Active Setup question

Posted on 2011-05-02
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-11-13
How do I determine whether application needs active setup?

I need step by step instructions since I am a beginner when it comes to packaging applications.

I am packaging Windows Live Essentials photo Gallery and I wanted to make sure it doe snot need Active Setup. Can anyone help?
Question by:YZlat
  • 2

Expert Comment

ID: 35507495
Get autoruns from http://live.sysinternals.com/autoruns.exe

It is a little known feature that it can compare before and after.

So run it - use "File > Save" to save a file.

Run your setup.

Re-run autoruns (or press F5 if it is still running), then do "File > Compare" and choose the file you previously saved.

It will highlight new entries.

It will also tell you about in-use file replacements that are queued up and anything placed in RunOnce keys - which can be used like active setup for setup programs.

Expert Comment

by:Sajen Jose
ID: 35511139
Active Setup is generally used in the packages which do not have a advertised shortcut.  During Windows Logon the following keys are compared.

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Active Setup\Installed Components\<GUID>
HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Active Setup\Installed Components\<GUID>

<GUID> has to unique;

If the HKCU key is not found the contents of the string value StubPath is executed. The HKLM key is then copied to HKCU.

The executable in StubPath can be anything (a VBS script, a regsvr32.exe call, etc),

Procedure to Create Active Setup Key:
Add a registry key to the package in the following format:
HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Active Setup\Installed Components\[Product Code]
The Value under the key should be a string value called Stubpath with data of msiexec /fu [Product Code]. For both instances of [ProductCode], the variable can be used rather than actual value of the product code property.
Note: There are several GUIDs that are contained within any particular MSI file. The GUID that is used in the registry will always be the ProductID GUID.
To effect a per-user repair of an application on the next logon of a user, we need to add the application’s ProductID GUID to this list of sub-keys and populate some string values
The values that are associated with this are described below:
(Default) – The (Default) value in this case contains the text of what will be displayed to the user in a dialog box when a repair is being run. In the event the (Default) value is blank or NULL, the text from the Stubpath is displayed
Stub Path:
Check out MSIEXEC command line switches below. The stub path doesn’t need to be an MSI but restricted users on Connect may have issues running executables.

Normally we use - msiexec /fu [ProductCode] /qn

Excerpt from MSDN:
/f [p|o|e|d|c|a|u|m|s|v] Package|ProductCode Repairs a product.
p - Reinstalls only if file is missing.
a - Forces all files to be reinstalled.
u - Rewrites all required user-specific registry entries.
s - Overwrites all existing shortcuts.
v - Runs from source and reaches the local package. Do not uses the v reinstall option for the first installation of an application or feature.

More Information -> http://www.appdeploy.com/articles/activesetup.asp 

Accepted Solution

Sajen Jose earned 2000 total points
ID: 35511149
Oops I guess I forgot to answer your question - if you need to perform any actions per user then you would need to use active setup using the above mentioned step. Usually some applications require configurations to be done in every user profile, this is usually achieved by using active setup. You can install your application and observe the behavior under different users and find out if it requires active setup.

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