About WinINSTALL LE 2003

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WinINSTALL LE 2003 continues the legacy of being the first - and only - FREE MSI packager for Windows! No other company provides network administrators with a powerful NO-COST solution for creating and editing MSI packages. At OnDemand Software, we believe that administrators should never have to pay for a “Standard Edition” MSI packager, and the overwhelming success of WinINSTALL LE has proved that lots of folks agree with us.

WinINSTALL LE is the most widely used MSI packager in the world today.

Millions have been so satisfied with LE that they have upgraded to one of the other WinINSTALL product versions.

Our two additional versions - WinINSTALL MSI Packager and the flagship WinINSTALL product - are available under our normal licensing models.


WinINSTALL MSI Packager includes additional support for these MSI features:

  • Transforms (MST)
  • Patches (MSP)
  • Merge Modules (MSM)
  • Hierarchical package management
  • Conflict assessment
  • Package validation and automatic correction
  • and many other features that help take the headaches and mystery out of MSI packaging.

    Managing desktops is more than just packaging. WinINSTALL takes care of all of your software management and desktop availability needs with:

  • Full MSI packager functionality
  • Support for NAI (WinINSTALL native file format)
  • Deployment to all types of network directory groups
  • Multiple ways to install packages on the desktop
  • Reliable multicast replication
  • Operating system deployment and service pack installation
  • Comprehensive result reporting
  • Package validation and automatic correction
  • Conflict assessment
  • Hardware and software inventory
  • With its combination of power and flexibility, WinINSTALL is the most widely used software distribution product in the world today.

    To download an evaluation copy of the full WinINSTALL product go to http://www.ondemandsoftware.com today!


    What is a *.msi package

    A Windows Installer, or MSI, package is a database that contains instructions on how to install, modify, or remove an application using the Microsoft Windows Installer Service. MSI packages are self-repairing and can install the features of the application on an as-needed basis. Many Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) have started to provide Windows Installer packages for their applications, but some have not yet converted to this format. In addition, there are many older, non-MSI applications that are still in use. When these non-MSI applications are repackaged into MSI applications, they can take advantage of the various enhancements, such as self-healing and advertising, that are available to native MSI packages. WinINSTALL LE 2003 is the ideal tool for simple repackaging of a non-MSI application into an MSI application, giving it all of the capabilities that an MSI application can offer.


    The  WinINSTALL LE 2003 Discover Wizard

    Letting the Discover Wizard Build a Package Automatically

    With the WinINSTALL LE 2003 Discover Wizard, repackaging becomes a simple three-step process -

    With the WinINSTALL LE 2003 Console, you can modify an existing Windows Installer package regardless of how it was created. You can import an external Windows Installer package and use the WinINSTALL LE 2003 Console to modify it, or you can perform the entire process - creating and customizing a package - using only WinINSTALL LE 2003.

    You build packages with the Discover Wizard on a clean reference machine so that only those changes – and all of those changes – resulting from the installation of the application will be captured in the package. You simply invoke the Discover Wizard (installed on the WinINSTALL Server) remotely from the reference machine. In a series of six simple dialogs, Discover collects the following information from you:

    Discover uses the information you provide to perform a thorough analysis of the clean reference machine.  This is referred to as the ‘Before’ snapshot because it is a picture of the system before an application is installed, as opposed to the ‘After’ snapshot which is a picture of the same system after an application is installed. Discover then prompts you for the setup program of the application and exits. Once you have successfully installed the application, you invoke the Discover Wizard again.  Discover analyzes the system again, builds your package, and removes all of the temporary files that it created on the reference machine. (When you invoke Discover the second time, you are actually offered two choices - performing the ‘After’ snapshot or starting the process all over again. Whenever Discover finds temporary files on the reference machine, it gives you this choice. If you choose to abandon the ‘After’ snapshot and create a new ‘Before’ snapshot, you would normally need to restore the reference machine to a clean condition before actually running the Discover Wizard.)

    There is a utility that allows you to run the Discover Wizard from the WinINSTALL LE 2003 Console. The purpose of this utility is to provide administrators with a convenient way to become familiar with the Discover Wizard. You would never actually build a production package on the LE Console machine because, by definition, it is neither clean nor quiet if the WinINSTALL LE Console is installed and running. 

    To run Discover from the WinINSTALL LE 2003 Console, simply highlight Windows Installer Packages in the tree view and either click the Search Icon on the toolbar or select Run Discover … from the File menu.


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