In a previous article I introduced the Package Library from PDQ Deploy. We spoke briefly about the Repository. I want to elaborate a little more about this Repository.
Repository. What is it and what can I do with it?
The Repository is simply a directory on the console computer (or a network share) where installation files can be stored. Any PDQ Deploy Package that you obtain from the Package Library will automatically reference the Repository via the $(Repository) variable.
When we decided to implement the Package Library we knew that we would run into one problem: Location, Location, Location.
We didn't want to have to direct our users to have to choose where to store their respective installation files. In order to get around this dilemma we decided to implement the Repository. After some fairly aggressive testing we decided that the DEFAULT location of the repository would be in the All Users Documents folder. For Windows Vista, 7, 2008 and 2008 R2 this is accessible by going to %PUBLIC%\Documents. In Windows XP and 2003 (there is no declared PUBLIC variable) we effectively use %AllUsersProfile%\Documents.
Change the default location of the Repository.
To change your Repository location, simply go to your Preferences window (File > Preferences) and navigate to the Repository panel. Type in the new path for your Repository in the field provided. Keep in mind, if you use the Pull Copy Mode (available in Pro mode) then your Repository MUST exist on a UNC available share. For example if you wanted to have your Repository in a Windows Share called Install on the server called Dexter you could use
At this time you will need to actually copy (or move) the files in the previous Repository to the new location. A future version of PDQ Deploy will attempt to move the existing installation files when the Repository location is changed.
Custom Packages and the Repository
All of you will have your own Packages that aren't provided by the Packages Library. You can, if you wish, have your installation files also exist in the Repository. You just need to reference the $(Repository) variable in your Package File field.
Our convention for storing installation files is simple. $(Repository)\VENDOR\Application. For example, Adobe Reader install files would be kept in $(Repository)\Adobe\Reader and Google Chrome install files would exist in $(Repository)\Google\Chrome. You can follow this convention if you wish but it's not mandatory. Just remember that Packages provided from the Package Library will use this convention.
So what are you waiting for? Go get your free copy of PDQ Deploy today.
My favorite feature of PDQ Deploy 2.0 is the Installer Library.
The Installer Library will soon (Summer 2012) move to a cost subscription model. Right now it's no-cost (while we iron out the wrinkles).
The Installer Library provides "Pre-sliced, rust-proof, easy-to-handle, low-calorie..." Installers for common applications and it is available within PDQ Deploy. You do need to have a connection to the internet to view and download available Installers.
You will notice that the Installers that you download will be placed in your Installers folder. But where are the actual Installation Files stored? The Setup.exe? The MSI files? They are copied to the Repository, which is another new feature with PDQ Deploy.
The Repository is, by default, placed in the All Users Documents folder. Go to your Preferences and you select the Repository panel and you will see what I mean.
Let's open up one of the Installers that we downloaded from the Library.
Now, you're ready to deploy Microsoft .NET 4 to your target computers.
See this video to see an example of deploying Adobe Flash Plugin, which was downloaded from the Installer Library.
Initially we are going to have a few popular Installers ready to go. While we always intend on having a few common Installers available the majority of the Installers will ultimately be available with a subscription. We are still working the subscription thing out.
A few words about the Repository. You do not HAVE to store your install files here. You must have, however, a valid directory (preferably a network share) that you define for your Repository. Any installer that is downloaded from the Library will be placed in this directory. Obviously to change the location of your repository go to File > Preferences. Select Repository. Change the path to a valid location. Please note that the credentials used by PDQ Deploy (PDQDeploy service (AKA Backgound Service) and your Deployment user(s)) must have the necessary rights to read and copy files from the Repository.
If you can't access the Installer Library you may need to provide your Proxy credentials. You can do that via the Preferences window. Just select Proxy Server panel and enter your credentials in the two fields.
Let us know what you think. From your Help menu select Submit Feedback. Please include your email address if you want us to write back with follow up questions or answers.
Refer to this post about the Installer Library and the $(Repository)
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