An installation and update framework for Windows desktop apps
C++ C# C Objective-C
Latest commit cc57687 Jan 12, 2017 @paulcbetts paulcbetts committed on GitHub Merge pull request #924 from runehalfdan/master
Fixed semenatic versioning regex to support uppercase characters.

Squirrel: It's like ClickOnce but Works™

Squirrel is both a set of tools and a library, to completely manage both installation and updating your Desktop Windows application, written in either C# or any other language (i.e., Squirrel can manage native C++ applications).

Squirrel uses NuGet packages to create installation and update packages, which means that you probably already know most of what you need to create an installer.

What Do We Want?

Windows apps should be as fast and as easy to install and update as apps like Google Chrome. From an app developer's side, it should be really straightforward to create an installer for my app, and publish updates to it, without having to jump through insane hoops.

  • Integrating an app to use Squirrel should be extremely easy, provide a client API, and be developer friendly.
  • Packaging is really easy, can be automated, and supports delta update packages.
  • Distributing should be straightforward, use simple HTTP updates, and provide multiple "channels" (a-la Chrome Dev/Beta/Release).
  • Installing is Wizard-Free™, with no UAC dialogs, does not require reboot, and is .NET Framework friendly.
  • Updating is in the background, doesn't interrupt the user, and does not require a reboot.

Refer to our full list of goals for integrating, packaging, distributing, installing, and updating.


See the documentation Table of Contents for an overview of the available documentation for Squirrel.Windows. It includes a Getting Started Guide as well as additional topics related to using Squirrel in your applications.

Building Squirrel

For the impatient:

git clone
git submodule update --init --recursive       ## THIS IS THE PART YOU PROBABLY FORGOT
.\.NuGet\NuGet.exe restore
msbuild /p:Configuration=Release

See Contributing for additional information on building and contributing to Squirrel.

License and Usage

See COPYING for details on copyright and usage of the Squirrel.Windows software.