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Understanding Prism's Uninstall (Rollback) Files

Pam
Deploying Tasks to Computers

The information in this article applies to:

• Prism Deploy

• Prism Pack

Overview:

Prism’s Uninstall or Rollback files (.PWR) hold the compressed information that Prism needs to put a system back the way it was before a Prism Package was installed. If you do not want to keep the changes made by Prism, you can simply uninstall them. Below are some key points that explain how Uninstall files work for Prism Deploy and Prism Pack Packages and Self-Installing files.

Prism generates two Uninstall files when a Prism Package is applied. Prism separates the file into user and computer-specific settings during the Package installation and creates a specific Uninstall file for each. When uninstalling the Prism Package, you can do any of the following:

·         Uninstall the entire Prism file

·         Uninstall only the user-specific settings or only the computer-specific settings using the command /UninstallPackage with the switches /CommonInfo and /UserInfo. For more information on the switches that can be used with the /UninstallPackage command, see Appendix A of the Prism User’s Guide.

Uninstall files are unique to each target system. For example, Machine A may already have the same version of a DLL that is contained in a Prism file. Therefore, when the Prism file is installed and the Uninstall file is created on that system, the Uninstall file contains information about incrementing the DLL counter. Machine B has an older version of the DLL, so the Prism file updates the DLL, and the older version is stored in the Uninstall file, in case the Prism file needs to be rolled back.

If a Prism file is installed more than once on the same system without rolling back a previous installation, Prism tracks this information in the registry and stores additional Uninstall files. Each new Uninstall file tracks only the information that was changed by each subsequent installation of the Prism file. If you decide you do not want to keep the changes made by the file, you will have a choice: undo just the changes from the last time the file was installed or undo all the changes from every time the file was installed.

Uninstall files will not undo changes unless the changes are the same ones Prism put on the system. For example, a Prism file may install a new version of a DLL; the Uninstall file stores a copy of the older DLL. If another program updates that DLL in the meantime and then you decide to uninstall the Prism file, Prism will not replace the DLL with the older version stored in the Uninstall file. The version now on the system is not the same version of the file that Prism installed.

Where Prism Stores Uninstall Files

When a Prism file is installed, the Uninstall file is stored by default in a folder called Unapply in one of the following locations:

Note: These are the default locations for Prism version 5.x.  Depending on what product you have a folder named Prism Deploy or Prism Pack is being created.

·         On Windows 95/98 systems: C:\Windows\Prism Deploy\Unapply.

·         On Windows NT systems: C:\Winnt\Profiles\All Users\Application Data\Prism Deploy\Unapply

·         On Windows ME/2000/XP or higher systems: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Prism Deploy\Unapply.

·         When installing Packages through the Editor on your own computer, Uninstall files are stored in the folder that you specified under Package | Options on the Uninstall tab.

·         In the folder that you specified in the registry of the target computers: HKCU\Software\Lanovation\Picture Taker\Settings\Directories, Unapply Folder = [path] 

For more information see the related tech note Q10033: "Changing the Default Location for Prism Uninstall (Rollback) Files."

Uninstalling Self-Installing Files

If you want to give the recipients of your Self-Installing files the ability to remove or uninstall the software or configuration changes you are delivering, you have two options:

·         If you are delivering a software application, the application itself may create its own "uninstall" option when you originally build the Self-Installing file. In that case, Prism captures the uninstall method and delivers it as part of the Self-Installing file. Most software applications handle this by putting an entry in the Add/Remove Programs area of Control Panel and placing an uninstaller program on the hard drive.

·         If you are delivering configuration changes, new files or folders, or software that does not automatically create an uninstaller, you must check the box Add an entry to Add/Remove Programs when the file is run in the Self-Installing file's properties. You must also enter the description to be entered in the Add/Remove Programs area of Control Panel.

When you use the second option to configure the uninstall capability, Prism Deploy creates a folder called SIFXINST in one of the following folders on the target system:

C:\Program Files

C:\Program Files\Common

C:\Windows\System

C:\Windows

C:\  

It then places an uninstaller program called sifxinst.exe and the Uninstall files for the Self-Installing file in the folder. The names of the Uninstall files are the same as the Self-Installing file with a number appended for each additional time the file is installed. The extension of the files is PWR.


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