Hello,

I was just wondering what everyone's opinion is on just packaging files for delivery to a machine. The situation is Microsoft Office templates that reside in C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\1033\

Our firm is constantly releasing custom and revised templates which get dumped to that directory from a shared network point via login script (script gets long and messy after time)

I was considering building an MSI package which contains all our custom templates, then during install just dump the files to the local directory. Good idea?

Also, should I create anything else in the MSI -- ex. a Registry entry, to verify that the package/templates were delivered? Or is just the entries that the MSI package creates sufficient?

I was thinking about generating the MSI via a Snapshot method (have a clean system, snapshot 1, dump the templates down, snapshot 2, create MSI). Good idea?

I look forward to hearing your thoughts...
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Have your packaged Office? Can't you just redirect where Office looks for it's templates and point it at the network location?
Cheers
Answered 04/19/2007 by: fuz_kitten
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fuz,

Thanks for the reply. I also thought of doing it this way -- I am new the firm, and was unsure of why it was done this way in the past (copy all templates local).

The only thing I can think of is all the mobile (laptop) users, when they are off the network and traveling, they will not have access to network resources (and no access to the templates). This would not work in that scenario, correct?
Answered 04/19/2007 by: JdotQ
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In that case I would probably make a separate package with the templates in – its going to be less hassle that adding them to the Office package.
Answered 04/20/2007 by: fuz_kitten
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fuz

I agree, I feel going down that route would be the best.

In your opinion, should I include any registry changes/additions to confirm that the package was deployed? Or will the built-in functions of the MSI handle this itself?

I was basically going to snapshot just the templates directory -- is this sufficient? Should I include anything else?
Answered 04/20/2007 by: JdotQ
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Windows will add your package to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Installer\Products\<product id>. If you chose too your MSI will add it’s self to Add Remove Programs also.

What packaging tool are you using? You don’t really need to do a snap as you know what files you want and where you want them to go.
Answered 04/20/2007 by: fuz_kitten
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fuz,

Thanks for the reply and the info. I'm using AdminStudio 7.5

Good point about not needing to snapshot. I'll give both a shot and see what turns up.

Thanks again for the help and suggestions [:)]
Answered 04/20/2007 by: JdotQ
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Just another quick update...

Yea, I don't know why I thought snapshooting would be easier [8|] I already have the package built (5 minutes later [;)]) using AdminStudio

Another question on matter of opinion...

For example, I have 5 template files -- right now they are setup to be all under Component1 of the Feature1. With this design, only 1 key file can be set out of the 5. Not good if you want to build in 'file checking' to make sure all the templates are present.

I was thinking to break off each template file into its own Component under Feature1. So "template1.dot" would reside inside Component1 of Feature1. "template2.dot" would reside inside Component2 of Feature1. "template3.dot" would reside inside Component3 of Feature1. Etc.

This would allow each file to be a key of Feature1 -- allowing for repair if missing.

Good idea? Bad idea? Opinions?
Answered 04/20/2007 by: JdotQ
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There’s no problem having 1 component for each file, in fact MS encourage it. I’m sure you can set AdminStudio to adhere to different component rules – you sure can in Wise.

Here’s some stuff to read…
Organizing Applications into Components

Component Rules 101

Right, pub time for me!
Have a good weekend
Charlie
Answered 04/20/2007 by: fuz_kitten
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Charlie,

Thanks for the good links. Enjoy the weekend and the pub [:D]
Answered 04/20/2007 by: JdotQ
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umm you know it would be much easier to dump the templates on a DFS or something. Word has a setting called workgroup templates which can be pointed to a network location

then all you do is dump the templates on the network share job done.
Answered 04/22/2007 by: jmcfadyen
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jmc,

I agree that just updating a network share and having Word point it would be the easiest solution.

Unfortunately, I don't believe this would work with mobile users that are traveling and off the network - unless I am misunderstanding something?
Answered 04/23/2007 by: JdotQ
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