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Office Software Thread, Office 2007 deployment - join the crusade in Technical; Want to let Microsoft know how dumb they are for breaking GPSI deployment in Office 2007? The GPO GUY suggests ...
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    ajbritton's Avatar
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    Office 2007 deployment - join the crusade

    Want to let Microsoft know how dumb they are for breaking GPSI deployment in Office 2007? The GPO GUY suggests you leave a comment on a blog post by a member of the Office Resource Kit team. Come on folks, let's kick their butts.

    The GPOGUY-- Group Policy Blog: Don't Like How they broke GP-based Deployment of Office 2007?

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    I am so there!! Their 'new' deployment method is junk and so is their new 'update' mechanism.

    Edit: Posted concise but polite comment, now to see if it makes it through moderation.
    Last edited by SYNACK; 29th May 2008 at 01:15 AM.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    In addition to this, slipstreaming for Office 2007 is different as well as the command switches too. One phrase comes to mind: "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    In addition to this, slipstreaming for Office 2007 is different as well as the command switches too. One phrase comes to mind: "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".
    Their new version of slipstreaming should not even qualify to be included under the same term. It does not actually replace the files in the installer so that the whole program is installed at once at the latest version. Instead it installs the base product at its original update level and then takes its time installing all of the update one by one over the top of the files that it has just installed.

    A massive waste of power and time in my opinion.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    Their new version of slipstreaming should not even qualify to be included under the same term. It does not actually replace the files in the installer so that the whole program is installed at once at the latest version. Instead it installs the base product at its original update level and then takes its time installing all of the update one by one over the top of the files that it has just installed.

    A massive waste of power and time in my opinion.
    I agree with you there. The MSP files are to be extracted into the \Updates folder. Office 2007 setup then picks up the new updates.

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    Geoff's Avatar
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    Slightly derailing the thread perhaps, but for those of us not 'blessed' with Office 2k7, what exactly is different deployment wise from previous versions?

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    Michael's Avatar
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    For your reference Geoff I have already created two guides. Office 2003 SP3 and Office 2007 SP1.

    So the slipstreaming and patching process is different for starters, but I believe also Office 2007 doesn't use the standard MSI method, which I think is why this thread was started!

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Angry

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Slightly derailing the thread perhaps, but for those of us not 'blessed' with Office 2k7, what exactly is different deployment wise from previous versions?
    With Office 2007 each application is split into its own MSI with one Enterprise MSI that is supposed to install the lot. Unfortunately the Enterprise MSI can only be run via the setup.exe or by group policy deployment which makes it irritating to test for one.

    Next up you have the issue that the Enterprise MSI is unable to upgrade 2003, it will try, uninstalling office 2k3 and wasting 25min installing almost all of it before it fails and has to rollback and reinstall Office 2k3 again.

    If you uninstall 2k3 first then their are still problems. MSTs are not supported and the only way to configure the Enterprise MSI is with an XML config file with rubbish documentation and no way to test it short of deployment. If you get this XML config slightly wrong it will waste 25min installing what it says is Office 2k7 but in actual fact is only the core components and the advertisement icons. Your first user to click on it then has to wait 10 minutes for it to install the rest.

    Now we come to the 'improved' customization. You can make customization packages with a wizard which are packaged as MSTs which you just put in the updates folder.

    Problem is the network install doen't pay any attention to the updates folder at all. Apparently you can script in a call to it in the XML file mentioned earlier but that little bit of it has not actually been implemented.

    Being AD based GPO you may expect to be able to simply tell AD to apply a patch to the installer package but again this is unsupported.

    Bottom line, the deployment options for GP are that broken that they are practically unusable unless you are willing to spend vast amounts of time tweaking the config file and leaving the updates up to WUS or running the actual setup.exe via a script.

    The kicker is that the 'new' and 'improved' methods of deployment such as in image Vista deployment and their payed for SMS deployment still work and are recommended as an alternative to the free widely used method that Office 2k3 shipped with.

    These faults are annoying enough without the so called slipstreaming method that they have brought out which I discussed earlier.

    /rant

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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    I rolled out 2007 in november and I thought the xml for the enterprise msi was fairly straight forward.

    The problem with it being "installed" but then spending time "configuring" after a user logged on was a real pain.

    I created a gpo to uninstall 2003, and then install 2007, but for some reason it didnt install Outlook 2007 doing it this way.

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    RabbieBurns's Avatar
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    I rolled out 2007 in november and I thought the xml for the enterprise msi was fairly straight forward.

    The problem with it being "installed" but then spending time "configuring" after a user logged on was a real pain.

    I created a gpo to uninstall 2003, and then install 2007, but for some reason it didnt install Outlook 2007 doing it this way.

    edit: I just let wsus take care of sp1 when it came out

    edit 2: hmm first edit seems to have created a second post sorry

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    contink's Avatar
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    This is the point where I thank my lucky stars that I purchased the 2003 media when we got new office licenses... I think I'll be steering clear of 2007 for a while.

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    Yeah the GP deployment was a mess, we did it on our admin network and ended up with...

    - some machines with 2007 installed OK
    - some with bits of 2003 left (usually Outlook) the rest 2007
    - some with 2003, 2007 not installed at all
    - some with 2007 missing serial numbers, profile problems

    In the end was having to do Office Installer cleanups to nuke 2003 then manual reinstalls of 2007, absolutely horrible! Since that I've abandoned GP software installs and use SMS for everything as I don't trust GP anymore

    Our old method used to be a blank image with software rolled down via GP, now I put as much as possible on the image as the new Microsoft products seem to be all over the place. Can't understand why they're making so many simple, glaring errors with their new stuff... very poor show imo

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    I've tried to post a comment to the blog but it hasn't appeared - not sure if that's because it's moderated or the guy doesn't want any more grief :-)

    I've never got the MSI to deploy with group policy. I've tried using a script but it's not easy to get it to work reliably.

    I know the GPO MSI method doesn't scale for thousands of simultaneous deployments but there must be a good few people who only want to deploy to a few hundred (eg we use MSIs for all our staff machines; we rarely do more than a few of those at a time so it's easy and quick. Even if we want to upgrade the software on a machines we stagger the updates to 50 or so machines at a time)

    If I were cynical I'd say this is Microsoft just trying to force us to buy deployment software :-)

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    gshaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post

    If I were cynical I'd say this is Microsoft just trying to force us to buy deployment software :-)
    Well it just so happens that Microsoft recommend SMS 2003 \ SCCM as the supported deployment method... what a coincidence :P

    Luckily we use it anyway and it's very cheap on Campus License

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    contink's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post
    If I were cynical I'd say this is Microsoft just trying to force us to buy deployment software :-)
    I'd say your cynicism was bang on there.. It's going to backfire though when all the techs find themselves looking harder at Openoffice or just stay back with 2003.



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