Silent Installer Tips

There are many different installer types out there, each with their own ways of handling silent installs.  The information below is an attempt to cover the options that would be used in a typical campus install in SCCM.  General information about a number of them can be found on the following page:

The page above also list some tips on figuring out what type of installer is really in that .exe file.

NullSoft Scriptable Install System

Full Documentation (

Command Line Options (these are case sensitive):


Silent install and uninstall (must be upper case)


Where PATH is the install directory, only necessary if you need to install it to somewhere other than the default directory.


To exclude the Desktop Shortcut (/DS=1 to include it)


To include the Start Menu Shortcut (/SMS=0 to exclude it)


Silent uninstall only, where PATH is the install directory. Must be the last thing on the command line and must not include quotes.

***This also prevents the uninstaller from spawning a copy of itself in %TEMP% and exiting before the install is finished which has been noticed to cause a false “Removal Failed” status coming from SCCM.

Some of the apps known to use NullSoft Installers:  Pidgin, RStudio

NullSoft Examples:

Pidgin Silent Install, Start Menu Shortcut, No Desktop Shortcut:

pidgin_2.10.9_offline.exe /S /DS=0 /SMS=1

Pidgin Silent Uninstall:

"%ProgramFiles%\Pidgin\pidgin-uninst.exe" /S _?=%ProgramFiles%\Pidgin

Inno Setup

Setup Command Line (

Uninstall Command Line (

Command Line Installer Options:


Combined the above three options should run the installer completely silent with the default install options unless additional options are provided on the command line.


Prevents the installer from automatically restarting the computer


Log the installation where FILENAME is the log file.


Used when you need to run the installer in an attended mode to record the installation options and create an unattended answer file where FILENAME is the answer file.

By default, any items not in the INF file will use their default values, including the installation directory.  For most applications that install to the Program Files folder, if the INF file for a 32 bit application is captured on a 64 bit machine, it will capture the install dir in C:\Program Files (x86), and on a 32 bit machine C:\Program Files.  This will be hardcoded and when the install runs using that INF file it will use that path regardless of which architecture it is running on.  To have it detect and install to the correct directory, remove the “Dir=” line from the resulting INF file, which will cause it to select the default value.


Used to apply an unattended answer file where FILENAME is the answer file that was created with the /SAVEINF option.


Installs with the default set of installation tasks except for the desktop icon.