21 May.

Office 365 ProPLUS Deployment update

The May update to Office 365 ProPlus included a few changes, but from the deployment side the biggest change is that you have more control over the components that get installed for the user. If you aren’t familiar with benefits of Office 365 ProPlus take a look at this previous post. To get started you need to download the latest Office Deployment Tool for Click-to-Run from Microsoft, which is only a small download.

Once downloaded, the installation is a simple affair.

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It’s just a matter of accepting the license terms and clicking continue.

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Choosing an extraction folder.

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And that’s it. There’s no lengthy installation process because it’s just extracting a couple of small files to the selected folder.

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Once extracted, you can see that there are just two files, the setup.exe file, which is fairly self explanatory, and the configuration.xml file.

<Configuration>

  <!–  <Add SourcePath=”\\Server\Share\” OfficeClientEdition=”32″ >
<Product ID=”O365ProPlusRetail”>
<Language ID=”en-us” />
</Product>
<Product ID=”VisioProRetail”>
<Language ID=”en-us” />
</Product>
</Add>  –>

  <!–  <Updates Enabled=”TRUE” UpdatePath=”\\Server\Share\” /> –>

  <!–  <Display Level=”None” AcceptEULA=”TRUE” />  –>

  <!–  <Logging Path=”%temp%” />  –>

  <!–  <Property Name=”AUTOACTIVATE” Value=”1″ />  –>

</Configuration>

So there’s nothing that really stands out in the sample file, but once we start digging in to the documentation I’ve linked to further in this post we find that there are more options available.

<Configuration>

<Add SourcePath=”\\Server01\Office\” OfficeClientEdition=”32″>

<Product ID=”O365ProPlusRetail”>

<Language ID=”en-us” />

<ExcludeApp ID=”Access” />

<ExcludeApp ID=”InfoPath”/>

</Product>

</Add>

</Configuration>

In the above example I’ve bolded the ability to exclude applications from being exposed to the user, in this case  Access and InfoPath, which probably aren’t being used by that large of a percentage of the ProPlus installed base. The applications that you exclude may change on a deployment by deployment basis, one large project I’m involved with at the moment is going to benefit greatly from this because they only want the users to see OneNote, Word, Excel and PowerPoint, and don’t want support requests around other components, including the Lync client, especially considering that they haven’t performed a Lync rollout for all of the users. 

Looking for more information? Check out these links

Customization overview for Click-to-Run
Office Deployment Tool for Click-to-Run
Click-to-Run for Office 365 Configuration.xml file
Download Click to Run for Office 365 products by using the Office Deployment Tool
Deploy Click-to-Run for Office 365 products by using the Office Deployment Tool

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