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Question about Java deployment
Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:14 AM
I manage roughly about 1000 computer devices in my Active Directory organization / split between sites
I try to deploy java through group policy, but the problem is that it's sometimes not reliable due to old versions still lingering on some of the more ancient computers. And users, sometimes can't log in because Java deployment has gone wrong and has halted the PC waiting for administrator input. So I have had to resort to doing manual installs just because deploying it causes more hassle..
The main issue I find with Java is that the install does not remove the older versions, which I think is very annoying.
I am completely aware that if they were always deployed with group policy then old version removal is achievable but the problem is that this isn't the case, some were installed manually over the years. (And I have around 1000 pc's)
This has caused a real headache for me.
Adobe flash recently have started appearing through windows updates (on the IE 10 PC's) , I wish java would do the same.
So I'm wondering is there some other 3rd party patch deployment tool that would remove old versions of Java and install new ones
or is there a way to somehow allow Joe bloggs to install Java themselves without getting an elevated warning prompt asking for admin rights?
Does anybody else have another way around this as I find it probably ranked as number 1 most annoying network management task!
Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:34 PM
What versions of Java you are trying to install and what versions do you have on the 1000 PCs?
Java has some of the nastiest programming for an applications we use in our company when it comes to silent removal for old Java versions.
I had all kinds of issues using GPO to install software so I use PDQ Deploy and PDQ Inventory (free versions available for both) for software installations along with start-up scripts.
Obviously, you are extracting the msi from the exe then using GPO to install Java. You DO NOT want the user user to self install or update Java or any other apps themselves or you will have the same issues you are having now by not being able to uninstall previous Java versions.
The Java exe, at least, latest few versions, have a nice silent install just by using the /S switch. Use PDQ Inventory to uninstall old versions. As you stated, many of the old versions have broken installers, preventing them from being removed and or the newer versions from being installed. I recommend using WICU (Windows Installer Cleanup Utility-can be scripted for silent removals), IOBIT Uninstaller, or your other favorite force removal application to remove the bad version of Java.
Only after you clean all bad versions will you be able to install the latest version using GPO, PDQ Deploy, or your favorite other installer application.
I can provide some assistance on using the PDQ tools or WICU if you need any. Also, PDQ has excellent support for their tools.
Actually it may be easier if you have a lot of bad multiple Java versions installed to just reimage the client.
Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:43 AM
I did Java at University and used to love it very much.... But now that relationship has gone really bad..
Yes you have described exactly my problem. It's such a pain really! Thanks for the info about that software, I will try it.
I have used the Microsoft uninstaller utility before to remove broken Java, however I have heard that Microsoft pulled that utility because they said it could cause problems on your network.
to be honest It has worked every time for me so I don't see the fuss.
I was not sure that you could script uninstalls with that! That's interesting. I don't fancy manually running that utility on 1000 computers or re-imaging them either.
Edited by dubsdj, 04 December 2012 - 10:49 AM.
Posted 24 December 2012 - 01:48 AM
The only correct way of automatically removing old Java installations is by means of the Windows Management Instrumentation (WMIC).
It will remove any and all Java version on the system. You can use a vb script for that.
Installation of the updated Java package is a little tricky on x64 OS. First do the x64, afterwards the x86 part.
I made my own dual arch Java package based on Kels ideas, it kills and uninstalls automatically all old Java stuff by means of WMIC.
Haven't released it yet, but if you want to test it drop me a line.
Edited by Escorpiom, 24 December 2012 - 01:48 AM.
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