Deploying Office extensions – step-by-step guide
Add-in Express allows you to deploy an Office extension using the following technologies:
|Windows Installer||You create a regular MSI installer for either a per-user or per-machine installation. An MSI installer can be created in Visual Studio as well as in such popular software tools as InstallShield, WiX, etc. To update your Office extension, you uninstall its current version and install the new one.|
|ClickOnce||This technology targets non-admin installations; only per-user Office extensions can be installed in this way. When the user updates your Office extension, its previous version is uninstalled automatically.|
|ClickTwice :)||This is our own MSI-based Web deployment technology. ClickTwice :) allows standard users and administrators to run MSI setup packages from the web (Internet and Intranet) to install and update both per-user and per-machine Office extensions. This feature is explained in a series of our blog posts. The first post of the series is Add-in Express 2010 MSI-based web deployment – ClickTwice :).|
The table below gives an overview of the main features supported by the above mentioned technologies that you can use for deploying your Add-in Express based Office extensions.
|Feature||ClickOnce||Windows Installer||ClickTwice :)|
|Update from the Web||Yes||No||Yes|
|Rollback to a previous version||Yes||No||No|
|Security permissions granted||Grants only permissions necessary for the application (deploying COM add-ins, it always requires Full Trust).||Grants Full Trust by default||Grants Full Trust by default|
|Security permissions required||Internet or Intranet Zone (Full Trust for CD-ROM installation)||Standard user or Administrator||Standard user or Administrator|
|Installation-time user interface||Single prompt||Multipart wizard||Multipart wizard|
|Installation of shared files||No||Yes||Yes|
|Installation of drivers||No||Yes
(with custom actions)
(with custom actions)
|Installation to Global Assembly Cache||No||Yes||Yes|
|Installation for multiple users||No||Yes||Yes|
|Add entry to Start menu||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Add entry to Startup group||No||Yes||Yes|
|Add entry to Favorites menu||No||Yes||Yes|
|Register file types||No||Yes||Yes|
|Install time registry access||HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE (HKLM) accessible only with Full Trust permissions||Yes||Yes|
|Binary file patching||No||Yes||Yes|
|Installation location||ClickOnce application cache||Can be specified by the user during the installation||Can be specified by the user during the installation|
You can deploy your Add-in Express based Office extensions on the per-user or per-machine basis. Per-user Office extensions are available only for a particular user, while per-machine Office extensions are available for all users of a given computer.
Note. Smart tags, Excel Automation add-ins and XLL add-ins are strictly per-user Office extensions and cannot be installed for all users of the machine.
Which deployment technology to use?
This is a summary table referring you to step-by-step guides explaining how to create a setup project in accordance with your requirements:
COM add-ins, RTD servers, Smart tags, XLL add-ins, Excel Automation add-ins
COM add-ins and RTD servers
A user runs the installer from a CD/DVD, hard disk or local network location
A corporate admin uses Group Policy to install your Office extension for a specific group of users in the corporate network; the installation and registration occurs when a user logs on to the domain. Administrators can find more information about deploying such packages in the following article on our blog: HowTo: Install a COM add-in automatically using Windows Server Group Policy
A user runs the installer by navigating to a web location or by clicking a link.