Adobe CS4 Deployment (Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Standard)

I just finished a deployment request for Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Standard and now it’s the time to share my experiences. Adobe installers are well known for inconsistent behavior in a deployment scenario. This one was not different, but the size of the package made most of the problems in the customer network.

Adobe provides some info on how to perform a silent installation. In short this is what you need to do.

1. Copy the Adobe CS4 folder from Adobe CS4 DVD 1 and “DVD 2 to a network share. Choose Overwrite if asked.

2. Open command prompt and navigate to the Adobe CS4 folder in the network and run the command:

setup.exe record=1

3. The Adobe step opens in record mode now. Proceed the installation by entering the Serial Number, choose Accept License and in Installation Options make the required selections and click Install. The installation location must be in C:\ drive. It’s better to leave the default path (C:\Program files\Adobe) as such. Once it’s finished Click Exit.

4. Now browse to the folder C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Installers and copy the files Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Standard.install.xml and Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Standard.remove.xml. Paste these files in the Adobe CS4 folder in the network where the setup.exe is located. You may rename the files to some thing like install.xml and uninstall.xml.

5. Now create file in the Notepad and copy-paste the following contents in it. (Scroll down and see Update 3 for more information about a possible Exit code: 7 error).


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<Configuration>
<Payload>
<Data key="Registration">Suppress</Data>
<Data key="EULA">Suppress</Data>
<Data key="Updates">Suppress</Data>
</Payload>
</Configuration>

Save this file with the name application.xml.override in the folder [serverpath]\Adobe CS4\payloads\AdobeDesignSuiteStandard4-mul for Adobe CS4 design standard. The directory name for other suites can be obtained from the file [serverpath]\Adobe CS4\payloads\Setup.xml. Look for the line <Driver folder=”xxxxxx”/> e.g. <Driver folder=”AdobeDesignSuiteStandard4-mul”/>

6. The record process must have captured the serial number int he install.xml file. But in case it is not there in the install.xml file put the following line in the application.xml.override file.

<Data key=”Serial” protected=”0″>Edition serial number(No Hyphens)>

e.g. 12345678998745632123654

Make sure both the XML files and the application.xml.override file are saved in UTF-8 encoding format.

Deployment

You’re all set now. Use the following command lines for silent deployment for Adobe CS4.

Installation:

[serverpath]\Adobe CS4\setup.exe --mode=silent --deploymentFile=./install.xml

Removal:

[serverpath]\Adobe CS4\setup.exe --mode=silent --deploymentFile=./uninstall.xml

1. I used the parameter deploymentFile without that ./ first. It was working in Windows XP, but when it comes to Windows Vista it fails. Adding the ./ before the xml files fixed the problem. In some networks it’s working if used like .\install.xml or just install.xml. If none of the above options are working I suggest to put the xml files in a shared drive and give the full UNC path in quotes in the commandline.

2. I’ve created a small msi to populate some registry settings and a few files to suppress certain nasties in the Adobe Suite.

;Suppress updates for Acrobat 9
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Adobe\Adobe Acrobat\9.0\FeatureLockdown]
“bUpdater”=dword:00000000

;Disable Adobe Product Improvement Program
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Adobe\APIP]
“enabled”=dword:00000000

;Disable Help > Digital Editions” (get e-book$ online) for Acrobat 9
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Adobe\Adobe Acrobat\9.0\FeatureLockDown]
“bShowEbookMenu”=dword:00000000

;”Disable all Acrobat.com access, including initiation and participation” for Acrobat 9
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Adobe\Adobe Acrobat\9.0\Downtown]
“bDontShowAtLaunch”=dword:00000001
“bGoOnline”=dword:00000000

And two blank files with no file extension in the following locations in order to supress Adobe Air EULA & Update prompts.

In Windowx XP:

C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Adobe\Air\eulaAccepted
C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Adobe\Air\UpdateDisabled

In Windows Vista:

C:\ProgramData\Adobe\Air\eulaAccepted
C:\ProgramData\Adobe\Air\UpdateDisabled

3. In case of errors the logs can be found int he folder C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Installers (even though they are messy).

Update 1:

In a locked down environment with lots of restrictions to the users, modify permissions must be given in the following file/registry locations for a stable operation of CS4.

Files:

C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe
C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Adobe
C:\ProgramData\Adobe ( For Vista)

Registry:

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Adobe\Acrobat Distiller\9.0\PrinterJobControl

Update 2:

The license key will be captured in the install.xml in the following format with no hyphens.

<Property name=”pers_EPIC_SERIAL”>xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx</Property>

<Property name=“serialNumber”>xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx</Property> 

Update 3

The incorrect character encoding in the application.xml.override can fail the silent installation. If the the contents of the file is copied from a website it can happen. Make sure the the typographers quote marks (”) are changed to keyboard quote marks("), E.g.

<Driver folder=”driver payload folder”/>

should change to:

<Driver folder="driver payload folder"/>

You may download a working version of the application.xml.override file from my server here.

Incorrect text formatting can lead to the following error:

Checking bootstrapper progress
Ran uninstall for the bootstrapper due to an exception
[ 5300] Fri Mar 27 12:47:28 2009 FATAL
Exception: Payload deployment data is invalid or missing
Exit code: 7

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  • 46 Comments so far »

    1. mojowrkn said

      am February 25 2009 @ 12:47 am

      Thanks bean beating are heads against the wall with this deployment. Will test today.-John

    2. mojowrkn said

      am February 28 2009 @ 3:25 am

      Well ive used this with mixed success, most machines come up with nasty license errors. We are working with adobe on these issues but so far their advice is to “Uninstall ALL adobe products and then re-install”!!!

      Since I need CS4 on many machines we wont be doing that.

    3. Hemanth said

      am March 3 2009 @ 12:01 pm

      It works without much hassles for me. Do you have any other Adobe Creative Suite products installed?

    4. Ray said

      am March 25 2009 @ 1:49 am

      Can this be used with a regular boxed copy of CS4 (not purchased via licensing).
      I can run the –record=1 and get the xml files, but can’t seem to get the setup.exe to read them using the –deploymentfile=”\install.xml” option?

    5. Hemanth said

      am March 25 2009 @ 9:21 am

      Hi Ray,

      I’ve used a Retail copy of CS4 Design standard for deployment using this option. As far as I know this is the official Adobe way of deploying Creative Suite. So it should work in all the versions.

      The command line is like this:

      [serverpath]\Adobe CS4\setup.exe mode=silent deploymentFile=./install.xml

      But it just behaves differently in different networks. You may try .\install.xml or just install.xml. If none of the above options are working I suggest to put the xml files in a shared drive and give the full UNC path in quotes in the commandline.

      //Note : Post updated with additional options

    6. Ray said

      am March 25 2009 @ 7:40 pm

      Thanks,
      I was trying it without the –mode=silent but it failed. I don’t really want it silent, just automated.
      Do you know if there are other options available (other then silent)?
      Thanks!

    7. Copyfreak said

      am March 27 2009 @ 5:10 pm

      Hello there

      First, thanks for your amazing work 😉

      But it doesn’t want to work for me :-( Where has the application.xml.override exactly to be when I only want to install Photoshop CS4 silent? I always get in the logs:

      Checking bootstrapper progress
      Ran uninstall for the bootstrapper due to an exception
      [ 5300] Fri Mar 27 12:47:28 2009 FATAL
      Exception: Payload deployment data is invalid or missing
      Exit code: 7

      Do you have any idea? Thanks in advance!

    8. Hemanth said

      am March 27 2009 @ 5:40 pm

      @Ray: These xml files will work only with the-silent switch. To get an automated install you will need the help of a custom bootstrapper exe with window management capabilities.

      AutoIt scripts can do the job very easily. Just give it a try.

      http://www.autoitscript.com/AutoIt/

    9. Hemanth said

      am March 27 2009 @ 6:09 pm

      @Copyfreak:

      I’ve updated the post with some more details. See the Update 3 section to the bottom of the post. Give it a try and see if it’s working.

      Thanks for the tip.

    10. KittelTh said

      am April 8 2009 @ 4:28 pm

      Hi,

      important seems to be
      1. one file: Property name=serialNumber\n other file: Data key=Serial i.e. NoNumber!
      2. you can not use an UPGRADE KEY for SILENT INSTALLATION ADOBE CS4
      FATAL Exception: Property serialNumber contains value for an Upgrade/Update/Upsell serial number which should not be used for silent installation.
      Exit code: 7

      So I will Try AutoIt.

    11. Marshall said

      am May 14 2009 @ 12:09 am

      Im getting an error 7 and i cant figure out why…

      Property(S): pers_EPIC_SERIAL = XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
      === Logging stopped: 5/13/2009 14:23:40 ===
      [ 1820] Wed May 13 14:23:40 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      Ran uninstall for the bootstrapper due to an exception
      [ 1820] Wed May 13 14:23:40 2009 FATAL
      Exception: Payload deployment data is invalid or missing
      Exit code: 7
      [ 1820] Wed May 13 14:23:40 2009 INFO
      —————————————————————–
      —————— END Silent Installer Session —————–
      —————————————————————–

      [ 1820] Wed May 13 14:23:41 2009 INFO
      *=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*
      END – Installer Session
      *=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*

    12. emmanuel said

      am May 18 2009 @ 4:17 am

      do not forget the caps in de command line: seems to be case sensitive.
      For instance:
      \uncpathAdobe CS4Setup.exe\ –mode=Silent –deploymentFile=\\uncpathAdobe CS4install.xml\ –skipProcessCheck=1

      without the caps on the –Silent (S),–deploymentFile (F) and skipProcessCheck (P and C) parameters, you ‘ll get error 7!

      regards

    13. emmanuel said

      am May 18 2009 @ 4:21 am

      the above example is not: incorrect synthaxis…sorry

      what matters is the case sensitivity of the parameters!

    14. Tony G said

      am June 22 2009 @ 11:31 am

      You can control Adobe Air with these registry settings rather than having to copy those files to the user profile…

      [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Adobe\AIR]
      “AppInstallDisabled”=dword:00000001
      “UntrustedAppInstallDisabled”=dword:00000001
      “UpdateDisabled”=dword:00000001

    15. Sami Johnson said

      am July 21 2009 @ 2:15 am

      I’m trying this…it looks like it’s installing but it never does, no error or anything.

      I run in CMD bar, press run, and it shows in my task manager as running the install for awhile. Then that disappears and I have nothing.

      Any ideas?

    16. Hemanth said

      am July 21 2009 @ 10:45 am

      @Sami:

      Check the log file in the following folder.

      C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Installers

      Scroll down to the bottom and see of there is anything interesting like Exit code or Exception.

    17. Sami Johnson said

      am July 22 2009 @ 6:39 pm

      @ Hemanth

      I have found no exit code or exception

    18. Sami Johnson said

      am July 23 2009 @ 9:53 pm

      I got it! Perfect. I had to close out MSN Messenger! Thanks!

    19. RolfB said

      am September 3 2009 @ 5:32 pm

      I just implemented a CS4 Design Premium Version with ZEN Software Deployment. Its a smooth Implementation, the only what would be helpfull, if you could display something while setup is running …

    20. Hemanth said

      am September 3 2009 @ 5:35 pm

      @RolfB:

      Never virtualized Adobe CS products. How is it; performance wise?

    21. Andy King said

      am September 4 2009 @ 8:19 pm

      Has anyone been successful in removing files from the deployment. CS4 Design Premium comes in at 6GB, I’ve removed Acrobat from the deployment XML so that it does not install, but it seems if I remove the files the install fails. We’re deploying Design Premium, Web Premium and Master Suite so deploying acrobat 9 separately will save us a lot of bandwidth.

    22. Ben said

      am September 12 2009 @ 7:37 am

      Is it possible to do silent install but select demo/trial when doing the setup.exe –record=1 ?

      I have tried this but keep getting error code 7. No errors in the logfile.

    23. Hemanth said

      am September 13 2009 @ 12:51 pm

      Nope, the silent deployment needs a valid serial number.

    24. HughB said

      am September 18 2009 @ 5:36 am

      I am in the process of deploying CS4 in a school environment on a volume licence using Altiris and have an inconsistent problem.
      I set aside 5 computers to use as a test roll out, some newly imaged and some with other Adobe products such as Acrobat Reader, Flash Player etc.
      I have successfully deployed on 1 computer so far without a problem, but on others, the deploy stops when it gets to Adobe Air giving mixed messages, with a logon box requiring username and password access to the server on the target machine. Once its got access it proceeds to install the rest of the products?
      It doesnt seem to matter whats on the machine once its past the logon approval!

      Sample of install log at end of log file where it stalls.

      [ 1936] Fri Sep 18 09:54:32 2009 INFO
      *=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*
      Installer Operation: InstallThirdPartyPayloadOperation
      *=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*=*
      Installing third party payload
      Third party application path:\\mfs-inet\express\Images\apps\Adobe CS4\payloads\AdobeAMP-mul\AIRApplicationRunner.exe
      CommandLine: -airAppPath adobe_media_player.air -airRuntime “Adobe AIR Installer.exe” -desktopShortcut -eulaAccepted -programMenu -silent
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:34 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:36 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:38 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:40 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:42 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:44 2009 INFO
      Checking bootstrapper progress
      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:46 2009 INFO

      This problem is counterproductive to a silent install as you need to logon to the receiving machine to rectify the stalled deploy for each machine.

      Would appreciate any help.

      Thanks
      HughB

    25. HughB said

      am September 30 2009 @ 5:04 am

      “HughB said
      am September 18 2009 @ 5:36 am

      I am in the process of deploying CS4 in a school environment on a volume licence using Altiris and have an inconsistent problem.
      I set aside 5 computers to use as a test roll out, some newly imaged and some with other Adobe products such as Acrobat Reader, Flash Player etc.”

      Has anyone come across a problem like this before?

      Any help would be appreciated.

      Thanks

      HughB

    26. TomB said

      am October 3 2009 @ 3:24 am

      Hi, have been trying the xml route but getting error code 7. it seems to not see the install.xml file no matter what I do. Also, the install.xml file has two questionable entries. have tried changing the first one to my actual install source and tried removing the adobe flash property. Not sure why that is listed since I ran the record option for the full design premium suite. (have run it several times)

      Did anyone else encounter this?

      C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Installers\55230b0b70661df0f212e88f0b655f7

      C:\Apps\Adobe_CS4\extensions\AdobeFlash10-en_USLanguagePack\AdobeFlash10-en_USLanguagePack.msi

    27. TomB said

      am October 3 2009 @ 6:22 am

      How about this for a real gas? The adobe setup.exe identified my Intel P8600 as a 64 bit processor and added the line below to the install.xml file. I commented it out and now I finally see that one of the products has installed. with 51 diff components, this will run for quite a while.

      Changing it from 0 (zero) to 1 finally put a comment in the log file that I did not have a 64 bit system.

      0

    28. TomB said

      am October 3 2009 @ 6:23 am

      I tried to show the entire line in the file but only succeeded in making it not show.

      0

    29. TomB said

      am October 3 2009 @ 6:24 am

      okay one more time

      Property name=”OS64Bit”>0 Property

    30. Bondy666 said

      am October 13 2009 @ 2:56 pm

      McHughB – any news on that problem you had, ie:

      [ 396] Fri Sep 18 09:54:36 2009 INFO
      etc

      Getting the same problem with Design Premium (don’t get it in Standard).

      Thanks

    31. Louise said

      am October 17 2009 @ 2:00 am

      I had a problem where I followed the instructions for CS4 Web Premium enterprise deployment silent install. I combined the two DVDs into one and ran setup.exe with the –record=1 switch. Attended install would go smoothly, but when I tried to run silently, I kept running into Error Code 7. In the day and a half I spent trying to figure this out, this is what I have learned:

      1. Pay attention to your case. Like @Emmanuel said above, “without the caps on the –Silent (S),–deploymentFile (F) and skipProcessCheck (P and C) parameters, you ‘ll get error 7!”

      2. Make sure the xml files you use (install.xml, uninstall.xml, the override file…) are encoded in UTF-8!! This was the final key for me. It doesn’t seem like they were created that way. I used Notepad++ and converted them to UTF-8 and saved them. This seemed to do the trick.

      3. It seems to be picky about what you name your files. Instead of renaming the install.xml to something else for different deployments, try putting them in different folders.

      I am installing on Windows XP Professional.

    32. itdkp said

      am October 19 2009 @ 6:55 pm

      Hi
      I also work in a school setting and I am trying to deploy Adobe CS4 silent. I am following the Adobe Creative Suite enterprise manual deployment guide. I started at the Create a single installer. I copied over the application disk (the other disk is the content and another is resources)to a folder on the network drive. I then ran the (on windows) setup.exe record=1 in the run line. The application does launch the installer, I can enter the serial number and select the products to install. I click on the install button so the application can create the install.xml and remove.xml HOWEVER when I go to find this file in C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Installers the 2 files are not there???
      Can anyone help???

      I have a deadline to meet and at this rate it is not looking good for me….help …help please

    33. itdkp said

      am October 19 2009 @ 7:00 pm

      I must add that I am using Windows XP Pro, and Adobe Creative Suite v4 Webstandard. I also have the ESET NOD 32 version 4 installed on the test system.

    34. louise said

      am October 20 2009 @ 9:46 pm

      itdkp –

      Couple of questions.

      Above, you say you ran setup.exe record=1. The switch is actually –record=1. Notice the two hyphens. Don’t know if you ran it that way or just typed it in here wrong.

      After you selected the programs to install, did it actually install or did it direct you to the saved files? It shouldn’t actually install anything, just save the files in the Installer folder.

      What is in the C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Installers folder? The installer saves logs there.

    35. louise said

      am October 20 2009 @ 9:48 pm

      Looks like this web page messes with the hyphens. The switch has TWO hyphens.

    36. Hemanth said

      am October 21 2009 @ 10:28 am

      Yeah, the bloggig system have problems parsing TWO hyphens. I spent a lot of time to get it right in the post itself.

    37. itdkp said

      am October 22 2009 @ 12:58 am

      After all this I was able to use the two hyphens and have the files save, not install. My problem was that I was not using the 2 hyphens. Thank you very much for the help however I am now wondering if there is a way to show a progress bar so my clients know that the application is installing. I know I can use the mode=silent however I want them to see that it is installing with no user interaction.

    38. itdkp said

      am October 23 2009 @ 7:35 pm

      I am using Zenworks 7 to create an object to deploy Adobe Creative Suite 4 web standard. I have tried numerous ways to set up the install.
      I used the Path to file:
      L:\CD_CS4AdobeCS4\Setup.exe
      Parameters:
      -mode=Silent -deploymentFile=install.xml -skipProcessCheck

      This works but then does the system check, gives a warning about the Win XP service pack 3 then asks for the serial number The serial number was captured in the install.xml file

      does anyone have any ideas??

      HELP!

    39. kjdfhkjhfdskjd said

      am January 29 2010 @ 4:51 am

      As above –

      [serverpath]\Adobe CS4\setup.exe –mode=silent –deploymentFile==./install.xml

      I found that declaring the explicit UNC path fixed my Exit Code: 7 issue
      As well, wrap your paths in “” to be sure.

      “[serverpath]\Adobe CS4\setup.exe” –mode=silent –deploymentFile==”[serverpath]\Adobe CS4\Install.xml”

    40. Jonathon said

      am March 3 2010 @ 10:13 am

      Worked perfectly First time as an MDT-2010 Package.
      Great Guide.

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