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How to create a combined network install point for all Visual Studio 2008 Express Editions

How to create a combined network install point for all Visual Studio 2008 Express Editions

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I previously posted an item describing how to create an installable layout for a Visual Studio 2008 Express Edition.  In this post, I will extend upon the topic of creating a network install point and demonstrate how to create a network install point that can be used to install all of the Express Editions from a single location.  This topic is more advanced than my previous post because it requires some modifications to setup data files, but it is all achievable with a few additional steps.

At a high level, what the steps below will do is walk you through the process of downloading the prerequisite packages (which are common to all Express Editions), and then downloading the individual installers for each Express Edition.  Then we will update a setup data file for each Express Edition to force setup to search for the prerequisite packages in a common location so they only have to be downloaded and stored on the network install point once.

Here are the specific steps to accomplish this:

  1. Create a folder named c:\Express_Editions_2008 and a sub-folder named c:\Express_Editions_2008\wcu
  2. Follow the steps in Option 1 or Option 2 of the topic entitled How to create an installable layout for a Visual Studio 2008 Express Edition to stage a network share for the Visual WebDev 2008 Express Edition, and stage it to c:\Express_Editions_2008\VWD instead of the folder c:\visual_webdev_2008 listed in that article
  3. Copy the contents of the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VWD\wcu up one directory to c:\Express_Editions_2008\wcu
  4. Open the file named c:\Express_Editions_2008\VWD\setup.sdb in a text editor such as notepad
  5. Locate the section named [CD Info] in setup.sdb, and for each component that contains the relative folder path wcu\<folder>, change this path to be ..\wcu\<folder>.  This allows setup to find the component setup package in the new location that you copied the WCU folder to in step 3 above
  6. Save and close setup.sdb

Now, for each of the other 3 Express Editions (Visual Basic 2008 Express Edition, Visual C++ 2008 Express Edition and Visual C# 2008 Express Edition), follow the set of steps listed below to add them to your network install point.

Visual Basic 2008 Express Edition

  1. Download the web download bootstrapper for the Visual Basic 2008 Express Edition and save it to your local hard drive
  2. Create a new folder named c:\Express_Editions_2008\VB
  3. Extract the contents of the web download bootstrapper to the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VB by running vbsetup.exe /x:c:\Express_Editions_2008\VB
  4. Go to c:\Express_Editions_2008\VB and open the file baseline.dat in a text editor such as Notepad
  5. Open a web browser and build a URL by typing http://go.microsoft.com/ and appending the data stored in the URL value in the [vs_setup.dll] section of baseline.dat.  The desired URL is http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=96093 for Visual Basic.
  6. Navigate to the URL that you created in step 5 and choose to save the file ixpvb.exe to the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VB
  7. Open the file named c:\Express_Editions_2008\VB\setup.sdb in a text editor such as notepad
  8. Locate the section named [CD Info] in setup.sdb, and for each component that contains the relative folder path wcu\<folder>, change this path to be ..\wcu\<folder>.  This allows setup to find the component setup package in the new location that you copied the WCU folder to in step 3 above
  9. Save and close setup.sdb

Visual C++ 2008 Express Edition

  1. Download the web download bootstrapper for the Visual C++ 2008 Express Edition and save it to your local hard drive
  2. Create a new folder named c:\Express_Editions_2008\VC
  3. Extract the contents of the web download bootstrapper to the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VC by running vcsetup.exe /x:c:\Express_Editions_2008\VC
  4. Go to c:\Express_Editions_2008\VC and open the file baseline.dat in a text editor such as Notepad
  5. Open a web browser and build a URL by typing http://go.microsoft.com/ and appending the data stored in the URL value in the [vs_setup.dll] section of baseline.dat.  The desired URL is http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=95929 for Visual C++
  6. Navigate to the URL that you created in step 5 and choose to save the file ixpvc.exe to the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VC
  7. Open the file named c:\Express_Editions_2008\VC\setup.sdb in a text editor such as notepad
  8. Locate the section named [CD Info] in setup.sdb, and for each component that contains the relative folder path wcu\<folder>, change this path to be ..\wcu\<folder>.  This allows setup to find the component setup package in the new location that you copied the WCU folder to in step 3 above
  9. Save and close setup.sdb

Visual C# 2008 Express Edition

  1. Download the web download bootstrapper for the Visual C# 2008 Express Edition and save it to your local hard drive
  2. Create a new folder named c:\Express_Editions_2008\VCSharp
  3. Extract the contents of the web download bootstrapper to the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VCSharp by running vcssetup.exe /x:c:\Express_Editions_2008\VCSharp
  4. Go to c:\Express_Editions_2008\VCSharp and open the file baseline.dat in a text editor such as Notepad
  5. Open a web browser and build a URL by typing http://go.microsoft.com/ and appending the data stored in the URL value in the [vs_setup.dll] section of baseline.dat.  The desired URL is http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=96094 for Visual C#
  6. Navigate to the URL that you created in step 5 and choose to save the file ixpvcs.exe to the folder c:\Express_Editions_2008\VCSharp
  7. Open the file named c:\Express_Editions\VCSharp\setup.sdb in a text editor such as notepad
  8. Locate the section named [CD Info] in setup.sdb, and for each component that contains the relative folder path wcu\<folder>, change this path to be ..\wcu\<folder>.  This allows setup to find the component setup package in the new location that you copied the WCU folder to in step 3 above
  9. Save and close setup.sdb
Once you have staged the desired Express Editions, you can run the individual setup.exe files in the c:\Express_Editions_2008\<edition_name> sub-folders to run each setup and install each Express Edition.
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