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How can I convert exe to msi?

Posted on 2008-06-19
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Last Modified: 2013-11-13
I want to deploy software from the server using GPO so I need to make msi file. I installed wininstall LE and tried to make msi but I can not work it out. I can convert exe to msi but when I launch msi, it stops with error.

This is the error message:
Error 1309. Error reading from file: C:\Documents and Settings\Admin\Desktop\Program Files\Common files\Intel\ataplugin\ATAPlugin.ax Verify that the file exists and that you can access it.

I am trying to make msi for X-Lite.Does anyone have any idea?
Thank you
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Question by:nichiaiinc
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by:Vadim Rapp
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please produce the log and post it here.

msiexec /l*v c:\install.log /i myproduct.msi
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by:matrixnz
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Try Install2Go - http://www.dev4pc.com/ rather than package the app using snapshot, you can run the setup.exe silently (if it has silent switches) directly via the MSI itself.

Cheers
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by:nichiaiinc
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Thank you for your response.

>vadimrapp1
This is the log file. Please check it and if you see any problem please let me know.

>matrixnz
OK, I am going to try Install2Go as well.

Thank you,
install.log
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by:Vadim Rapp
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According to the log file, your installation is trying to copy that file from the same location where it's going to be installed.

I'd think what happened is this: when you repackaged and built the msi, you built  it as uncompressed with external files, so the files it was going to install were in the same directories where they are about to be installed. Then you probably uninstalled the original installation, and these files were removed. Now when you try to install, the source files are not found.

You have to copy over all the source files to another location (for example to a subdirectory of the project with your repackaged installation), and re-source them in the installation from that location.

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by:Vadim Rapp
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> you can run the setup.exe silently (if it has silent switches) directly via the MSI itself.

I wonder what's going to happen when such "installation" is about to be uninstalled. Not to mention repaired.

If wrapping the exe into the msi is acceptable, there's an even simpler way - zap file. See http://thelazyadmin.com/blogs/thelazyadmin/archive/2005/05/16/Publishing-Applications-with-ZAP-Files.aspx

IMHO, the title of that blog accurately describes the approach :-)
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by:nichiaiinc
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Thank you for your quick response.

>You have to copy over all the source files to another location (for example to a subdirectory of the project with your repackaged installation), and re-source them in the installation from that location.

How can I do this with Wininstall? I do not see any option when I start "after snapshot".

Thank you,
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by:Vadim Rapp
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Sorry, I'm not familiar with WinInstall. If you don't see the way to do it automatically, then you have to do it yourself - go over all the files, copy them, then change source path in wininstall.

Alternatively, you might compile the installation into single msi while the source files are still in place- the files would be placed inside msi then. But, again depending on the capabilities of wininstall, you might become unable to make changes later and recompile it.

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by:matrixnz
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The problem is the file is a single innosetup compiled executable file, which may or may not include com objects etc..  Wininstall le uses snapshot technology, i.e. taking a before and after shot of a master system than compiles the changes into an msi.  As I mentioned before you can use CustomActions to execute the exececutable with the /verysilent /norestart option for the InnoSetup file, you can also uninstall silently again this could be set up as a CustomAction with the Condition Remove=All so that it only excutes on uninstall not during the install.

Cheers
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by:matrixnz
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Also I'm assuming X-Lite Softphone is that correct or is it a different program altogeather?

Cheers
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by:nichiaiinc
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Thank you everyone. I wanted to use Wininstall but I think it is not right one for me. X-Lite Softphone is the software I tried to convert, I tried Installer2Go and I could make msi with silent install. I made test.msi for X-Lite Softphone, when I run test.msi it makes test and X-Lite3.0 on the list of Add/Remove Program in Control panel. If I want to uninstall software, I have to uninstall test and X-Lite3.0. I prefer to show 1 program on the list. Can I avoid to show 2 programs on Add/Remove Program somehow?

Thank you,
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by:Vadim Rapp
Vadim Rapp earned 100 total points
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> Can I avoid to show 2 programs on Add/Remove Program somehow?

This is another consequence of the fact that this is not true installation but only a wrapper that launches the real exe installation, so you see the wrapper as one product, and the product installed by setup.exe as another.

To avoid, you need to do exactly what you did initially - repackage. To avoid your initial problem with repackaging, consider doing what I suggested in ID:21828190 .

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matrixnz earned 400 total points
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Or as I mentioned in my last post add the following Custom Action in Installer2Go

uninst...exe (installed with X-Lite Softphone installation)
Command Line Parameters of: /verysilent /norestart
Change the Scheduled Installation to: Before Uninstalling

So when you go to uninstall it will run the uninstall script silent then remove the msi installer, however two installs will still appear within Add/Remove Programs, so you could then have a script after the installer, which deletes the registry key: HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\<Original X-Lite.exe GUID> this will remove it from the Add/Remove Programs leaving just the installer.

Cheers
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Author Closing Comment

by:nichiaiinc
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Thank you everyone. It was really great helps.
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