Software Deployment Question

Excel Addin

10/06/2014 3200 views
Excel Automation Addin failing to load functions although it appears ticked in File ->Options -> Addins -> Manage -> Automation for a non-admin user after deployment. Activesetup triggers when the user login and creates the OPEN key after installing addin. Have tried giving permission to the respective folders and keys.It creates OPEN key with /A Server.Class name but when we try and check formulae in excel it returns #NAME. 

Any pointers would be very very helpful. 

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All Answers

>Excel Automation for add-ins only appears to work if Excel has been started at least once by the user
...which is why the script I mentioned opens Excel "silently".
Excel Automation for add-ins only appears to work if Excel has been started at least once by the user. - See more at: http://www.itninja.com/question/excel-addin-1#sthash.UGNEsv0B.dpuf
Answered 10/09/2014 by: VBScab
Red Belt

Hi ...Thanks.. yep I am aware of HKCU and HKLM Classes. have checked already  HKCU\Software\Classes but couldnt find anything. And yes excel has been started atleast once by the user. 
Answered 10/09/2014 by: nm_new
White Belt

Firstly, if you leave the default behaviour as installing to the 'OPEN' value, it will overwrite any other add-in that the user might have in the first position.

Adding add-ins to Office apps needs to be scripted, either by enumerating the 'OPENx' values and adding the next number in sequence (poor) or by using the relevant app's automation (good).

Search IT Ninja for Captain Planet's excellent VBScript for this purpose. It's designed for use in an MSI Custom Action.
Answered 10/06/2014 by: VBScab
Red Belt

Thanks for responding. It doesnt just create an OPEN key. It does check if there are any OPENx keys and create OPEN(X+1 ) . al this works fine. again this is done via custom action .

My problem is for some strange reason, ADDin functionality doesnt work for non-admin users. This has never happened in any of the previous versions. all it does is it returns #Name? when we try and query in excel .

please advise.
Answered 10/06/2014 by: nm_new
White Belt


This would suggest a permissions issue, or a trust issue. Check the trust settings in Excel.

Also, you appear to have opened three threads on this issue. Please close two of them.

Answered 10/07/2014 by: EdT
Red Belt

Thanks for the update. I have given permissions to INSTALLDIR and any Registry entries which was not required in the last version.

I have deleted the duplicate threads. looks like submit was refreshed twice. Apologies.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.  

Answered 10/08/2014 by: nm_new
White Belt

  • I wonder if the component containing the add-in has a mix of machine- and user-level data?

    Check Event Viewer for Windows Installer events where features are being self-healed. Non-admins won't have the appropriate permissions to write machine-level data and thus the healing will fail.

    Is the add-in downloadable? I may have a window to take a look at this today.
    • Hi Thanks for your response. There are no user based entries. HKCR and HKLM entries alone. Add-in is basically a dll . Not a typical VSTO or xlam. When we install server.classname it enables the addin and it becomes an inactive addin. Once the user uses one of the formula in excel, it becomes an active addin automatically. I have never had issues in any of the previous versions.

      Problem here is , I can see the OPEN key in HKCU after installation on that user / then the addin is ticked under managed addins and appears as Inactive addin as well. But when the user types in the formula it returns #Name
      • Are you aware that HKCR is a merge of HKCU/Software/Classes and HKLM/Software/Classes, with HKCU getting priority if there is a conflict of values ? You cannot assume there are no HKCU entries unless you have checked HKCU/Software/Classes. If you wish to ensure that all users get the settings in HKCR, it would be safer to convert the entries to HKLM/Software/Classes.
        Also, not sure if this is relevant to your situation, but Excel Automation for add-ins only appears to work if Excel has been started at least once by the user. Where this cannot be guaranteed then editing the OPENx keys in HKCU via code is realistically the only reliable solution.
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