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balazs_pal
Pilgrim

Uninstall not complete and custom file uninstall

We are using InstallShield 2013 LE product for a while to deploy product and product updates to our customers. However, there are some questions we cannot resolve with InstallShield 2013 Limited Edition.

- There are temporary files remaining in C:\Users\\AppData\Local\Temp\\ *.* (remaining files: *.prq, the installer exe, and *.ini files)
These files should not remain on the computer when user cancels the install wizard process or removes the program from Add or Remove programs. In Windows XP and Windows 7 with most of the tests we ran, these files (*.prq files, install information (*.ini) and the installer (*.exe)) remained on the target computer in this Temp folder. We must guarantee that these files are removed (because of security issues) from the computer in both cases (cancel install, uninstall). My question is: is it possible to solve this problem with the InstallShield 2013 LE? We are is open to the paid solutions (Professional) of your product if solving the problem in LE is not applicable. Can these problems be solved with the Professional version? (maybe with InstallScript)

I would like to have an another question:
- Our software generates many user- and user activity specific data (files and folders) which should be removed when our customer removes our product. This should be optional (eg. another install later, like do not remove saved games when uninstalling a game). Is there any solution to handle these cases? When uninstalling the software from Add or Remove programs, user should be presented with a question to remove everything or keep those files, and when choosing remove all, the installer should delete these user specific files (should not be a custom action or other dirty solutions). Another tricky thing is that the number of these files might increase over time (so these cannot be specified filename to filename).
I hope this problem can also be solved with your product (Limited Edition, but we are interested in paid (Professional) version also).

Please provide us some help and information regarding these questions.
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4 Replies
Flexera chiranjeevi
Flexera

Re: Uninstall not complete and custom file uninstall

Hello,

Regarding the temporary files left behind in temp folder:

Generally, after a system reboot, those files left behind (if any) should be removed. However, if you required to explicitly removing the files in temporary folder, you would need to create and schedule a custom action (one which is supported in ISLE like vbscript, EXE etc...) appropriately to remove unnecessary files from temp locations.

Regarding user activity specific data:

You would definitely need to create a custom action (installscript is preferred) and schedule it after InstallFinalize action as the installer doesn’t aware of the files, which were created after installation.

Installshield limited edition has its own restrictions to execute custom action in some sequences, hence I would suggest you to use installshield professional or premier editions to achieve the required behavior using custom actions and RemoveFiles table in direct editor.

Please let us know if you require any further information on this.

Regards,

Chiranjeevi
Installshield Support Engineer
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balazs_pal
Pilgrim

Re: Uninstall not complete and custom file uninstall

Thank you for the answer! I might have some further questions.
chiranjeevi wrote:

Generally, after a system reboot, those files left behind (if any) should be removed. However, if you required to explicitly removing the files in temporary folder, you would need to create and schedule a custom action (one which is supported in ISLE like vbscript, EXE etc...) appropriately to remove unnecessary files from temp locations.

The problem is, custom actions cannot be run when the user cancels the install. Cancellation should mean no temp files left, and more test results show that half the time after restart there are these files left behind (Windows XP, Windows 7 and rarely Windows 8). Is there post-install event to run my custom action with InstallScript? So when user cancels the install and clicks "Finish" on the "Unsuccessful install" dialog, we could run that specific custom action.
But how to determine the target files? The folder seems to have random name (different each time the same installer is executed), and custom action might remove folders that should not be deleted (eg. similar, but important folder to the user). What if installer locks those files (so cannot be removed) until installer is closed?

chiranjeevi wrote:

I would suggest you to use installshield professional or premier editions to achieve the required behavior using custom actions and RemoveFiles table in direct editor.

If adding those temp files to the RemoveFile table during installation, installer will guarantee that (even if user cancels the install) those files will be removed? But we are still having problems to determine the random folder name in the specific execute sequence.

Regarding the second question about user-specific files, we are currently using post-uninstall custom action and it works. However, is it possible to show a standard InstallShield dialog with our question (Do you want to remove your user specific files?) with the appropriate answers (yes/no) or checkbox (tick + Remove those files)?
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balazs_pal
Pilgrim

Re: Uninstall not complete and custom file uninstall

This problem still exists! Installer does not remove these temporary files and I cannot find any custom action that fires when user cancels the install (I have a basic MSI project). When install was successful, the custom action can be started.
I am also not sure, that these files can be deleted via custom action, because these files are required to run the installer (the unpacked zip itself). These should be removed automatically without any custom action magic! What is the reason that these files sometimes remain, sometimes properly disappear? How to enforce the proper behavior?
Thank you in advance,
Balázs
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Flexera chiranjeevi
Flexera

Re: Uninstall not complete and custom file uninstall

Hello,

I do agree with you. However you can schedule a custom action aftersystemchanges predefined action during uninstallation in installshield limited edition (but installscript custom actions are not supported in installshield limited edition other types like dll, exe, vbscript, JScript etc…are supported).

It’s expected that the files in temp folder are created with random names by default; hence you would need to delete the entire temp files and release any such handles or locks if you wish to explicitly delete the files from temp location.

Regarding your query on custom dialogs, you will be able to create and add custom dialogs in installshield setup using installshield professional or premier editions.

Regards,
Chiranjeevi
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