Working with the AppDeploy Repackager 1.0

The AppDeploy Repackager was built with the sharing nature of the community in mind. You may use the AppDeploy Repackager to generate a new MSI from scratch, or you may use it to build an MSI from a project file you have downloaded. For more on the AppDeploy Repackager shareable file format, please click here.

Note: It is recommended that the AppDeploy Repackager be executed from a network share in order to minimize changes to your clean, test system being used to perform snapshots. Starting with a clean machine better ensures all changes made by the setup are executed so that they may be detected during the snapshot process. While you may need to install any dependencies for the software with which you are working, a "clean machine" is typically a designated test workstation with no more than the OS, service pack and necessary patches representing your target environment.

Creating a project file/MSI

  • Launch the AppDeploy Repackager
  • Press the Next button to begin
  • Select Create a project file based on system changes
    • Setup File Location: type or browse for the setup to be captured. Once selected the remaining fields will be filled based on file meta information when available.
    • Application Name: the name of the installation being captured
    • Version: the version of the installation being captured
    • Company Name: the company for the installation to be captured
  • Press the Next button to continue
  • A summary of what will be scanned is shown, but you can optionally press the Advanced button to modify what is to be included in the snapshot.
  • Press the Take Initial Snapshot button. On a clean machine (recommended) this should take only a couple of minutes-- progress is updated until complete.
  • Press the Launch Setup button to begin the installation. Run through the installation, launch the product, configure and license it if desired. When satisfied with the installation and configuration, click the Next button to continue.
  • Press the Second Snapshot button to perform a second scan of the system and compare for detected changes.
  • Next you may expand the included and excluded item lists to review the file contents of your package as well as what has been excluded. To exclude an item, select it from the list on the left, enter a description and press the >> button. To include an item that has been excluded, simply check it and press the << button. Selecting an excluded item will update the description box with the current description for the item. If you wish to update this, edit the text directly and press the Save button. When satisfied with the contents, press the Next button to continue.
  • A similar screen is displayed which operates in the same way, this time focused on the registry contents of your package with an opportunity to include/exclude as desired. When satisfied with the contents, press the Next button to continue.
  • This last screen lets you specify shortcuts as well as where the package and project files are to be generated:
    • For each shortcut you'd like to include, select the executable from the drop-down list and press the Select button. For each shortcut, you may update the display name and choose where the shortcut should be placed (Desktop, Program Menu, or both).
    • The default path for creating output is a sub-folder named "Packages" located from wherever the AppDeploy Repackager was executed. If running from Program Files, the folder will be created there, if run from a network path, the new folder will be generated there.
    • You can create a project file by pressing the Create Project File button, or create the project file and an MSI by pressing the Create Project File and Build MSI button.
  • With the results created, you may press the Finish button to close the application.

Building a MSI from a project file

  • Launch the AppDeploy Repackager
  • Press the Next button to begin
  • Select Build package based from project file. The remaining fields should populate automatically based on the contents of the project file, but you may update any if desired. When satisfied with the values shown, press the Next button to continue.
  • Next, you may review the contents of the project file and locate any files missing from the project. If a desired registry entry appears missing, launch the application, change program settings, exit and press the button to rescan for registry entries. Press the Next button to continue.
  • On this last screen you may press the Build MSI button to create an MSI based on the files and registry entries specified in the project.
  • With the results created, you may press the Finish button to close the application.