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Dot Net Demystified?


CelticWhisper
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I've been doing unattended-install work for a few years now, focusing mostly on automation and driver integration, but I've hit the point where I think I've got that stuff down to a science. The .NET framework, though, vexes me more and more with each passing install.

I've searched for information on this forum and elsewhere about automating the install of .NET framework components and while I know the information is available, it's not terribly approachable. A lot of the discussions are at a very low level, involving people who've had sleeves rolled up and hands dirty for a long time and are using terms quite alien to me. Other times I'll find one suggestion, see a reply that it didn't work, and see no further replies on how to continue forward.

I've heard of RyanVM Integrators, extracting .NET installers, the different stages (T-13, cmdlines.txt, /integrate switches) to run them at, but a lot of this seems either contradictory, inconsistent in results, or incomplete (e.g. I use this installer at T-13...'kay, but do I extract it or not? If so, what do I run? The EXE? The MSI? What?) and it's all starting to run together in my head.

I guess what I'm asking is this: Is there a recommended starting point for taming .NET installers? The ones I'm most concerned with automating are version 2.0 because nLite requires it, the stonking huge 3.5 Family Update because it takes forgoddamnever to install and that gets tiring over multiple test-runs, and 4.0 because...latest and greatest?

I know from reading that these are not the easiest things in the world to install and it seems a lot of people are fighting with them. If it's just the nature of the beast that they're not intuitive at all to install, I completely respect that and don't expect special treatment. My concern, though, is that there IS an easy solution out there and I've just been missing it.

TL;DR Version: Where can I go for simple, explicit, straightforward instructions on how to integrate as many versions as possible of the .NET framework and its updates? I'm drowning in information overload and don't want to chase tried-but-disproved solutions.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give. You'll have saved my sanity and that's worth a lot to me.

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Silent .NET Maker has been broken for quite a while. It's no longer maintained.

Still works well for .NET up to 3.5 ;) Only .NET 4.0 is not supported as far as I know.

Edited by tomasz86
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When I try with 2.0 the updates don't take. Just doing it without updates should work fine though but that's not the point of SDNMS is it?

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I have some experience with SNM and I can say it definitely works with the updates in the first post. Now, if one is eager enough to go back some 5 pages from the end, they will see up to which point the updates go. For me, it started failing with the 3-4 updates that needed to be repacked with IExpress. Taking into consideration 2 things:

1. The newer updates surely supersede a lot of the old ones;

2. SNM itself includes a lot of .MST files that contain fixes for proper update installation, absent for the newer updates;

I'm not too sure it's still a good idea to use it.

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i run .3.5 & .4 called from runonce at the end and no issue using this inside my app_install.cmd file

START /WAIT %CDROM%\Apps\dotNET\dotnetfx35_x86.exe /quiet /norestart

START /WAIT %CDROM%\Apps\misc\sleep.exe /t:30 /s:1

START /WAIT %CDROM%\Apps\dotNET\dotNetFx40_Full_x86_x64 /quiet /norestart

START /WAIT %CDROM%\Apps\misc\sleep.exe /t:30 /s:1

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