The Realm of the Verbal Processor

Jarvis's Ramblings

Office 2007 Install Issue

Erik sent the following question re: a special issue with installing Office 2007.

We are in the process of trying to push out office 2007 w/SP2 w/o Access and Publisher and for it to uninstall Outlook 2003, but leave everything else and for it to do it unattended and silent. Now I did create the .MSP file which does this and it works great, but before our company decided to do this in an organized way, they were giving Excel 2007 out for people to try or people don’t have SP2 for Office 2007. Now I have tried everything to create an SMS package (SMS 2003) that will work, but if I just send out the package with the .MSP file it prompts people to interact with it if they already have anything part of Office 2007 on their computer. Now we created a package in sms that will uninstall office 2007, and it’s linked to another package in sms to reinstall office 2007, but it wants a restart on the computer before it will reinstall office 2007. Now if you guys know a way that will work without uninstalling office 2007 first that great too. I’ll take an ideals at this moment.

You do have an interesting problem. Because your company chose to give out part of Office 2007 before the full deployment was packaged and prepared, you will likely have some careful steps to take for those computers.

One way to handle that would be to create a collection to locate the users that have Excel 2007 already installed. From your description, it sounds like those are the only ones that won’t install silently at this point. You may need to communicate with those users to prepare them that a reboot will be required as part of this install. If you send this as a non-mandatory advertisement, they can choose when to do the installation at a time when a reboot won’t affect them as much. I would tell them to just plan to run it when they leave for lunch.

Without building out a similar scenario in my demo environment to test it, I don’t know offhand of a way to do this without uninstalling Excel first. I’m actually a bit surprised that the installation that you made silent still asked for user input. Did you follow my instructions in this post?

October 28, 2009 - Posted by | ConfigMgr


  1. We did something similar. We moved to Exchange 2007 and wanted to push out Outlook 2007 before doing the rest of office. We built the MSP and package to upgrade Outlook only, then built another MSP for adding in the rest of Office. This was a long time ago, so I just looked at it again for a refresher, and I don’t see anything special about it. The feature installation states are set to everything we want, including the previously installed Outlook. It just ignores it if it’s already installed. And everything else is upgraded (or removed, depending on what you set in that section). So my guess is something’s not quite right in either your MSP or package. We’re also on SCCM, but that shouldn’t matter.

    Or…if you have a different product key for your existing Excel installation vs. your new office installation…that could make Windows Installer just a little cranky. Definitely run into that one….

    Comment by Matt | October 29, 2009

  2. Excellent info Turk. I hadn’t thought about the possibility of a different product key.

    Hopefully your info will help Erik better than my post did!

    Comment by Jarvis | October 29, 2009

  3. It’s the same product key, but when we try to push out office 2007 with the .msp it works fine for the people who don’t have any Office 2007 products, but if they do have anything office 2007 it takes them to the screen that ask them if they want to remove, repair, or change. Then I tried through the command line setup.exe /adminfile SpartechPush.MSP and it says that it only can be ran on inital setup. Does anyone have an example of their .msp so I can compare with mine?

    Comment by Erik | October 29, 2009

  4. What do you have for your “Remove previous installations” section?

    Comment by Matt | October 29, 2009

  5. Okay…it’s making more sense now as to why the user’s are getting an attended installation…it’s skipping the execution of your MSP file entirely.

    Here’s a possibility…there appears to be a way to skip the reboot on the uninstall which would enable you to use the chained uninstall/reinstall option. Check out the end of this link:

    The last line of that thread has a guy using the config.xml option during setup and adding a setting in the config.xml to:

    It appears possible to use that in the uninstall and then do an immediate reinstall.

    Let me know if that works or not.

    Comment by Jarvis | October 29, 2009

  6. Right now the user’s have Office 2003, the .MSP file which we created should uninstall only Outlook 2003 and leave anything else from Office 2003 alone. Then it should install Outlook, Excel, Word, and PowerPoint 2007. Now it does that if they only have Office 2003. Now if they have anything office 2007 it goes to the remove, repair, or change screen. Just incase I forgot to mention we are trying to do this through SMS 2003.

    Now I tried to run setup.exe /config uninstall.xml /uninstall ProPlus in the command line and it works, it uninstalls office 2007 and does restart and then we run the .MSP through the command line right after that and it works fine, but as soon as we put it in SMS it will run the package, but sms will not run the install till they restart the computer.

    Comment by Erik | October 29, 2009

  7. This is the uninstall.xml:

    Configuration Product=”ProPlus”
    Display Level=”no” CompletionNotice=”no” SuppressModal=”yes” NoCancel=”yes” AcceptEula=”yes” /
    Logging Type=”standard” Path=”%temp%” Template=”Microsoft Office Professional Plus Setup(*).txt” /
    Setting Id=”Reboot” Value=”never” /
    Setting Id=”SETUP_REBOOT” Value=”never” /
    OptionState Id=”ProductFiles” State=”Local” Children=”force” /

    Note from Jarvis: the commenting system on my blog host only allows limited html, and it was stripping out Erik’s quoted XML. I have removed the greater than and less than symbols from the beginning and end of each line to try to get around that limitation.

    Comment by Erik | October 29, 2009

  8. Erik,
    Based on your comment (#6) above, have you tried (outside of SMS…at the command line) running the uninstall command line with the no reboot option, and then running the installer immediately afterwards before any reboot? Does that work?

    If so, a “dirty” method of getting around this might be to have the command line in the SMS program be a batch file that has two lines…the uninstall and the install. I say dirty because you won’t get any meaningful exit code in the event of a failure.

    Comment by Jarvis | October 29, 2009

  9. Now I’m learning this stuff as we go, how would i do this in a batch file and then how would i have to setup the package in SMS?

    Doing it on the computer from the command line it will uninstall office and then without a reboot we can run the installer right after and it works fine. It just messes up in SMS.

    Comment by Erik | October 29, 2009

  10. First…you might want to check your settings on the SMS program for the uninstaller. Ensure that the settings are set correctly…although it is probably getting the exit code from the uninstaller stating that it needs a reboot. Double check those setting to be safe though.

    For the batch file…simply create a batch file and put it in the source folder for your SMS package. The batch file should contain two lines…the uninstall command line that you are currently using and the install command line that you are currently using. (I am assuming that you are currently using a single SMS package with two programs…the uninstall and the install.)

    One gotcha for using a batch file is that the program settings must be set to use a drive letter…the option to run from a UNC path will fail.

    Comment by Jarvis | October 29, 2009

  11. Right now it’s setup on SMS with two different packages and one advertisement. There is one package for the uninstall and one package for the install. Just in the install package we checked the option to run another package first and directed it to the uninstall package so that it will run first.

    Comment by Erik | October 29, 2009

  12. Note: in my response I am using the words “Package” and “Program” meaning the technical term that SMS uses in the console. (i.e. there is a software distribution Package, and a Program is underneath the Package.) Just want to make sure we are talking about the same thing.

    If I understand you correctly, you have two SMS Packages that both have Office 2007 as their source files. Under each Package, you have a single Program…one has the uninstaller, the other has the installer.

    If that is the case, you only need one SMS Package. Choose one of them and create both the uninstall program and the install program underneath it.

    Actually…since we are talking about doing the batch file…the batch file is part of the source, and there is one program whose command line is simply the name of the batch file.

    Comment by Jarvis | October 29, 2009

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