Windows Installer Wikipedia. Windows Installer previously known as Microsoft Installer,3codename. Darwin45 is a software component and application programming interface API of Microsoft Windows used for the installation, maintenance, and removal of software. The installation information, and optionally the files themselves, are packaged in installation packages, loosely relational databases structured as COM Structured Storages and commonly known as MSI files, from their default filename extensions. Windows Installer contains significant changes from its predecessor, Setup API. New features include a GUIframework and automatic generation of the uninstallation sequence. Windows Installer is positioned as an alternative to stand alone executable installer frameworks such as older versions of Install. Shield and NSIS. Before the introduction of Windows Store, Microsoft encouraged third parties to use Windows Installer as the basis for installation frameworks, so that they synchronize correctly with other installers and keep the internal database of installed products consistent. Important features such as rollback and versioning depend on a consistent internal database for reliable operation. Furthermore, Windows Installer facilitates the principle of least privilege by performing software installations by proxy for unprivileged users. Logical structure of packageseditA package describes the installation of one or more full products and is universally identified by a GUID. A product is made up of components, grouped into features. Windows Installer does not handle dependencies between products. ProductseditA single, installed, working program or set of programs is a product. Create Msi From Installed Software Programs' title='Create Msi From Installed Software Programs' />A product is identified by a unique GUID the Product. Code property providing an authoritative identity throughout the world. The GUID, in combination with the version number Product. Version property, allows for release management of the products files and registry keys. A package includes the package logic and other metadata that relates to how the package executes when running. For example, changing an EXE file in the product may require the Product. Create Msi From Installed Software Programs' title='Create Msi From Installed Software Programs' />Describes how to use Group Policy to remotely install software in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2003. Adobe Flash Player as msifile Howto get. The normal download page from Adobe for the flash player offers only installers as exefiles. It is not possible to extract. Your use of the packages on this site means you understand they are not to be used for organizational or production purposes and they are not supported or guaranteed. Code or Product. Version to be changed for the release management. However, merely changing or adding a launch condition with the product remaining exactly the same as the previous version would still require the Package. Code to change for release management of the MSI file itself. FeatureseditA feature is a hierarchical group of components. A feature may contain any number of components and other sub features. Smaller packages can consist of a single feature. More complex installers may display a custom setup dialog box, from which the user can select which features to install or remove. The package author defines the product features. A word processor, for example, might place the programs core file into one feature, and the programs help files, optional spelling checker and stationery modules into additional features. ComponentseditA component is the basic unit of a product. Each component is treated by Windows Installer as a unit. The installer cannot install just part of a component. Components can contain program files, folders, COM components, registry keys, and shortcuts. The user does not directly interact with components. Billing Software For Chartered Accountants Of Alberta. Components are identified globally by GUIDs thus the same component can be shared among several features of the same package or multiple packages, ideally through the use of Merge Modules. Key pathseditA key path is a specific file, registry key, or ODBC data source that the package author specifies as critical for a given component. Because a file is the most common type of key path, the term key file is commonly used. A component can contain at most one key path if a component has no explicit key path, the components destination folder is taken to be the key path. When an MSI based program is launched, Windows Installer checks the existence of key paths. If there is a mismatch between the current system state and the value specified in the MSI package e. This process is known as self healing or self repair. No two components should use the same key path. Setup phaseseditUser interfaceeditThe user interface phase typically queries the target system, displays an installation wizard and enables the user to change various options that will affect the installation. However, the user interface sequence should not make any changes to the system, for the following reasons A user may install or uninstall an MSI package in passive mode or silent mode, bypassing this phase entirely. Passive mode bypasses the user interface phase but shows a graphical progress bar. Silent mode shows nothing. During installation, information gathered in this phase may be supplied beforehand through the command line interface. The user interface sequence runs with user privileges, and not with the elevated privileges required during installation. ExecuteeditWhen the user clicks the Install button in a typical MSI installation wizard, installation proceeds to the Execute phase, in which software components are actually installed. The Execute phase makes system changes, but it does not display any user interface elements. The Execute phase happens in two steps clarification needed Two mode or two steps Do both runImmediate mode. In this phase, Windows Installer receives instructions, either from a user or an application, to install or uninstall features of a product. The requests cause the execution of sequences of actions, which query the installation database to build an internal script describing the execution phase in detail. Deferred mode. In this phase, the script built in immediate mode is executed in the context of the privileged Windows Installer service. The script must be executed by a privileged account because of the heterogeneity of the scenarios in which a setup operation is initiated. For example, elevated privileges are necessary to serve on demand installation requests from non privileged users. To run with elevated privileges, however, the package must be deployed by a local administrator or advertised by a system administrator using Group Policy. RollbackeditAll installation operations are transactional. In other words, for each operation that Windows Installer performs, it generates an equivalent undo operation that would revert the change made to the system. In case any script action fails during deferred execution, or the operation is cancelled by the user, all the actions performed until that point are rolled back, restoring the system to its original state. Standard Windows Installer actions automatically write information into a rollback script package authors who create custom actions that change the target system should also create corresponding rollback actions as well as uninstall actions and uninstallation rollback actions. As a design feature, if applied correctly this mechanism will also roll back a failed uninstall of an application to a good working state. Other featureseditAdvertisementeditWindows Installer can advertise a product rather than actually install it. The product will appear installed to the user, but it will not actually be installed until it is run for the first time by triggering an entry point by means of a Start menu shortcut, by opening a document that the product is configured to handle, or by invoking an advertised COM class.