Manually adding App-V application to cache through command line

When I’m troubleshooting an App-V application one of the first things I check is whether the application is loading and running on that particular client. To rule out distribution issues I find myself more than often adding the application manually to the client cache. If you don’t have the ability of supporting tools like my own “ACDC” you have to know that this can easily be done through command line as well. In fact this is basically what ACDC is doing for you.

Keep in mind that you must have set the client to “Standalone Mode”, as decribed here

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Softgrid\4.5\Client

· Configuration\RequireAuthorizationIfCached = 0

· Configuration\AllowIndependentFileStreaming = 0

I’ll show you how to do this is in 6 easy steps with a sequenced version of Microsoft Office Live Meeting 2007

Step 1. Copy the binaries to the local machine in a temporary folder (i.e. C:\Temp)

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Step 2. Open the command line as an Administrator (right click while pressing SHIFT)

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Step 3. Browse to the temporary location and type “notepad [the name of any osd file in the sequence]”

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Step 4. In notepad copy the [Package Name] to the clipboard and close notepad.

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Step 5. On the command line type “sftmime add package:”[paste your clipboard]” /manifest [name of the manifest file]”

tip: press the [Tab] or SHIFT + [TAB] key after /manifest to locate the correct file.

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Shortcuts and File associations should appear on your machine now.

Step 6: On the command line press up to bring back the previous command line. Alter the command line to “sftmime load package:”[Package Name]” /sftpath [name of the sft file]

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That’s it the package is now made locally available.

Sneak preview of a seriously cool add-on for App-V

Immidio will be releasing Immidio AppScriber 2.0 the coming month. This might be the coolest productivity add-on for Microsoft App-V. As I have blogged before, AppScriber is a web-based add-on for existing deployment solutions, which provides application Self-Provisioning.

Version 2.0 of AppScriber now finally adds a configurable workflow engine, which allows you to optionally configure “Approvers” for applications. Which means, that besides users can automatically enable ”General” applications for themselves, for some applications you decide on (Managed applications), upon user request, a notification e-mail will be sent to the associated “Approver”. The approver can then Accept or Reject this request. After this an e-mail will be sent back to the user with the decision the approver made and if accepted the application will be automatically deployed.

I created a video which demonstrates Immidio AppScriber 2.0 in conjunction with Microsoft App-V from a user and approver perspective.

For more information about Immidio AppScriber go to http://www.immidio.com/

Application virtualization candidates

Just Zarb wrote a nice approach when an organization is starting on virtualizing their application portfolio.

The first step in such a project is to identify which applications are installed and used in your environment. If your application delivery method currently consists of automating applications you probably have a good insight in this information. Software distribution mechanisms (like Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager) usually provide great reports for this particular scenario.

If you don’t have an ESD in your environment you might want to look at the freely available Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit, which has some basic inventory functionality as well.

Now having software installed on your enterprise workstations doesn’t mean that the application is mandatory for the end-user or the organization. More than once when I support customers in this particular process, application reduction is one of the most time consuming activities. Mostly due to political discussions.

Once you know which applications need to be deployed throughout your organization you should find out if there are good virtualization candidates.

Microsoft evaluates the potential candidate and places the application into one of three categories:

  • Ideal Candidate. Applications meet all of the possible candidate criteria and have no identifiable roadblocks to success.
  • Possible Candidate. Applications do not meet disqualifying criteria but may require additional research or validation.
  • Not a Candidate. Applications are more expensive to virtualize than the benefits achieved from virtualization. This category also includes applications that technically cannot be virtualized because of current limitations.
  • Remember that virtualization candidates are not only based on technical limitations of the application virtualization product you are using. Sometimes functional restrictions can weigh just as much.

    Original article here.
    Microsoft case study here.