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Script to download and execute a VB exe

Posted on 2004-03-23
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Last Modified: 2010-04-06
I have been tasked with designing and writing a simple patching program/script which will 1) download an executable from a website, 2) shut down all instances of a particular program, 3) overwrite the program's exe file with the downloaded version, and then 4) restart the program.  I am assuming that the "shut down all instances" part requires an exe, unless there is some scripting language which can do so and will work on all versions of Windows 98+ and NT 4.0+.

So, unless all of the above can be done by a script, I will write a VB application that will do the above.  What I want to know is if there is some sort of script I can use so that the user can click on a link and not have to do anything else.  I.e. it is most preferable for the user to not even click "open" to download the exe -- the user would just click a link, and the program would download and run.  It is imperative that the script require no "extra" components installed on the system, where "extra" denotes anything other than the standard VB runtimes (the patch is for a VB program, so the runtimes will already be installed) and what all versions of Windows later than '98 have installed by default.
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Question by:labreuer
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Assisted Solution

by:sforcier
sforcier earned 250 total points
ID: 10661382
I'm pretty sure the only way to do this is to create an ActiveX control that web visitors would be prompted to download when they click the link. Otherwise, this would be a big security risk. I'm sure someone will sound off if I'm wrong.
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COBOLdinosaur earned 250 total points
ID: 10661472
It cannot be done with just script.  You will at the very least need an activeX control.  If this is for an Intranet you can probably build an HTA that will fully automate it, but if it is going across the Internet, there is virtually no chance that you will bet it work without user interaction, and it will get block at many firewalls.

Cd&
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Author Comment

by:labreuer
ID: 10661709
So basically the user would have to click "ok" in some form or another regardless of how this is done, so simply having him/her click on a link to an executable and telling him/her to choose "open" is the simplest solution?
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by:sforcier
ID: 10661812
basically, yes.
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by:labreuer
ID: 10662057
Keeping this open for a day; if nobody says it's possible (and shows how), I'll split the points between you two.
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Expert Comment

by:JNSTAUB
ID: 10665779
why not performing like MS, and let download a ZIP with the exe and a readme indicating to shut down the application, request the application path and so one.
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Author Comment

by:labreuer
ID: 10667314
More work for the user -- remember, the goal is to make the process as simple as possible for the user.  The application is relatively stateless, so it is quite reasonable to simply shut all instances down.

The application is already written (it took ~3 hours).
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by:JNSTAUB
ID: 10667598
so download a program (.exe) which run a script on the user machine to perform all the task.but the exe sould be launch manually by the customer.
did you agree that microsoft patchs our os without your approval?

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Author Comment

by:labreuer
ID: 10668769
JNSTAUB: try reading my last post (I said the application was already written to do the patching...)  I'm sorry if I were not clear enough.
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Expert Comment

by:COBOLdinosaur
ID: 10679264
Sorry we could not come up witha real solution for you.  Thanks for the A.  :^)

Cd&
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Author Comment

by:labreuer
ID: 10679932
Well, you said it wasn't possible and gave a good reason, which made the solution obvious.
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