How to package software with PSADT Package Wizard

Software packaging with PSADT Package Wizard
You can automate your software packaging processes with our free PSADT Package Wizard. See how it works using Adobe Acrobat Reader DC as an example.
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Christoph

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Want to create PSADT packages really fast? XOAP’s no-code PSADT Package Wizard (free to use, with or without XOAP) simplifies the process, offering standardization, versioning and documentation.

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how the XOAP Package Wizard works, using Adobe Acrobat Reader DC as an example. We’ll also compare the process of package creation and deployment with XOAP and SCCM step by step. ⚡

Getting started

Download the latest Adobe Reader version from Adobe’s website.

Unzip the downloaded file using an extractor.

Unzip the downloaded file using an extractor

Open the file “abcpy.ini” in the unzipped directory. Enter the value “EULA_ACCEPT=YES” under “OEM Installation Options” and save the file.

“abcpy.ini” file

All preparations are now complete. Moving on to packaging with the XOAP Package Wizard.

 

Packaging software using the Package Wizard

In the XOAP Package Wizard, first add the required files from the extracted folder.

Add the required files

On the second page, accept the ‘Application variables’ that are automatically read from the MSI.

Accept the ‘Application variables’

Click on ‘Next step’ to switch to the Installation tab.

In the ‘Toolkit Function Builder’ > ‘Choose a function’, search for MSI and select ‘Execute MSI’. Under ‘Choose the parameters’ select Action, Path and Patch.

Select Action, Path and Patch

Once everything has been entered, add the function to the script.

Click on ‘Next step’ to switch to the configuration of the ‘Uninstallation’ phase.

Select ‘MSI’, ‘Path’ and ‘Action’ again and click ‘Add’ to add the script.

Click Add to add the script

Save the project and you’re done. ✅

 

Deploying PSADT packages with XOAP vs. SCCM

If we go a step further and head to the XOAP platform, the Application Management module, application.XO, offers a wide range of possibilities and powerful features when it comes to software packaging and deployment.

Here’s how it compares to SCCM.

🟢 Key differences

SCCM is specifically tailored for enterprise environments with complex infrastructures and delivers a wide range of functions and possibilities. It requires:

  • a maintained SCCM infrastructure
  • specialized knowledge to run and operate the entire environment, including different infrastructure roles and databases.

XOAP, on the other hand, offers flexibility and supports growing infrastructures, especially when it comes to small, medium and enterprise customers who want an easier application deployment process.

🟢 XOAP deployment

First, we’ll try deploying software with XOAP.

Once your package is ready, you can easily upload it to your XOAP workspace. To prepare the upload process, use our script to zip the application folder created by the wizard.

Log in to your workspace and go to Application Management > Applications. To upload your package, click the green plus button.

Steps to uploading packages in application.XO

Upload your package in the ‘Add Application’ window. In the same window, you can define tags and select overwrite settings if needed.

When you are ready, just click ‘Save’ and wait for the upload to finish.

Add application

Once uploaded, click ‘Close’ to exit the ‘Add Application’ window. Go to Application Management > Groups.

To add an application to an application group, click the plus button to create a new group or edit an existing one by selecting ‘Edit’ from the action menu.

Create a new group or edit an existing one

In the ‘Edit Group’ window, under ‘Available Applications,’ find the uploaded application and click the plus button to add the application to the group.

Add the application to the group

Clicking the plus button will open the ‘Create Configuration’ window. Here, you can configure the installation settings of your package.

When ready, click ‘Save’ in the ‘Create Configuration’ window.

Click ‘Save’ again in the ‘Edit Group’ window to finish editing the group.

Finish editing the group

If you edited an existing group, you are ready. If your application Role is assigned to a configuration management group, your application will be installed on your nodes during the next policy interval.

In case you created a new group, you should add the new group to the application Role. More information on how to do that can be found on our documentation page and YouTube channel.

🟢 SCCM integration and deployment

Next, we’ll see how it’s done with SCCM.

Run the SCCM console and start a new application under Software Library.

Start a new application under Software Library

In the wizard that opens, select ‘Manually specify the application information’.

Select the option called Manually specify the application information

Enter the application information.

Enter the application information
Continue entering the application information

On the next page, under ‘Deployment Types’, click ‘Add’ to open another wizard.

Click Add to open another wizard

Select ‘Script Installer’ under Type and click ‘Next’.

Select Script Installer under Type

Enter the name.

Enter the name

Enter the path to the package under ‘Content location’.

Under ‘Specify the command used to install this content’, enter “Deploy-Application.ps1” -DeploymentType Install.

Under ‘Configuration Manager can remove installations of this content if an uninstall program is specified below’ enter “Deploy-Application.ps1” -DeploymentType Uninstall.

Enter “Deploy-Application.ps1” DeploymentType Uninstall

Under ‘Detection Method’, simply enter the path to the installed start file on the target client.

Enter the path to the installed start file

From here, the wizard can be abbreviated to ‘Summary’ and closed.

Details of the task completed
See available deployment types

Click ‘Summary’ and close the wizard.

View the summary of the completed task

The new application now only needs to be deployed.

Ready to deploy

Flexible software packaging

The type of solution that will fit your organization best depends on whether you’re managing a complex infrastructure or need more flexibility.

XOAP’s Application Management module, application.XO, simplifies the application deployment processes significantly, especially when paired with Image, Configuration and Platform management modules. 

While the Package Wizard we explored in this blog post is free to use with or without XOAP, we suggest you check out the entire XOAP platform. With the full automation bundle included and a 30-day free trial, it will transform your expectations when it comes to software packaging. 

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