We would like to configure some of the .msi files that we are pushing out and are looking for a tool that would allow us work with the settings of the installer. Does anyone have suggestions of a good tool that has worked for them?

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  • ORCA is free

  • I'll second nshah's Orca recommendation
  • Thanks for the replies - we have used Orca in the past and while it's ok, we've found it a bit clunky - anybody else have a product on the market?
  • can you clarify your 'java loads' bit??
    • We are trying to find if there is a way through the installer to make the java install 1) silent and 2) if possible, deny updates - thanks
  • Just a java install, oh yes, there is loads of ways of doing that. Have a look at the blogs. The latest versions are 'better'. Install the EXE, get the extracted MSI but just the Java MSI NOT the AU.msi (Automatic updates) install the Java MSI silently, job done. (New versions also put shortcuts in the start menu). Also bear in mind every single version of java is different, this might change for future one, and is definitely different for 1.6 versions.
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Community Chosen Answer



Microsoft has a free tool called ORCA that allows you to modify MSI files.  I use it all the time.



Answered 05/07/2014 by: tryitout
White Belt

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Answer this question or Comment on this question for clarity



Orca is pretty much the only free tool out there and is really only used to change a typo in the properties table of an MSI/MST - anything beyond that and it gets crazy confusing for most of us. 

After Orca, you have to "pay to play".  Since Wise Package Studio is dead, AdminStudio from Flexera is pretty much the only tool in the market.  Yes, there are others to choose from, but they have very limited support and not as much capabilities as AdminStudio.  Flexera must have 98.997% of the market and using any other tool is not going to help you learn the details of MSI technology because they have their own propreitary way to creating MSI's which do not conform to the standards Microsoft established 20 years ago.

You could mention MSI Studio, but that only exists as a module within ChangeBASE from Dell Software, so that could be an option if you need to leverage the testing tools offered by CB.

Answered 05/07/2014 by: vjaneczko
Eighth Degree Black Belt

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Orca is a bit hard core, but its my choice. What deployment tool are you using? Flexera offer a free 'limited' tool set for SCCM, Altiris & LANDesk. Infopulse have a useful & reasonably priced tool.

Answered 05/07/2014 by: Badger
Red Belt

  • We're using KACE and are looking for something that could modify the java loads.
    • can you explain the 'java loads' a bit more???
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Orca is the only free option that allows you to perform low-level MSI editing. Of course, you need to know MSI tables and understand what you do.

Another set of tools include AdminStudio and Advanced Installer. AdminStudio is more powerful, more expensive and more complicated. AdvancedInstaller is the lighter and cheaper option. The recommended MSI Studio seems to be dead from 2011.

I recommend you to start from Orca because it's free, just to understand your goals and formulate your requirements to the commercial editor.

Answered 05/26/2014 by: ganymede13906
White Belt

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