Deploy Latest Silverlight via SCCM using MSI

When creating packages in SCCM, I strongly prefer to use MSIs over EXEs. They’re just way simpler. A few clicks and you’ve got all the command lines there for you automatically, instead of having to test and re-test or guess at the command line switches for an EXE. One thing that boggles my mind is Microsoft’s inability to release MSIs for their own products. Silverlight and AdCenter both saw updates recently, and both were released as EXEs.

Here are some quick steps to take the Silverlight EXE and get a usable MSI from it:

  1. Download the EXE from Microsoft’s site here.
  2. Open the EXE using 7-Zip and extract the contents to a folder. You should have an MSI and an MSP as well as some other files.
  3. Open a command prompt in the folder you extracted the Silverlight files to.
  4. Use this command line to apply the patch to the installer: msiexec /a silverlight.msi /p silverlight.msp
  5. You’ll notice a new folder appears in the folder you extracted the files to called “PFiles.” Make sure you include this in your SCCM Source Files folder for the Silverlight installer, or the install will fail.

Once installed, future patches can be managed via Software Updates in SCCM.

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