With the automatic software deployment you may distribute the following items:
- Standard-Software packages
- Microsoft Security-Patches
- Administrative Scripts
- Security Policies
The software deployment starts:
- with every client boot and/or pushed server-sided
- central, server-driven
- without user interaction
Automatic software deployment has to be controlled centrally and execute without user interaction.
These requirements are realized through two software-components that will be installed on a client-pc with the software-package opsi-client-agent:
- The opsi-client-agent checks if there is anything to execute on a selected client-pc like e.g. install or deinstall software-packages, or update them. Configuration information about the client-pc is stored at the opsi server. This is usally done with every boot and before the user logs in.
- If an action request exists, the script-driven installation-program opsi-winst starts. The required scripts and software-packages are stored on a fileshare. During the whole installation there is no need and no possibility for the user to manipulate the installation process.
The opsi-winst program supports different ways of automated software installation:
- "Silent" or "unattended" Setup: Existing setup programs from the original software manufacturer can be executed within an opsi-winst script in 'silent' or 'unattended' mode.
- Microsoft-Installer-based Setup: MSI-packages will be invoked (possibly after being customized) by installer-service.
- Installation with the original setup program and recorded answers (using the free tools AutoIT or AutoHotkey)
- Completely script based setup: The opsi-winst program manages all installation tasks directly via script. Usually that is something like file installation to the local file system and patching the registry.
Usually a combination of all different ways in one script does the job best, to customize a package according to a customers requirements.
The opsi-winst scripting language provides some as simple as possible commands for the most common installation processes. These commands can be completed through integrated calling of your own programs or scripts.
The opsi-winst features are among others:
- Copy (version controlled) and delete
- Registry manipulation, edit INI-files and XML-files.
Customize the startmenu and the desktop
- Start external windows-programs and external scripts
- Use external scripts as internal functions (user defined functions)
- Special commands for handling of 32/64 bit systems
- Logging all installation processes
Some examples can be found opsi-winst script collection in the opsi wiki at opsi.org
A full description of the opsi-winst features can be found at the opsi-winst manual.
A full description how to integrate new software packages into the opsi software deployment is opsi getting started manual.