32), Windows 8/8.1 (64/32, but not RT), and Windows 2012.[3]


The most "basic" version of ThinApp is "VMware ThinApp Starter Edition", offered for free with any purchase of VMware Workstation,[11][12] while the most "advanced" version is "VMware ThinApp Enterprise Edition", which adds support for AppSync updating, Active Directory integration and allows usage by multiple users (both for the ThinApp Packager and ThinApp Client).[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "vFILTERS: VMware Thinapp history and basic work... - VMware Communities". vmware.com.
  2. ^ "VMware ThinApp 5.2.4 Release Notes". VMware ThinApp 5.2.4 Release Notes. VMware, Inc. September 18, 2018. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  3. ^ a b ThinApp User’s Guide: ThinApp 5.1 (PDF). VMware. 10 December 2014.
  4. ^ "Top 10 Questions on ThinApp". vmware.com.
  5. ^ "VMware to Expand Desktop Virtualization Solution with Acquisition of Thinstall" (Press release). VMware. January 15, 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-11.
  6. ^ "VMware ThinApp (Project North Star/Thinstall) Release Candidate". VMware. June 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-11.
  7. ^ "VMware Launches ThinApp 4.0 to Run Virtually Any Application on Any Windows Operating System without Conflict by raju" (Press release). VMware. June 10, 2008. Archived from the original on June 12, 2008. Retrieved June 11, 2008.
  8. ^ "VMware ThinApp Application Virtualization Platform: IT Management Solutions". Thinstall.com. Archived from the original on 2009-03-12. Retrieved 2009-10-22.
  9. ^ "Evaluate VMware ThinApp". VMware. Retrieved 2008-08-09.
  10. ^ "Introduction to VMware ThinApp" (PDF). VMware. 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2008-08-05.
  11. ^ a b http://www.vmware.com/products/workstation/thinapp-starter-edition.html
  12. ^ "Buy VMware Workstation 7, Get VMware ThinApp Starter Edition For Free!". vmware.com.

External links[edit]