I'm still learning Installshield (I'm familiar with Wise).

Many applications are coming with the installshield-created MSI setup. (setup.exe, msi, instmsiw, file in folders etc). I'm not familiar with this setup. Is this an administrative install or should I be using this to create an administrative install?

I'm concerned about applying patches in the future.
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It's not an administrative install and I don't think it can create one either. (I may be wrong, check the options on that SETUP.EXE) It's really a legacy type of MSI install that requires InstallShield Script to be installed on the machine in order to function. Windows Installer isn't enough to handle it, so it's not a real MSI. That's what that ISSCRIPT.MSI thing is, SETUP.EXE will either install or upgrade InstallShield Script to get the machine up to par before the app is installed. As a result, it is incompatible with a lot of MSI distribution methods. It was great for quickly developing a snazzy CD install. Crap for MSI distribution tools.

Your best bet with these is to use the latest InstallShield to convert it to a real MSI. Open the Setup.exe with installshield and somewhere in there is an option to compile to MSI with no Setup.exe. Recompile it and the end result will be something that you're much more familiar with, a real MSI file.
Answered 03/22/2005 by: VikingLoki
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Viking is mostly correct. Most of the old legacy setup.exe's from InstallShield that have all of the files unzipped in the install source don't have an MSI stuffed in them, but a lot of new ones do. Usually they're just a Setup.exe with the InstallShield icon - "setup.exe /a" works on a lot of those.

It's only fresh in my mind because I just did one this morning [;)]

I'm very new here, but it's super nice to see so many good packagers in one place. I've been doing this for 5 years or so and I think this is the best resource I've found yet!
Answered 03/23/2005 by: Thaiboxer
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Actually, many do. Sometimes you have to unzip twice, sometimes it's in a self-extracting .exe zip file. Dig deep and you often find. Also keep in mind the release date and compare that to the development of MSI technology. Pre-msi and it's a legacy setup.exe, infancy of MSI and you probably have an InstallShield Script MSI in there, recent and it is (hopefully) a true MSI.
Answered 03/23/2005 by: VikingLoki
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Good point.

I was thinking mostly of the pre- and infancy- of msi installs. I've also had some luck cracking setup.exe's with WinZip - but I don't recall that any were from Installshield.
Answered 03/23/2005 by: Thaiboxer
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