When I used VB 5.0, I had a handle on the "Build" process. I'd make an .exe and put it on the machine I wished it to run on. If it required copious data or reference files, I'd either build the directory I needed with a batch file, or put it all on a CD with an autorun.inf.
In VB.NET 2005, when I hit "Project" "build" I get an .exe file in the appropriate /bin/release folder, but if I copy the .exe to a CD or other drive, and try to run it on another machine, I get "The program failed to initialize properly." I've made sure that all of the files that are in the /bin/release folder are also on the CD, in case it's trying to refer to an external file.
The project runs under debug in the IDE, and the .exe runs on the development PC with the IDE closed.
One possible hypothesis that I haven't tested: The program uses a "RealPlayerG2" control to access sound file snippets. Is it possible that the target machine doesn't have RealPlayer, so the control won't work? Is that a likely cause of this error? Should I rewrite the program using a Windows Media Player control (which is .COM network instead of .NET)?
Or should I be using the "Project" "Publish" menu item, and creating a "Setup" file that the user has to run before using the program proper?
Any thoughts, comments, or war stories are welcome... I'm planning to send the completed CD to a user in Europe, so I'd like it to be bulletproof before I ship.