Currently, large corporations use enterprise-wide deployment mechanisms such as System Management Server (SMS) or Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) to deploy applications. These applications may include Windows Internet Explorer.
However, smaller organizations that do not use these deployment mechanisms use Active Directory distribution mechanisms to assign and to publish specific sets of applications to specific sets of individuals. To deploy applications in Active Directory environments, the application installer must be a Windows Installer package.
Earlier Internet Explorer 7 packages were not .msi files. Therefore, you cannot deploy the earlier packages in Active Directory environments. For the re-release of Internet Explorer Administration Kit 7 (IEAK 7), we have created a Windows Installer wrapper for IEAK 7 output packages. In this manner, organizations can deploy these packages in Active Directory environments. Then, corporations do not have to use enterprise-wide deployment mechanisms such as SMS or WSUS. Therefore, in Active Directory environments, the corporations can control the deployment of Internet Explorer on corporate-wide computers without requiring physical access to client computers.
The following examples are scenarios in which you can use the re-released IEAK 7 to deploy Internet Explorer 7.
You want to remotely deploy Internet Explorer 7 on multiple computers. You do not have enterprise-wide deployment mechanisms such as SMS or WSUS. However, you can use Group Policy in Active Directory environments.
By using the re-released IEAK 7 that contains the .msi file, you can deploy Internet Explorer 7 to the relevant organizational units (OUs) in Active Directory environments. You do not have to locate each computer to distribute CDs to install Internet Explorer 7. Or, you do not have to write scripts that run with administrative credentials to install Internet Explorer 7 on multiple computers.Note
When you use the .msi file, an additional entry is created in the Add or Remove Programs
item in Control Panel on the client computers. This entry cannot be removed even after you uninstall Internet Explorer 7. If you try to remove the entry, the setup for the package will run again.
You want to add some custom components such as toolbars to Internet Explorer 7. Additionally, you want to install all the latest updates. You can use IEAK 7 to install custom components. The whole process is transparent to you even though the packaging technology now uses .msi files.
When you use IEAK 7 to add some custom components such as toolbars to Internet Explorer 7, you cannot use the .msi file to deploy the customized version of Internet Explorer 7. This situation occurs because the .msi file may disallow other setups to be started within the .msi file. In these scenarios, you can use one of the following methods:
- Use the IESetup.exe file to deploy customized versions of Internet Explorer 7. The IEAK 7 Wizard generates the IESetup.exe file.
- Select the Install after system restarts option on the Add Custom Components screen of the IEAK 7 Wizard to be able to use the .msi file.
You want to deploy customized settings on computers that already have Internet Explorer 7 installed. You can create an .msi file and deploy the package in a similar manner to the different computers in Active Directory environments.
IEAK 7 can also create an .msi file together with a standard .exe file. Therefore, you can continue to use SMS. However, you can also use Group Policy in Active Directory environments to deploy Internet Explorer 7.
The following list describes the support that is available to create or to edit an .msi file:
- Use the WiX tool set to create an .msi file.
WiX is a Microsoft product in shared source. It is not shipped as part of the Microsoft operating systems. To download WiX, visit the following Web site: Microsoft provides third-party contact information to help you find technical support. This contact information may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this third-party contact information.
- Use Windows Installer to edit an .msi file.
Windows Installer supports low level APIs to open and to edit the Windows Installer database. The Msi.dll module is a part of the Windows Installer service.
This article describes the .msi file that IEAK 7 produces. The .msi file applies to the following Microsoft products:
- Internet Explorer 7 for Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2)
- Internet Explorer 7 for Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1)
For more information about how to use the WiX tool set to integrate setup development into your development process, visit the following Web site:
For more information about Windows Installer, visit the following Web site:
The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, about the performance or reliability of these products.