Files in Use Question

I don't know if this is the right place to put this question or not, so feel free to move it.

We manage our applications centrally via SMS and do our installations with the /qb-! option, which gives us a basic UI with no cancel button. Sometimes we have a need to patch an existing application that is deployed to our production users without changing the version (ie, shortcut name changes, new custom action, fix some other issue with the package, etc).

Currently, the way we are redeploying the app is to write a vbscript that we push which sees if the app is installed (product code in the registry), and if it is, uninstall and reinstall. This gives us a clean install of the app and seems pretty straightforward.

The issue is during deployment if the user has the existing version of the app open. What is the best way to uninstall/reinstall if the existing app is open? I know if you do a full UI, or a reduced UI, it will display the files in use dialog. That would be great, so I've been investigating using the reduced ui (/qr) option. The issue is that we don't want users to be able to cancel out of the installs as they are centrally managed. I have found an article that talks about removing the cancel button--works great.

However, when msiexec first launches, it says "Preparing to install" and has a cancel button there. How do I make use of the files in use dialog (maybe via the reduced UI option), yet remove the cancel button from that very first dialog that comes up that says "Preparing to install". Again, I can remove the cancel button once the install is actually occurring.

If there is a better way to handle patching existings apps which handles the concern of the existing app being open during the patching process, I'm all ears. How is everyone else handling this situation via SMS?

Thanks in advance.

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