Automate Software Deployment from a Central Location
Desktop Central has certainly simplified software deployment tasks for over 10,000 systems, and it is either a 9 or 10 [out of 10] on features
Jason Beckett, Prime Health Care Services
Distributing, installing, updating and uninstalling software applications are common tasks in all enterprises. These tasks include a lot of processes and usually take up a lot of administrators’ time and resources. Each of these tasks has to be completed in individual computers.
The Software Deployment feature in Desktop Central enables administrators to distribute, install, update and uninstall software applications remotely as well as automatically.
The Software Deployment feature in Desktop Central enables you to complete the following tasks:
- Create a repository of packages. This enables administrators to re-use packages any number of times to install or uninstall the software applications
- Deploy both MSI and EXE-based software applications
- Use the set of predefined templates to deploy software applications
- Perform pre-deployment activities for software installation/ uninstallation
- Install software applications as a specific user using the Run As option
- Copy the installables to computers before installing software applications
- Schedule deployment of software applications
- Uninstall MSI and EXE-based software applications
Desktop Central’s Windows Installer feature improves the administrator’s productivity by supporting remote MSI EXE software/application deployment. Desktop Central can automatically install MSI EXE software to users or computers at a scheduled time. Desktop Central supports software installation to users and computers or mass installation to OUs, Domains and Sites.
Creating Software Repositories
Software repositories are used to store software packages. These packages can either be for MSI-based software applications or EXE-based software applications. A software package added in Desktop Central will have the location of the installation files along with the installation and uninstallation commands. A package once added can be used to deploy the software any number of times by just defining a configuration.
For ensuring a smooth and successful software deployment, Desktop Central provides the option to validate a set of conditions before a software installation/ uninstallation. The pre-deployment activities include checking for previous software versions, running processes of dependant executables, free disk space etc. Upon validation of each of these conditions, you can decide on proceeding with or skipping the installation/ uninstallation.
Scheduled Software Deployment
Desktop Central allows administrators to schedule a software deployment to users and computers after a specified time. This is very useful in deploying the software after business hours to ensure users/computers are not affected due to this deployment. The network traffic will also be minimum at off hours.
Visibility on Software Installation Status
Desktop Central does not stop with just installing MSI/EXE software in the user machines; it also provides the status of the installation for the administrator to check whether the installation was successful in all the configured systems. The software installation status is made available in the Desktop Central client, which can be accessed from anywhere in the network through a web browser.
Uninstalling MSI and EXE-based Software
In addition to installation of Windows software, Desktop Central also provides an ability to uninstall the MSI software applications that have been installed using Desktop Central. The details of the installed software are maintained under the configurations. The administrator can just open the configuration, edit it and choose to remove the software that was previously installed.
For more details, refer to the Windows Installer topic in the online help.
Deploying Software Applications Using Templates
The Templates tab in the Software Deployment section comprises of predefined applications that you can use to create packages automatically. This functionality downloads binaries from the respective vendors’ websites to create packages automatically. You can create a single package or multiple packages from the Templates tab and deploy them to target computers.