MSI - need to update contents of large MSI best approach


I have a large MSI (2.1 gigs) which i repackaged, unfortunately there is some updates that I need to do the MSI. I originally used set-up capture to compile the project and made all my changes ect in Installshield.

I need to copy around 300 files around 600 megs into different folders in the MSI, however due to how long it takes to compile the file MSI (over 6 hours) and the amount of customisation that I have done for it, its not as simple as just replacing the files directly in the MSI.

I'm wondering if anyone has a suggestion as to how I may approach this without having to repackage everything I have done thus far.

Trying to do a transform of the existing msi crashes InstallShield I thought possibly trying to open the MSI as an MSN? But I'm wondering if this would keep all my current settings, customisations ect ect.?

Can anyone help?

1 Comment   [ + ] Show comment
  • Why not just build a new MSI with the additional/replacement files and make installation of the first MSI a prerequisite? - anonymous_9363 7 years ago

Answers (5)

Posted by: EdT 7 years ago
Red Belt
Do bear in mind that most tools offer compile options such as external uncompressed files, etc.
So for update and testing, use the external uncompressed compile option as this compiles a lot faster. Once you have tested and found the MSI works correctly, you can then kick off a full compile.

One other option would be to create a patch to the original MSI. Untimately however, the speed of installation and the size of the deployment will never be quite as efficient as a full recompile with older versions of files removed.
Posted by: EdT 7 years ago
Red Belt
Bite the bullet, edit the original MSI and recompile overnight.  Otherwise you may well find yourself wasting many more hours trying to get a shortcut solution working.
Posted by: jagadeish 7 years ago
Red Belt
Update your original MSI
Posted by: dj_xest 7 years ago
5th Degree Black Belt
The simplest approach would be to use what VBscab was suggesting about creating another MSI and make the previous one a prerequisite. If you want to get rid of the previous one and you only have newer files, it would be worth spending time on using the old project file and just drop the newer files, bump up the version, change the productcode, configre the upgrade table and then recompile. You can also do patch if you want.
Posted by: Prabs 7 years ago
Senior White Belt

Open the MSI InstallShield and save the opened MSI as MST (Don’tdo any changes). Open the saved MST and add the files and save the MST whichnormally create compress cab file. 

Recompiling the Original MSI may cause more issues than creating an MST and it is very easier to create MST from my experience.

  • MST would be better for him if Installshield is not crashing as he said.. I don't see any issue recompiling the original MSI and update it. If it came from the vendor, yes. - dj_xest 7 years ago
This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site and/or clicking the "Accept" button you are providing consent Quest Software and its affiliates do NOT sell the Personal Data you provide to us either when you register on our websites or when you do business with us. For more information about our Privacy Policy and our data protection efforts, please visit GDPR-HQ