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Converting EXE to MSI for Deployment RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,

    I was wondering if anybody could recommend a free solution to convert EXE installers to MSIs for Deployment. There are some I've found, however the straight conversion hardly ever works, and I've found you need to tell the installer creator the location of buttons to get it to create a working one. Does anybody know of any free ones, as the only one I've found that's worked has cost about $200?

    Thanks

    • Changed type Lawrence, Monday, December 19, 2011 1:16 AM
    Tuesday, December 13, 2011 5:26 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    Thanks for your posting.

    After researched and tested we found no Microsoft solution can convert EXE file to MSI file at present.

    You can use third party tools to achieve that, but these third party tools are not tested and confirmed by Microsoft.

    We provide two workarounds:

    1. Contact software provider to get a MSI file.
    2. Deploy Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) to deploy EXE files.

    For more information please refer to following MS articles:

    Configuration Manager Planning and Deployment Overview
    http://technet.microsoft.com/library/bb693806
    How to Manage Packages
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb680528.aspx

    Lawrence Lv

    TechNet Community Support

    • Marked as answer by Lawrence, Monday, December 19, 2011 1:16 AM
    Wednesday, December 14, 2011 8:11 AM

All replies

  • WinInstall LE is a good one.

    The EXE may also have an MSI in it.

     

    http://automatedoutofajob.blogspot.com/2011/11/quick-tip-on-extracting-msis.html 

    • Proposed as answer by bhesterberg Friday, January 23, 2015 2:13 PM
    Tuesday, December 13, 2011 5:29 PM
  • Do you know of any sorta tutorials for WinInstall LE, because it doesn't seem to be the most logical program (although probably really powerful).

    On the extracting point, in particular I was thinking of Adobe Reader. If I extract that I get AcroRead.msi, but also Data1.cab and a few others. Would WinInstall be able to combine them?

    • Proposed as answer by MARK7208 Wednesday, June 29, 2016 4:30 PM
    Tuesday, December 13, 2011 7:07 PM
  • Well , How about installing Terminal Services ?? ;) , It has the capability of converting apps to .MSI & .rdp ;) ;)

    1- install the app on the server.
    2- install Terminal services or RDS
    3-from the Remote app manager console you can choose Add app & then you will find a button down there to convert the app whether to .MSI or .rdp ;)


    Good Luck :) ..


    Tarek El-Touny MCTS : Windows Server 2008 Infrastructure & Active Directory Microsoft Student Partner
    Tuesday, December 13, 2011 10:56 PM
  • I always check these places:

    C:\ProgramData\
    C:\Users\username\AppData\Local
    C:\Users\username\AppData\Locallow 
    Very rarely C:\Program Files\ 

    Actually running the .exe will extract the contents in one of the locations above. I usually dont proceed with the install b/c the installer will most likely delete the extracted msi after it's finished. 

    If none of the above work, I use a combination of Winzip, 7zip, or WinRar.  It's also just as easy to download a trial version of VMware Thinapp and use that software to build an msi.

    Not the prettiest solution, but one of the above works for everything I do. 

    Wednesday, December 14, 2011 12:50 AM
  • Hi,

    Thanks for your posting.

    After researched and tested we found no Microsoft solution can convert EXE file to MSI file at present.

    You can use third party tools to achieve that, but these third party tools are not tested and confirmed by Microsoft.

    We provide two workarounds:

    1. Contact software provider to get a MSI file.
    2. Deploy Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) to deploy EXE files.

    For more information please refer to following MS articles:

    Configuration Manager Planning and Deployment Overview
    http://technet.microsoft.com/library/bb693806
    How to Manage Packages
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb680528.aspx

    Lawrence Lv

    TechNet Community Support

    • Marked as answer by Lawrence, Monday, December 19, 2011 1:16 AM
    Wednesday, December 14, 2011 8:11 AM
  • Advanced Installer has some dedicated support for this: http://www.advancedinstaller.com/user-guide/tutorial-convert-exe-to-msi.html

    But it's a commercial tool, so you would need a license. A free alternative would be the AppDeploy repackager: http://www.itninja.com/link/appdeploy-repackager-kace-com-download-link


    Cosmin Pirvu
    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.


    Wednesday, June 13, 2012 10:26 AM
  •  

    Try free Exe To Msi converter. This simple utility wraps an exe installer into MSI package. The exe installer can be executed in silent mode during MSI install.

    http://exetomsi.com/freeware.php

    

    • Edited by Danhhh Friday, November 30, 2012 2:22 PM
    Friday, November 30, 2012 2:22 PM
  • The best solution so far with support for upgrades and uninstallation is the MSI Wrapper from www.exemsi.com. The thing is that sometimes you also need to upgrade or uninstall something that you successfully rolled out with a GPO under Active Directory. The installation is only half the job :-)
    Saturday, February 9, 2013 8:17 PM
  • In the most of cases you don't need to use any converter, because today most of EXE setups support silent deployment, so you can deploy them through SCCM, or other tools silently. You have to search the information about silent parameters in Internet or contact software vendor. If you need to deploy an EXE that doesn't support silent installation you can use a repackaging tools. According to my expereience free tools are unreliable, because they just wrap EXE in MSI. If you know parameters you can deploy EXE without wrapping it into MSI. In GPO you can create a ZAP file, for example.

    I know only commercial tools that do the repackaging job well. You can try Flexera AdminStudio - it's very expencive, but I preffer an easier and cheaper EMCO MSI Package Builder: http://emcosoftware.com/msi-package-builder/convert-exe-to-msi.

    Friday, May 24, 2013 2:43 PM
  • Another good tool is the ZOLA MSI Repackager from ZOLA. It has a very easy to use interface
    and a good protection filters for all operating systems to protect OS components. It works pretty
    well and not so expensive msi repackager tool.

    You can get more info from their website zolasoftware.com

    Tuesday, October 7, 2014 4:57 PM
  • Four years later... Try this for the latest version(s) of Adobe Reader and such.

    https://helpx.adobe.com/enterprise/package/help/deploying-acrobat.html

    Monday, March 19, 2018 8:42 PM
  • Hello 

    a few years after , I couldn't find a free tool to wrap a folder/exe into MSI so I've made one (in dotnet C#)

    here is the link (free winform tool):

    http://legacy.averbouch.biz/fr/free-msi-wrapper-for-sscm/


    Regards,


    Xavier Averbouch
    Microsoft Community Contributor
    SOAT
    If a post answers your question, please click "Mark As Answer" on that post and "Vote as Helpful".


    Saturday, September 1, 2018 4:10 PM