Getting Started

EMCO MSI Package Builder is a packaging tool that allows you to repackage non-silent installations into silent MSI packages and create custom silent installations quickly and easily. The program uses a unique repackaging technology that allows converting almost any non-silent installation into a silent MSI to enable its automatic deployment using Group Policy or other software distribution tools. The same technology can be used for automatic creation of customized MSI packages. If you need to repackage applications into App-V or MSIX/AppX, the program can cope with this task as well.

Recommended Repackaging Environment

Using EMCO MSI Package Builder, you can benefit from the following features that are demonstrated in the course of this tutorial.

  • Multiple MSI packaging methods. Depending on the project, you can use one of the provided packaging methods that are suitable for that project. You can convert non-silent installations into a silent MSI automatically using Live Monitoring. In the specific cases, when Live Monitoring cannot be used, you can wrap installations into an MSI package if those installations can be deployed silently.
  • Best-in-class repackaging technology. The program allows you to repackage a non-silent installation of any complexity into a silent MSI package. The program supports repackaging of installations that perform complex changes such as modifying file system and registry permissions, installing Windows services and drivers, changing Windows environment variables, etc.
  • Automatic MSI creation. The program allows you to repackage EXE to MSI automatically: you just need to go through the deployment steps of the original EXE installation, and the program will capture all the performed changes on the fly and generate an MSI for you. You can also use the Live Monitoring technology to monitor any activity on a PC and generate an MSI reproducing the captured changes.
  • Easy MSI customization. Having created an MSI package, you can edit it, if required. You can have an access to all captured changes to modify them or add additional changes. You can also configure the MSI package to execute any scripts or executable files before and after the MSI installation.
  • Repackaging on virtual machines. You can repackage installations not only on a local machine but also on virtual machines by connecting to Hyper-V, VMware and VirtualBox servers. In this case, you can install a single copy of the program and repackage installations on different virtual machines.
  • Repackaging in Windows Sandbox. You can use Windows Sandbox running on the local machine for repackaging installations in a clean environment. Windows Sandbox is available on the modern Windows versions, it doesn’t require any setup and allows you to repackage installations in an isolated, clean OS environment.
  • App-V packaging. In addition to generating MSI packages, the program can also create App-V packages. The procedure of repackaging into virtual packages is the same as repackaging into MSI, so you only need to change the output format. Moreover, if you have a previously stored project, you can open it and generate an App-V package without repeating the repackaging process.
  • MSIX/AppX packaging. Together with generating classic MSI packages and App-V virtualization packages, the program can also create MSIX (targeting Windows 10 October 2018 Update or later) or AppX (earlier versions of Windows 10) packages, that can be distributed through Windows Store, installed by sideloading or distributed in local networks.
  • Packages deployment testing. The program enables testing of packages by deploying them on a local machine or VM to verify installation, uninstallation, and functionality.

In the following chapters, you will learn about different packaging methods offered by the program and will see how to use them in practice. In addition, you will get a brief overview of the installation repackaging internals and best practices. Finally, you will learn how to test generated packages and how to troubleshoot packaging problems.

What's Inside