I'm trying to build an answer file for an app build in wise with a *.exe extension. The exe file has some logic build into which installs driver sets and a few other applications when installating eg Java

I'm just wondering if there is any way i can do an answer file for this exe as there will be a few user prompts for server names that are site expecific. Can anyone point me in the right direction, i'm trying to see if i can do this without extracting the exe and the msi inside, i'm afraid of breakig the package logic, would ideally like to pass the answers through.

The exe is build in Wise 5.6
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It's extremely unlikely that the EXE will have the logic for an answer file. Almost certainly it's just a wrapper for an MSI with, as you say, some additional logic which the original packger was too bone idle to add to the MSI.

Here's what I do with these suckers:
- Extract the MSI
- Create a transform for it
- Run the MSI/MST on test box/VM
- Use a lightweight snapshot tool (capturing in Wise/InstallShield is overkill)
- Run the vendor's EXE
- Complete the snapshot
- Add those changes to the MST (or a separate MST, if that suits)

You need to be careful if the EXE is installing stuff like JRE, as you don't want that crap in your snapshot. In those cases, I install the relevant dependencies first. For your final install, you can add those dependencies as separate installs. This obviously depends on how your apps are deployed.
Answered 03/19/2008 by: VBScab
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I have a similar problem. I tried using the .EXE /X swicth (thanks to bkelly's tip here), and got out many files, but no .MSI. Then I tried Universal Extractor 1.5 on the Wise .EXE, and I got even more files out of it, but no .MSI. Any advice on how I get the .MSI out of a Wise Installer .EXE?

If I download a 30day trial of the Wise Package Studio, can someone tell me the exact steps I need to extract this .MSI? I don't know, or need to know, anything else about the Wise Installer, except how to get the .MSI out of this .EXE. Sande
Answered 06/02/2008 by: snissen
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There's a simple way to check if an EXE uses an MSI.

- Delete the content of the workstation's %TEMP% folder. NOTE: this means whichever folder the environment variable %TEMP% resolves to, which may not necessarily be - and most likely will not be - C:\WINDOWS\TEMP.
- Run the set-up stub EXE as far as the 'Welcome' screen or whatever the first dialog is, where you'd normally click 'Next' to continue the installation.
- Look in the %TEMP% folder. If there's a randomly-named file with an MSI extension, that's the MSI you need. If there isn't an MSI, then it's not an MSI-based package.
Answered 06/03/2008 by: VBScab
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I should have mentioned that I already tried that basic technique, and it didn't work. (I'm an experienced repackager, but more in the InstallShield universe.) This installer creates only GL*.tmp files in the %TEMP% directory, and Orca says that none of them are .MSI files.

I know it's a Wise Installer package because it says so on the welcome dialog. It creates an Uninstall entry in the registry, but does not leave any .msi file anywhere on the hard drive that I can find. Can it be a Wise Installer package without using MSI technology? I thought Wise packages were always MSI-based.

Anyone else have any other ideas on this extraction? Anything else I can check, or information I can provide? Sande
Answered 06/03/2008 by: snissen
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ORIGINAL: snissen
I'm an experienced repackager, but more in the InstallShield universe.<snip>Can it be a Wise Installer package without using MSI technology?
Sande, Exactly the same as IS, Wise has a script capability (WiseScript) so yes, just because it says 'Wise Installer' on the dialogs, doesn't mean it's MSI-based.

AFAIK, WiseScript doesn't natively have support for answer files but I never use it so don't take my word as gospel. If I were in your shoes, I'd be starting up IS's Repackager. If all you want is an extract though, a simple admin install would suffice.
Answered 06/03/2008 by: VBScab
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ORIGINAL: mrcheeks

I'm trying to build an answer file for an app build in wise with a *.exe extension. The exe file has some logic build into which installs driver sets and a few other applications when installating eg Java

I'm just wondering if there is any way i can do an answer file for this exe as there will be a few user prompts for server names that are site expecific. Can anyone point me in the right direction, i'm trying to see if i can do this without extracting the exe and the msi inside, i'm afraid of breakig the package logic, would ideally like to pass the answers through.

The exe is build in Wise 5.6



I doubt you'll be able to add anything to this; wise script EXE's are just not designed to be all that flexible. Sounds like this was created (home grown from the sounds of it) for a specifit purpose; to install some drivers and set some settings. The likelihood that you'd be able to shoehorn something else in (like installing from a certain server location) is slim to none, although I have been successful in adding things to INI files.

It might be possible if you had the original Wise script project file (.WSE extension) which you could edit in Wise Script Editor. Wise Script Editor does have some UI capability, though I have not played around with it that much. And certainly MSI provides UI capability as well, which you could design if you have WPS.

I think what you're talking about is really more suited to VB. If you have time look into vb.net express edition which you can download from microsoft.
Answered 06/03/2008 by: aogilmor
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