Can I install Readerware on a thumb drive and use it on any computer?

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Last Updated: November 30, 2018
Keywords: install, thumb, portable


You need to install Readerware in the normal way, create a local install on your computer. You can then create a customized, portable, Readerware install.

First though you will normally want to start using Readerware, create your database and configure Readerware. When you have things set up just the way you want, you are ready to create a portable Readerware install.


Select the File->Make Portable menu item.

On the Drive Selection page of the wizard you tell Readerware where to create the portable install and the type of portable installation you want to create:

Portable (Thumb drive) - This will create a complete installation with full access to the database.Imagine taking your drive from machine to machine and cataloging books as you go.This is a full Readerware install with update capabilities. You can also import the database back from the thumb drive.

CD (read only database) - This will create a full Readerware system with your database on a CD. The database itself is read only, you cannot update the database. You can use the CD to send to non-Readerware users so that they can view your database or catalog.

Network Launcher - This will install Readerware to a network share, users can then run the program from the share without having to first install the program. This is designed to be used with Readerware Client/Server Edition.

When selecting the drive, you can create a Readerware Portable (thumb drive) directly to you thumb drive or portable drive. When creating a CD (read only) install you should select a staging folder. The files will be written to this location and you can then burn them to CD.

On the Options page you specify the components you want to install:

Copy program - The current Readerware program will be copied.

Copy database - Copy your current Readerware database. You can only copy a local Readerware database, if you are using Readerware in Client/Server mode for example, this option will be disabled.

Copy preferences - Copy your Readerware preferences. When you copy preferences the portable install will look exactly like your main install, the same views, layout, fonts etc.

Normally you will copy all three components when creating the thumb drive or CD install. You can build combination installers. Suppose you want to let users run Readerware on both Windows and Macs. You could build the install from your main machine and copy all three components. Then move the thumb drive to your other machine and just copy the program. Now you will have your full database, customized preferences along with the Windows and Mac versions of Readerware.

When creating a network launcher, you will normally copy just the programs and preferences. Readerware is setup just the way you want and will connect to your Readerware server.


Using the Readerware Portable Wizard you can create a snapshot of a Readerware installation, one that has been customized for your purposes. You can create three different types of installers.

The Readerware Thumb drive installer creates a full version of Readerware along with your database on a thumb drive. Put it on your key ring and take it wherever you go. You can plug it in to any computer and run Readerware.

The Readerware CD installer creates a full version of Readerware with a read only database that you can distribute to non-Readerware users. They can browse and search your database.

The Readerware Network Launcher is designed to be used with Readerware Client/Server Edition. Configure your Readerware installation just the way you want. Then host the launcher on your network and users can run Readerware, you don't need to install Readerware on each machine first.


Moving the database back to your computer

If you put Readerware on a thumb drive, you can use it as your main Readerware installation. Remember to backup your Readerware database in case you lose the thumb drive.

If you will only be using the thumb drive temporarily, you can move the database back from the thumb drive to your computer when you are finished. Select the File->Import Portable menu item. Select your thumb drive. Readerware will then verify that there is a Readerware portable installation on the drive and will move the updated database back to your computer.

It is important that you use the import portable function when bringing your database back to your computer. Don't use backup and restore to move the database back.