Microsoft have released info on the progress of their next generation installer sofware, version 3.
"Since the general availability of Windows XP Service Pack 2, the Windows Installer team has received numerous inquiries about the status of the Windows Installer 3.0. We wanted to give everyone an update and pointers to where you can find the information you need. The Windows Installer 3.0 is released in three pieces:
The first piece is the actual bits that shipped as part of Windows XP Service Pack 2. Service Pack 2 is widely available through Windows Update as well as from here.
The second piece is the SDK documentation and tools that are available of the Windows XP Service Pack 2 SDK that is now available from here.
The final piece is the down level redistributable for Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 and 4, Windows XP, Windows XP Service Pack 1, and Windows Server 2003. Unfortunately, we have experienced a delay in making this redistributable available. We expect to make the redistributable available in September, but we do not yet have a firm date."