Hi all,

I am new to application packaging.
I am right now learning how to repackage a vendor msi that is wrapped inside and exe. Need your help on the same.

Let me list down my background understanding of this topic so that you can help me clarify my query.

I am told that source files might exist in 2 flavors
1. Source as a setup.exe and the MSI embeded inside (example Adobe fonts etc...)
2. Source as Setup.EXE and loose MSI files along with the setup.exe

Secondly, the vendor MSIs may have external CAB files or uncompressed loose files.

If the MSI embedded inside exe is installed, it gets extracted at a temporay location %temp%.

Having said this, my quesry is...
1. For application that come in 2nd flavor (setup.exe+loose msi) i see that msi can be directly used to install allication instead of a using the setup exe. Why does the vendor provide an exe? Is there a logic behind this ?

2. To repackage a vendor MSI wrapped in exe (flavor 1), i am told that i should copy the msi that gets created in the %temp% folder and create a MST for it. However the loose files are not extracted to the temp folder. I am forced to copy it from the source media. How will i know which are the list of loose files i require ?

Please advice a step by step guide for re-packaging a vendor MSI
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ORIGINAL: emmy12
Please advice a step by step guide for re-packaging a vendor MSI
LOL...you *have* to be jokng, right? No-one has the time for that, my friend. Get yourself on a training course.

We can offer advice, of course.

First, NEVER re-package an MSI. Use a transform.

Second, you're correct in your assertion that MSIs can contain either embedded CAB files, external CAB files or uncompressed, raw files. Vendors provide Setup EXEs because users are used to double-clicking EXEs to run them but not double-clicking MSIs. Also, *some* vendors - for reasons best known to them - include functionality in the so-called 'stub' which really ought to be in the MSI. This is why, even for vendor MSIs, I *always* do a capture of a vendor's Setup.EXE after running *any* MSI/MST I have created to ensure I haven't missed anything like that.

To be sure you have all the source files, you're correct again - just copy the source media. Having said that, you can normally be sure to have a definitive source by performing an administrative install. By that I don't mean an install using administrator privileges (which, of course, the account you package with will require) but using the appropriate command line switch, normally '/A'. Some stubs will use a different switch but the vendor will normally provide documentation about how to perform administrative installs. If they don't, ask them for it! :)
Answered 02/18/2008 by: VBScab
Red Belt

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