Creating a Windows Installer Package

Published: March 2, 2011

Updated: March 2, 2011

Applies To: Windows Server 2008 R2

You can use the RemoteApp Wizard to create a Microsoft Windows Installer (.msi) package from any program in the RemoteApp Programs list. For more information about how to distribute Windows Installer packages to users, see Distributing RemoteApp Programs to Users.

Membership in the local Administrators group, or equivalent, on the RD Session Host server that you plan to configure, is the minimum required to complete this procedure. Review details about using the appropriate accounts and group memberships at Local and Domain Default Groups (

  1. On the RD Session Host server, open RemoteApp Manager. To open RemoteApp Manager, click Start, point to Administrative Tools, point to Remote Desktop Services, and then click RemoteApp Manager.

  2. In the RemoteApp Programs list, click the program that you want to create a Windows Installer package for. To select multiple programs, press and hold the CTRL key when you click each program name.

  3. In the Actions pane for the program or selected programs, click Create Windows Installer Package.

    If you selected multiple programs, the settings described in the rest of this procedure apply to all of the selected programs. A separate Windows Installer package is created for each program.

  4. On the Welcome to the RemoteApp Wizard page, click Next.

  5. On the Specify Package Settings page, do the following:

    1. In the Enter the location to save the packages box, accept the default location or click Browse to specify a new location to save the Windows Installer package.

    2. In the Remote Desktop Session Host settings area, click Change to modify the server name or the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) port number. When you are finished, click OK.

    3. In the RD Gateway settings area, click Change to modify or to configure whether clients will use an RD Gateway server to connect to the target RD Session Host server across a firewall. (For more information about these settings, see Configuring Remote Desktop Gateway Settings.) When you are finished, click OK.

    4. To digitally sign the file, in the Certificate settings area, click Change to select or to change the certificate. (For more information, see About Digitally Signing RemoteApp Programs.) Select the certificate that you want to use, and then click OK.

  6. When you are finished, click Next.

  7. On the Configure Distribution Package page, do the following:

    1. In the Shortcut icons area, specify where the shortcut icon for the program will appear on client computers.

    2. In the Take over client extensions area, configure whether to take over client file name extensions for the program.

      If you associate the file name extensions on the client computer with the RemoteApp program, all file name extensions that are handled by the program on the RD Session Host server will also be associated on the client computer with the RemoteApp program. Note that users are not prompted whether the RD Session Host server should take over file extensions for the program.

      To view what file name extensions are associated with a program on the RD Session Host server, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Default Programs. Click Associate a file type or protocol with a program to view the file name extensions and their default associated program.

      Do not install Windows Installer packages that were created with this setting enabled on the RD Session Host server itself. If you do, clients that use the Windows Installer package may not be able to start the associated RemoteApp program.

  8. After you have configured the properties of the distribution package, click Next.

  9. On the Review Settings page, click Finish.

    When the wizard is finished, the folder where the Windows Installer package was saved opens in a new window. You can confirm that the Windows Installer (.msi) package was created.

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