Phew! that was a mouthful. While some of you may say “Who cares about Office XP”, I happen to have a client that is still deploying Office XP on Terminal Server as they haven’t finished the preparation to move to Office 2007. So what is this blog entry about? Well there’s a bug in the Office XP Setup routine that will not allow you to suppress the installation of Microsoft Outlook when installed on a Terminal Server in silent mode. If you choose the option to not install Outlook when creating your Custom Installation Wizard transform, it will be ignored when you try to install it on a server (in TS App Mode). This obviously only affects you in the following circumstances:
- You’re still using Office XP (doesn’t matter which edition)
- You’re attempting to install on a server in TS Application Mode (standard Terminal Server/Citrix server config)
- You’re trying to not install Outlook as you use a different email software.
- You’re trying to automate the installation to push the software silently (i.e. either via Citrix Installation Manager or some other third party ESD, or even via Group Policy or command line using the /qn switch).
The behavior of the installer is such that it uses all settings from the transform, except for the one that says “Don’t install Outlook”. Outlook will be installed on the server no matter what you do. This is a confirmed bug by Microsoft, but since Office XP is beyond it’s support lifecycle, they won’t be fixing it.
Your options are:
1) Move to a supported Office product. DUH! I’ve confirmed that Office 2003 does not experience this issue. I haven’t tested Office 2007 yet.
2) Perform the installation manually. When installing manually, the installer does accept the suppression of Outlook.
3) Leave Outlook installed. This may be a conflict with your other email software though.
4) Let it install Outlook and then strip it out immediately after. This is the option I’ve chosen and it can be accomplished either by using the Office XP Resource Kit utility named Custom Maintenance Wizard, or you can invoke the installation MSI again using some custom switches as follows:
msiexec /i std.msi REMOVE=OUTLOOKFiles /qn
Hope this helps anyone who might be facing a similar issue.