How to deploy Office 2007 over the network without buying SMS or similar software

It's been answered over and over that GPO is not the right solution for Office 2007 deployment. And if you get to make it work, this works with some limitations and quirks. BDD 2007 deploys Vista + Office but not Office by itself. Does Mircorsoft expect you to buy SMS or similar to network deploy Office 2007???

I'm upgrading computers that received Office 2003 via GPO, so I can uninstall them the same way.

I have found lots of TechNet doc about this subject but haven't come accross one that shows a step by step process to achieve this.
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matrixnzConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Hi xperttech

Understand, personally I've always found WSUS best for patches updates etc...

You could try using PSExec, but you'd probably have to use a text file with machine names in it. then run a command that uses an Office MSP file for the install configuration.
xperttechAuthor Commented:
So, there is not such a thing as open software to inventory and push Office 2007 in a controlled way?
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Why not use a Computer Startup Script in Group Policy, basically create your custom MSP file using:
setup.exe /admin

Than in the Startup Script have something like

If Exist "%ProgramFiles%\Microsoft Office\Office12\Outlook.exe" Goto End
Goto Install

\\SERVER\SHARE\Setup.exe /adminfile YourMSPFile.MSP


xperttechAuthor Commented:
Matrixnz: Why not? Because we want to be able to "manage" the install later on as new updates/patches appear, which you know are a lot.
We are considerin ALTIRIS (Now Symantec) CLIENT MANAGEMENT SUITE if we have to purchase the software. Any thoughts, suggestions?
NJDEV1Connect With a Mentor Commented:
Matrixnz's solution makes sense. You could implement WSUS, which is free to manage updates but for initial deployment use the setup.exe /admin to create an MSP. Also you can extract MSP's from Office hot fixes and put them in the Updates folder of Office 2007. They will get installed along with Office.
xperttechAuthor Commented:
My issue with the script install (after the GPO remove of Office 2003) is that there is no way to track the installs and know if all succeeded. When you have 50+ workstations to handle this becomes an issue.
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