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This one hurt a little bit.  Several of our application installs have been rewritten to accommodate Windows Vista support.  We use wildcards to add some of the files because they ship sample files and shared resources that change often.  One of these shared resources was giving me a problem.

We are installing a DLL into our Common Files folder that all of the applications use.  The GUID is lined up appropriately between all of the applications to ensure proper reference counting in case a user installs our entire suite.  When a user would have version 7.0 installed of one of the applications and then install 7.5 of another, this shared resource in Common Files was not being upgraded.  It was causing a problem with our branding since this file handled our splash screens.  As you can imagine, marketing was not happy.

I generated a verbose log file during installation so I could see what was happening.  I immediately noticed this line:
MSI (c) (BC:24) [11:47:11:711]: Disallowing installation of component: {MY-GUID} since the same component with higher versioned keyfile exists

This was simply not the case and I was a little confused.  I was able to delete the file and initiate a repair, and the proper file would be installed.  This would be a little messy to instruct our users to do.  I also considered adding a RemoveFile entry, but the component costing is done before any files are removed so a repair would occur the first time our users ran the application.  This wasn't really an acceptable situation either.

I started to dig a little deeper to find what was causing it.  I went to the File table and the file was missing a version in the File table.  This puzzled me quite a bit.  I started digging through the Altiris knowledge base and found the problem:
KNOWN ISSUE: File versions not populated when using Wildcards and Path Variables

This really stung.  The workaround worked, but it was annoying and time consuming.  I am in the process of writing a macro that will pull the file version of all the files in the install and populate the File table where appropriate.  I will post this macro when complete and I hope it helps others in this situation.  I would hope Altiris would address this situation expeditiously as well. Posted on Friday, March 7, 2008 11:06 AM Windows Installer , Wise Installation | Back to top


Comments on this post: Got bit by a bug in Wise Installation Studio.

# re: Got bit by a bug in Wise Installation Studio.
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Interesting article. Nice one for getting to the bottom of it.

Here's the proper link the the KB info: https://kb.altiris.com/display/1n/articleDirect/index.asp?aid=34373&r=0.2947199

Hope the comments support links :-)
Left by MSIPackager on Jun 24, 2008 12:58 PM

# re: Got bit by a bug in Wise Installation Studio.
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Just got bit by this today -- thanks for posting! Here is the *new* url:

http://www.symantec.com/business/support/index?page=content&id=TECH28881
Left by Matt on Jan 24, 2011 3:08 PM

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