I just recently created the 2014 Admin image so our company can start the upgrade process to 2014. Within the first hour of completing the image I was furious with the changes that were made. I know some people may like them, but I am don't.
The one change that I dislike is the ability to put in an invalid path under the "Global settings\Client installation Options\Settings file" this keeps unwanted users from installing SW from the image. Honestly the the real solution should be... if the PC name is not in the image at all, then the image should not install for that PC. But since it doesn't work like that, allowing an invalid path is the best way I know of to keep users out of the image.
Some people will say, "don't add anything to the global settings and it will do the same".... true, but the reason I do that, is because I want utilize the Hierarchy of folders. I set the Global settings up as if it was a group I am going to be placing PC names under. This allows me to create groups faster, since we cannot copy groups or copy group settings yet. (this is an SPR I turned in last year as well).
I have found a solution to this issue. Though I know its not supported I found the "Settings" path in the "Admin Director.xml" and simply removed the "\" from the path, saved the *.xml file.
Now when I bring up the Option Editor the Global settings path is invalid. All my installations so far have been successful with no issues. PC's not in a group, do not get SW installed, just like in the previous versions.
To Much info
I always send out the HTA file to all the users, so they can install in their own time. Some users are working on large assemblies while others are in the middle of a Design. The last thing they need is an update midway through the design process. So giving the users the a month to manually install seems to work very well for us. However the HTA file added the information about uninstalling. Most users don't need more information like this... they just need a button that they can click on. The more options you give them, the likely they are to make a mistake and cause me more work.
I edited the *.hta file and copied the HTML information out of hte file. Since my HTML skills are lacking, however I do know a little I was still wasn't sure what to remove. So I found a website that allowed me to see the preview of the HTML data. http://htmledit.squarefree.com/ Then I was able to find the info to remove so the users only see a single installation button.
This is the info I removed from the HTA file:
<div class="heading">Click <i>Uninstall SolidWorks products now</i> to start the uninstall of SolidWorks on the local computer:</div>
<div class="removeheading">Select the types of items to remove from the client computer. Unselected items will remain on the computer.</div>
<div class="removeitem"><input type="checkbox" disabled checked />Program Files and Folder</div>
<div class="removeitemdesc">Program Files and folders are removed by the standard uninstall.</div>
<div class="removeitem"><input type="checkbox" id="removeregistry" />Registry Entries</div>
<div class="removeitemdesc">This will remove serial numbers and custom settings from the registry.</div>
<div class="removeitem"><input type="checkbox" id="removedata" />Data Files and Folders</div>
<div class="removeitemdesc">This will delete custom files stored in the data folders on the client computer, such as Toolbox. It will not delete and files or folders from other folders, other computers, or network locations.</div>
<div><input type="button" value="Uninstall SolidWorks products now" onclick="uninstall()" /></div>
I have yet to release SW 2014 to all our users, but I have high hopes that these changes that I made to make my work life easier will not effect the users.... now if SW would just fix the Toolbox installation process from the image, I might stop complaining... of course I have a solution for that as well.
Reply if you have a different solution or tell me what you think.