[How To] Create Your Own Portable Applications Using Thinapp


After browsing the net a few months ago, I came apon a website showing off there own portable applications which you can easily use, on any PC without the need for installing (www.portableapps.com). After being annoyed by portableapps.com’s annoying splash screen, I decided to make my own.

This simple tutorial will explain, on how to create your very own portable apps.

You will need VMware Thinapp used to be known as Thinstall and a Virtual Machine, use VMware Workstation or if your cheap like ME. You can use the free virtual machine software made my Sun Microsystems (Java Creators) called Virtual Box.

1. Create a XP or Windows 7 virtual machine (I recommend XP and Win7 because of stability, and just coz Win7 Ownz).

2. Install VMware Thinapp on the Virtual Machine.

3. Open Setup Capture and run prescan (wait a while…).

4. After prescan complete, minimise and install the program you want portable. In my case, I’ll be “Thinapping” Mozilla Thunderbird.

5. After the setup of the program is complete,  customize it so the program runs the way you like it.

6. Open back up Thinapp and click post install scan.


7. After the scan is complete, select which .exe is to be the main container.  For those of you who don’t know what the container is, it’s the thing which contains all the data for your app. For me since I like the bird icon, I”ll select thunderbird.exe.

8. Make an inventory name if want one, you really don’t have to. To keep things simple if you do make a name, keep it the name of the app.  Click next.

9. The next screen shows a data profiles. There are two options: “tied” and “local”.  The first option “tied” is that any changes to portable app the changes data will be saved in the C:\Users\Your_Name\ folder. The second option is “local” the difference, is that changes data will be saved in the directory where the portable app is kept. Select the second option. Click next.

10. After that choose fast compression, next.

11. Choose Isolation mode… next.

12. Hit build now…(wait a bit).

13. When it’s finished, click on browser project.

14. When a folder pops up, the portable app is kept in the bin folder.

15. Copy the portable app from the virtual machine to your usb drive and your done!

Note: When click on the app, on the taskbar will apear a VMware logo saying who created it and what it is. When it done its loading it’ll disappear, and your apps opens.

Thinapp Link (it has everything that you want, trust us.)


Posted on February 16, 2010, in Computer Programs, News, Software and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Heads up: This article is NOT written by me, but by new contributor butali. I had to fix parts of it, but for a first article good knowledge. Hell, I even learned something here!

  2. Thanks Verstaile

  3. I see why you don’t recommend Vista, damn system won’t even run the app 😦

    Is it possible to make games installed with Iso files portable (If a mounted disc isn’t required to load)?

  4. Yes iso’s will work, just make sure you extract all the files have been installed.

    I’ll post a link for a version of Thinapp that works with vista later.

  5. Hi is it possible how to extract files from the exe container? which made from thinapp?. I mean i have portable of a certain programs but i prefer to use the files inside in it not the .exe container. Please help or give me some tips. thanks

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