Drain pineapple, reserving syrup. Add water to syrup to make 1 cup; heat until mixture is boiling. Dissolve gelatin in hot liquid; cool. Gently stir in ginger ale; chill until partially set.
Meanwhile, blend drained pineapple and cranberry sauce; fold into gelatin mixture. Turn into 9x9x2 inch dish (*Ruth Notes: I used an 11x7 dish); chill till firm.
Prepare dessert topping according to package directions. Fold in cream cheese; spread over set gelatin.
Toast pecans in 1 T of butter or margarine in moderate oven (350 degrees) about 10 mins; sprinkle over top of the salad. Chill.