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deploying adobe reader via GP

Posted on 2010-09-07
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I'm familiar with deploying software in group policy from an academic standpoint but don't have much practical experience. I'd like to have my entire environment up to date with version 9.3.4, currently we are a mix of different versions from 6 to 9.*. If I deploy the .msi package to all of these machines, will it just install over the existing installs with no problem or should I deploy by upgrading the various installs we have piecemeal?
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Question by:joshuasanders
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oztrodamus earned 300 total points
ID: 33623406
You can run different versions of Adobe on the same PC so no I do not believe the installer will uninstall the older version before installing the new version. Going foward in your software deployment policy I believe you can set the option to uninstall the software being replaced, but this will not affect the current enviornment.

I'd push out the new Adobe software using a policy as you want, and then manually uninstall the older version when you have time. By default the newer version will be the version used when opening PDF documents.
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by:tojorand
tojorand earned 200 total points
ID: 33627358
I agree with oztrodamus on manually uninstalling the old versions.  You will have to anyway.  Plus, you will know the machine is cleaned up and that you don't have any old Adobe security issues hanging out there.  It takes some time and your work is loaded at the front end of the project, but I think it's worth it in the long run.  Once you get the 9.3.4 version installed with the GPO, you can add a new package with the latest patch and tell it to upgrade the old version.  Simple as that.

Not too long ago I went though the same process you're asking about and want to offer a suggestion for you to consider.  On the share you will store your administrative install points, I recommend a folder called Adobe Reader with subfolders for the different versions.  That way you have distinct installation points for each version and can manipulate them without affecting the current package in deployment.  Sometimes I mess up applying a new patch and have to start over.  A few times I've had a version get stuck when the GPO tries to upgrade it and had to go to the machine and use the install point to manually install and then uninstall the software to clean it up.  Basically, it's always good to have a backup (or two, or three...).  :)

You probably have already looked at this stuff, but here are links for Adobe Reader group policy deployment and the Reader customization tool:

GP Deployment:  http://www.adobe.com/devnet/acrobat/pdfs/gpo_ad_9.pdf

Customization Wizard Download:  http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/detail.jsp?ftpID=3993

Best of luck to you!
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