Course info
Aug 17, 2016
1h 21m

Users rely on software, so it's the IT pro's responsibility to ensure that software is installed and maintained reliably. Unfortunately, these tasks can quickly consume too much time if the old click, click, next approach is followed. This course, App Repackaging Using Orca, will introduce software customization concepts allowing any IT pro to automate, standardize, and validate software installation packages. First, you will learn the basics of the Windows Installer and its .MSI installation packages. Next, you'll see how to explore the customizable properties available within a package. Finally, you get to meet Microsoft's Orca tool and learn how it's used to edit .MSI files, producing a customized deployment package. When finished with this course, you'll have the skills necessary to turn a click, click, next software installation into a fully automated, silently installed solution.

About the author
About the author

During his 20+ years in the IT industry, John has enjoyed the opportunity to work as a consultant, architect, executive, speaker, and author.

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More courses by John O'Neill Sr.
Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Course Overview
Hello, guten tag, hola, bonjour. My name is John O'Neill Sr. , and welcome to my course, App Repackaging Using Orca. I'm the Chief Technologist at AWS Solutions and AwesomeWildStuff. com. As a 25 plus year IT pro, I've enjoyed the opportunity to work as a consultant, architect, executive, speaker, and even author. I'm a three-time Microsoft MVP who's passionate about sharing my love and knowledge of IT. App deployment is possibly the most common IT-pro task. Without automation, it's likely to also become the most tedious. In this course, we're going to discover just how easy it is to repackage software for streamline deployment. Some of the major topics that we'll cover include, discovering the Windows Installer, using the MSIEXEC command line, Microsoft's free Orca utility, and repacking an application for interaction-free installation. By the end of this course, you'll know exactly what it takes to transform a click, click, next installation into a completely silent, frustration-free experience. Before beginning the course, you should be familiar with Windows and basic software installation. From here, you can dive into other courses on advanced software deployment. I hope you'll join me on this journey to learn software repackaging with the App Repackaging Using Orca course at Pluralsight.

Getting Started
Hi there, I'm John O'Neill Sr. , and I'm very excited to join you today on a journey into application repackaging, specifically using Microsoft's Orca software. Deployment and automation are two terms that are near and dear to every IT pro's heart, but typically they're thought of only when we talk about operating systems. Well, think that way no more, because in this course we are going to dive deep into what it takes to automate for deployment any software package that you may have in your organization. So, in this course we're going to cover things such as the Windows Installer, the command-line interface to that installer, how we can automate use of that installer, and how we can even go back and do advanced operations such as updating, uninstalling, those sorts of things. This course will be short and sweet, but by the time you come out at the end, you will be able to tear it up and turn normal software deployment that requires a lot of hands-on work into something that can be automated and distributed, and worked with once, and deployed many times. So with that, let's get into it.

Getting an MSI When Only an EXE Is Available
Hi there, this is John O'Neill Sr. from Pluralsight, and I'm back with you on the skill development train, the journey that you've taken to learn about app repackaging with Microsoft Orca. In the previous module we discussed MSIs, and the Windows Installer, and everything about them. Well in this module, we're going to dive a little deeper and take a look at something that isn't well known, but that's real handy to have in your toolkit when it comes time to deploying apps, and that is how to get an MSI from an EXE file. So if all you have is setup. exe, we're going to discuss how to take that and turn it into an MSI Windows Installer file. Well with that, let's get to it.

Introducing and Installing Orca
Hi. This is John O'Neill Sr. from Pluralsight, and we are just rocking our way through this course. In this module we are going to begin taking a look at Orca, Microsoft's free tool for customizing MSI Windows Installer packages. We'll take a look at what it is, what it isn't, how to get it, and how to get it installed. So with that, let's get to it.

Using the Orca Interface
Hi again. This is John O'Neil Sr. from Pluralsight, and I'm excited to get into this next module of our Orca training. In this module we're going to take a look at using the Orca interface, everything from opening the program to moving around within it. Let's take a quick rundown on what we're going to cover in this module. First and foremost we're going to take a look at how you find the Orca program and get it to start. After you install Orca, it doesn't necessarily pop right up on the desktop, so we'll take care of that. Then we'll look at opening an existing MSI package. So we'll pull up the program, open up an MSI, and take a look around. Mainly we'll explore the properties of that MSI, and see what it is that we can tweak and change to customize that MSI for our purposes. Finally we will use Orca's built-in validators to take care of verifying our changes and make sure that what we've done produces the intended result.

Repackaging an MSI with Orca
Hello. John O'Neill Sr. here, and I'm very excited about this module, Repackaging an MSI with Orca, because in this module we're going to take all the concepts that we've discussed, and everything we've taken a look at, and put them together to go through a real-live use case for a custom deployment. Let's run down quickly what we're going to go through in the demo of this module. First we're going to open an existing MSI so that we can begin to tweak and customize it to our organization's need. Our organization needs to take the WinZip MSI, and change it, customize it, so that the options match our organization's desired outcome, and that we can eventually, silently install it. Now, we'll do a before install so you can see how it goes without any modification, and then we'll do an after install so that we can prove that, hey, what we did, actually produced the desired outcome. And finally, we will be performing silent install because that is typically one of the desired points of customizing MSIs is so that we can do away with the whole click, click, next shoe-leather approach to software deployment.

Closing the Story
Hello, John O'Neill Sr. , and it's time to close the story on our introduction to Microsoft Orca course. In this course we've done everything from discuss what an MSI package is, to actually customizing it to meet specific needs, and pretty much everything in between. Now please, remember a few key concepts, such as how we went and installed, downloaded and installed, the Microsoft Orca software, and then how we used it to start up and look at the properties of a. msi file. Then also, how we used the MSIEXEC command-line installer, the command-line interface for the Windows Installer, to silently install a package, whether we had modified it or not. Every organization deals with software installation woes, and the biggest woe among them is having to do the shoe-leather approach, click, click, next, to install software. Well, by downloading and using Microsoft Orca to customize your packages to deploy exactly as you need them to, you'll be able to distribute software in a very automated, very easy fashion. I hope you enjoyed this class. Again, I'm John O'Neill Sr. from Pluralsight, and I'll see you in the next course.