I have a folder to distribute. On Mac, I can put all the folder's contents into a DMG, which the user can just click to open and see all the contents.

What is the equivalent on Windows? Some have said ISO, but when I create one, Windows either sees it as a DVD image and opens Windows Disk Image Burner or sees it as a compressed directory, making the user extract all contained files before they can be used.

Isn't there something that can just be opened in the same way as a DMG?

closed as off-topic by user151019, fsb, grg, Allan, klanomath Oct 22 '16 at 0:55

  • This question does not appear to be about Apple hardware or software within the scope defined in the help center.
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Is there any reason you cannot just distribute it as a .zip archive file? – user3439894 Oct 21 '16 at 15:49
  • I'm distributing an application update and would just prefer the users don't have to add any extra steps or have 3rd party software involved. They're not the most tech-savvy bunch. – corpico Oct 21 '16 at 16:15
  • You do not need to be tech-savvy to double-click a .zip archive file however if you're distributing an application update for a Windows program, then just distribute it in a proper Windows Installer Executable as a single .exe/.msi file. – user3439894 Oct 21 '16 at 16:23
  • 2
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is not about Apple software or hardware – user151019 Oct 21 '16 at 19:24
  • 2
    This question does not appear to be about Apple hardware or software within the scope defined in the help center. – grg Oct 21 '16 at 20:25

Creating a zip file for distribution using Windows.

Right click on the Desktop and select New->Folder, as shown below.


Rename the "New Folder". I used the name "Stuff", as shown below.


Drag and drop the desired files to this folder. When finished , right click on the folder and select Send To->Compressed (Zipped) folder.


The file "Stuff.zip" will be created, as shown below.

Note: The .zip file extension may be hidden on your machine.


You now can distribute the zip file as you would a dmg file. The recipient normally just double clicks on the zip file to open and then can copy files from the opened window.

  • Looks like I'll have to go with a zip file. I've tried everything—ISO, IMG, VHD….nothing has the ease of use of a DMG. – corpico Oct 21 '16 at 19:29

For Windows 7 & earlier, software is available to mount ISOs as though they were mounted CD/DVDs, but it requires the user to already be prepared for this.
I've previously used MagicISO quite successfully.

This has changed with Windows 10 - you can now either Mount or Burn an ISO

From Addictive Tips : How To Natively Mount And Burn ISO Images In Windows 10

To mount a disc image, select the file in Windows Explorer and go to the Manage tab. The Manage tab is always context aware and the controls in it change depending on the selected file type. When you select the ISO file, the Manage tab featuring Disc Image Tools has two options; Mount and Burn.

enter image description here

If you choose to Mount the file, you can see what’s inside and even execute files in it. enter image description here

  • Yeah Windows 10 solves the mounting problem, but most people are still on Windows 7. I'd prefer they don't have to download any third party software. – corpico Oct 21 '16 at 16:19
  • ... then it's back to my first draft of this answer... which was essentially "Nope. Aren't Macs wonderful;) You'd be best served just using Zip." – Tetsujin Oct 21 '16 at 16:20
  • Macs have spoiled us. – corpico Oct 21 '16 at 16:37

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