When you purchase a volume license for Adobe Creative Suite 4 product, Adobe provides an option that allows you to run a silent installation (that is, an installation with preselected options and no interface) on Windows or Mac OS X. In a silent installation, a custom installer runs the installers for each product in the suite by using command-line installation tools. Silent installations are also used as basis for enterprise deployment of Creative Suite 4 products.

This document will cover the process and necessary files to run the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product silently. For additional information on this process please refer to the "Adobe Creative Suite 4 Enterprise Manual Deployment Guide".

Products affected

The steps included in this document apply to the following products:

  • Affect Effects
  • Audition
  • Contribute
  • Creative Suite Design Premium
  • Creative Suite Design Standard
  • Dreamweaver
  • Encore DVD
  • Fireworks
  • Flash
  • Illustrator
  • InCopy
  • Creative Suite Master Collection
  • OnLocation
  • Photopshop
  • Photoshop Extended
  • Premiere
  • Premiere Pro
  • Creative Suite Production Premium
  • Soundboth
  • Creative Suite Web Preimum
  • Creative Suite Web Standard

Overview of silent installation

Configuring a silent installation consists of configuring the appropriate XML installer files. Then installation can be begun using a command line.

During the configuration process you will create 3 XML files:

  • install.xml
  • uninstall.xml
  • application.xml.override

We have developed a tool to simplify the process of creating the files necessary to silently install the Adobe Creative Suite 4 products. The Creative Suite Deployment Tool (CSDT) will create a custom package that will reduce the step necessary to create a package.

You must have a single source of the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product installer. If you received the product on multiple DVDs or files you must create an installation point. For additional information on creating a installation point please follow, "Install Adobe Creative Suite 4 and Point Products from the desktop (Windows XP and Vista)" (TechNote kb403963) or "Install Adobe Creative Suite 4 and Point Products from the desktop (Mac OS X)" (TechNote kb403964). You can store the installation source locally on the machine or in a shared network location.

Configuring XML installer files

By default, a silent installation installs all components of Creative Suite 4 product in the default location. The interface settings will be the defaults. So, when the first Creative Suite application is launched, the user will be prompted to supply a serial number, accept the End-User License Agreement (EULA) and enter registration information. Also, the Adobe Update Manager will automatically check for available updates.

Creative Suite 4 uses XML files to configure these behaviors: application.xml.override, install.xml and uninstall.xml. For complete details on how to configure these files, see the white paper listed below in "Complete deployment information."

  • application.xml.override

    This file configures the interface elements that appear during the first launch of a Creative Suite 4 application. You will need to create this file and place it in the main 'driver' payload folder.

  • install.xml and uninstall.xml

    These files control which components of Creative Suite are installed and uninstalled, respectively. You can modify these file to remove individual component 'payloads'. The same modifications need to be made to both files. These XML files do not require a specific name to be used during deployment.

Launching the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product with the option --record=1 will assist you in creating the install and uninstall XML files. The application.xml.override file must be created manually unless the CSDT is used to create your package.

Begin silent install/uninstall for Windows

A silent installation on Windows started by running setup.exe through a command line. This should be done as administrator. Use the following command line from the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product setup.exe directory.

setup --mode=silent --deploymentFile="path to installer file"

Replace path to installer file with the full path to the custom install.xml or uninstall.xml that you created.

The CSDT will create an installer for initiating the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product installation. Run the executable file on the command line to perform the installation.


Silent install/uninstall for Mac OS

A silent installation on Macintosh started by running the setup executable as super user through a command line. Use the following command line from the directory where setup is.

sudo Setup.app/Contents/MacOS/Setup --mode=silent --deploymentFile="path to installer file"

Replace path to installer file with the full path to the custom install.xml or uninstall.xml file that you created.

The CSDT will create an installer for initiating the Adobe Creative Suite 4 product installation. Run the application file on the command line to perform the installation.

sudo UberInstaller.app/Contents/MacOS/Setup

 How to include product updates

Existing product updates can be included as part of the initial product deployment. To include product updates, use the following steps:

  1. Download the applicable updates from Adobe.com.
  2. Expand (.zip) or mount (.dmg) the product update downloads.
  3. Locate the update's Payloads folder (if it exists) and move it's contents into the Payloads folder of the single installer source you built per the instructions above.
  4. Locate the update's Extensions folder and move it's contents into the Extensions folder of the single installer source you built per the instructions above.
  5. Deploy per the instructions above.

Note: If the update you have downloaded does not have an Extensions folder, it cannot be installed as part of this deployment method.

 Complete deployment information

Complete information on configuring a silent installation for network deployment can be found in the "Adobe Creative Suite 4 Enterprise Manual Deployment Guide" white paper.

This paper covers silent installation of Adobe Creative Suite 4, as well as individually-purchased Creative Suite 4 applications, by command line or using deployment tools such as Apple Remote Desktop (ARD) and Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS). Also included are detailed instructions on modifying the XML installer files listed above. "Support boundaries for deployment with Adobe Creative Suite 4 or Point Products" (TechNote kb405450) contains information on the supported deployment environments and information on support limitations.

 Troubleshooting silent installations

Use one or more of the following steps to troubleshoot silent installations:

1. Inspect the application.xml.override file

Many Creative Suite 4 deployments fail because of typos, formatting issues or other issues with the application.xml.override file. Follow the example below:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?> <Configuration> <Payload> <Data key="Serial" protected="0">000000000000000000000000</Data> <Data key="Registration">Suppress</Data> <Data key="EULA">Suppress</Data> <Data key="Updates">Suppress</Data> </Payload> </Configuration>

Common mistakes include:

  1. Misspelled words
  2. Case sensitive words being all lower case, or all upper case (all strings, and tags in XML are case sensitive)
  3. Not using the Format > Make Plain Text option in TextEdit (Mac only - by default TextEdit saves as RTF format)
  4. Make sure that the file is called application.xml.override and has no extensions (use get info, or file properties to verify)
  5. application.xml.override file not located in the proper location (check the Setup.xml file in the Payloads folder to find the location of the driver folder)
  6. Incorrect shell commands

2. Find specific error messages in the log files.

Most errors that occur during a silent installation will appear in the installation logs. For details on how to find and read these files, see, "Find and read installation logs for Adobe Creative Suite 3 and 4" (TechNote kb400593). These error messages might indicate what you need to do to solve the issue, or you can search on these errors in the Adobe knowledgebase.

3. Attempt a standard installation.

If a standard (non-silent) installation does not produce an issue, then there may be an issue with one of the custom installer files. Make sure the installer files have no typos and that the information in the tags (such as serial number) are correct.

If the error does occur in a standard installation, the error messages given may have additional information, or you can search for those error messages in Adobe's knowledge base.

4. Close conflicting processes/applications.

Various applications and processes can conflict with the installation of Creative Suite 4. While a standard installation will display a list of conflicting processes during the installation process, a silent install will fail and put an error message in the installation log.

Additional Information

Please refer to the Adobe Creative Suite 4 Enterprise Manual Deployment Guide white paper for additional information.

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