We just got a KACE 1000!  Ok now what?  J

We are finding out that almost every install is a little different.  Some installers don’t like to run as Local System so the Manage Installations section won’t work and some don’t like to run when there is no user logged in.

Some background:  We have around 250 workstations in our environment.  We used to (and still do) perform installs/patching by waking up a group of workstations during the night time or weekend and then log on as local admin via remote desktop and run the installs manually by running a batch script that is located on a network share.  The same network share also hosts our install files.  Some of our users do not shutdown their systems or close / save out of their desktop applications so we would have to log on as them, close any open applications /save any data, log out and then log on as admin.  That being said how do you all deal with pushing out installs at night when users are still logged in and have open applications?

 Other Questions:

Do you all find that a lot of applications don’t install via Managed Installs and you need to use Scripting?

Do you all deploy apps when users are logged in and at the office working on their machines? 

Is there a best practices guide?

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check out the links provided in this other question's answers


Answered 10/17/2012 by: SMal.tmcc
Red Belt

  • Definitely, jverbosk linked some great information there.
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Unless the application installed to the user, not the machine and as long as it doesn't need a reboot, your user's login should not be affected.  That is something you definitely need to test in your environment however.

There really isn't a best practices guide that I'm aware of.  I believe this is because there is a wide variation between applications and how they need to be configured for deployment.

There are webex sessions that the KACE training department puts on that might be helpful:

K1000 KKE's: https://support.software.dell.com/k1000-systems-management-appliance/kb?k=KKE

What I'd recommend is installing each application individually on a test system using psexec: https://www.kace.com/support/resources/kb/article/How-to-mimic-running-a-script-as-Local-System-User-Scripting

I like using virtual machines for this because you have the ability to revert to a snapshot when something inevitably goes awry.

What the psexec install does is tell you if the application can be installed using LocalSystem: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/ms684190%28v=vs.85%29.aspx

The KBOX uses LocalSystem to install with in Managed Installs and in scripts (unless you specify "run as" in an online script).

Past that, the KBOX is expecting a MSI file and handles those pretty well most of the time.

That's not to say that it can't do .exe files, because it can, you just have to configure manually and check the box for "don't prepend msiexec.exe".

With either scripts or managed installs, make sure your file (msi/exe) is at the root of the zip file if you zip it up.  Unless you specify a path, the KBOX doesn't know how to navigate through folders once the file is unzipped.

Also, managed installs will automatically unzip your installer, scripts will not.  You will have to add an unzip step.

An example of an application that is difficult to deploy would be iTunes for Windows.  It's an .exe file so it should be simple right?

Not if you want to deploy silently.  You have to extract the .exe with 7zip/WinRar to get the MSI files.  From there, you create a batch file to run the individual MSI files (there's 5 or 6).

This link shows more what I am talking about when needing to extract an .exe: http://www.msiwisdom.com/articles/apple/292-apple-itunes-10-7-0-21

More info on the iTunes install: http://www.itninja.com/question/customized-silent-install-of-quicktime-and-itunes

Answered 10/17/2012 by: jknox
Red Belt

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Thanks for the info!  

Recently I had a single .exe for MS Mobile Device Center for Win 7 x64 and I tried to install it using a MI.  It did not work.  I then tested the .exe using psexec and it did not work as local system.  I then tried to create a batch file with a runas command, but it seems the runas command did not want to use the password that was supplied and the batch file, it prompted me for the password even though it was part of the command line; so I was not able to do a runas admin for the MI.  I ended up doing a script that calls a bat file on our network to do the install.  I set the script to run as admin.  Then I found out the MS install did not work when no user was logged in.  In the Run Status Logs when no user was logged in, the script would fail and it stated "Skipping 'Windows Mobile Device Center' because not allowed to execute logged off".  So I sent an email to the users letting them know I was planning to push an install.  I also set it up to Alert User so they would have an idea when it was about to run.

Prior to KACE, we could create a bat file, rdp to remote machine, log on as admin and then run the bat script to install.  It usally always worked as expected.  Using KACE there has to be some testing done prior to pushing out the deployment and that testing seems to take longer than it's worth if the install is just for 3 machines.  I'm just trying to figure out when should I use KACE and when should I just do it the old manual way and how should we use KACE when we are pushing out Windows Updates or Installs and the user left their applications open and is still logged on....grr  

Am I doing something wrong or is it a bumpy ride when starting KACE?

Answered 10/18/2012 by: jpastrano
Purple Belt

  • You would use runas in the script, not the batch file.
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