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I just began using a Windows program called MarkdownPad which is for editing markdown files.

It is different from programs I am used to using. Instead of installing to a directory that I set, it just saves some kind of shortcut to my Start Menu but I cannot see where the files are actually being called from.

When I install it or open what looks like the installer exe file, it shows a window that says:

Verifying application requirements. This may take a few moments.

From my research it seems this is called a ClickOnce application and it seems that these files can auto update themselves from the web

When it shows that message above, does that mean it is connecting to a server somewhere? If I had no Internet connection would this program fail to work?

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2 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

ClickOnce applications check the developer's website when they start up to see if there's a more recent version available. If there is, it will offer to download the updated version and install it for you. This automatic updating is one of the key benefits to ClickOnce applications.

If you don't have Internet access you can still run the program, but obviously it won't update unless you are connected. I suppose there may be a short delay while it attempts to connect to the server and fails, but it shouldn't be a long one.

Another common ClickOnce application is the MetroTwit Twitter application: http://www.metrotwit.com/

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Thanks for the info. I generally always have a connection but I wasn't sure if one was required, for example if I wanted to use it on a USB drive on other PC's. So it sounds like it should be ok. 1 problem I am having now is the program I have is for markdown files, I would like to set it to open these files but I can't because it doesn't seem to be installed like other programs? –  jasondavis Dec 2 '11 at 20:31
    
Ill accept you answer and start a new question for that part –  jasondavis Dec 2 '11 at 20:32
    
As the developer of MarkdownPad, I can confirm this answer is correct. MarkdownPad is deployed via ClickOnce, which handles both the installation and automatic updates. An internet connection is required for the initial installation, but is not required for continued use (although as Scott pointed out, you won't receive automatic updates without an internet connection). –  Evan Wondrasek Dec 7 '11 at 2:10
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Scott Bussinger's answer is mostly correct, and it's certainly accurate from your perspective. However, in regards to your question as it is asked by the title, no, not all ClickOnce applications need the internet, in order to be both installed and updated.

A ClickOnce application can be installed from an local Intranet location. The difference may seem subtle and it doesn't matter in your case. However, it was worth fully answering your question since the StackOverflow network is highly indexed by Google and often cross referenced on the web. Other user's with the same question but if their reasons are different, this information might be pertinent.

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