How to silently install Office 2003 Service Pack 3 through GPO

When a service pack is released and there are many computers need to be updated. If it is Microsoft product, you can mange update through WSUS. But in my case, even I have WSUS server but the server only has Windows patches which replicates from primary WSUS that receives only Windows patches from Microsoft. To install Office service pack 3, I can release the patch file through Group Policy Object in logon script with silent installation so that user won’t be interrupted by the setup file.

Step-by-step to silently install Office 2003 service pack 3

  1. Download Office SP3 (Office2003SP3-KB923618-FullFile-ENU.exe) from Microsoft.
  2. Create a temp folder for store extracted file on C:\temp. Extract the file to temp folder by run this command in the command line mode:
    “Office2003SP3-KB923618-FullFile-ENU.exe /c /t:C:\temp /q”.
    Note: You can type “Office2003SP3-KB923618-FullFile-ENU.exe /?” to view command line options.
    Office SP3 command line options
  3. Now you can see the extracted files on temp folder. MAINSP3.msp is the main Office service pack 3. OWC11SP3.msp and OWC102003SP3.msp are web components service pack 3 for Office XP and Office 2003 respestively.
    Office SP3 extracted files
  4. You can install Office Service Pack 3 by execute one of these commands below.
    • Install with NO user interface. When it finishes install the service pack 3, the computer will be force to restart automatically.
    • “msiexec /p C:\temp\MAINSP3.msp /qn”
      Command to install Office SP3 with restart after installation

    • Install with NO user interface and force not to restart after finish install the service pack 3.
    • “msiexec /p C:\temp\MAINSP3.msp /qn /norestart”
      Command to install Office SP3 with no restart after installation

    Note: If you need more command line options, type “msiexec /?”.
    msiexec command line options

  5. If you have to install on many computers, you can put the command in the Group Policy Object (GPO) in logon script and also move the service pack files (.msp) to share folder so that the file can be executed by others.
    • For example, I move MAINSP3.msp to \\BKKPDC01\temp which is share folder.
      Office SP3 on share folder
    • Then I add logon script in Domain Group Policy with this command
      Script Name: msiexec
      Parameters: /p \\bkkpdc01\temp\MAINSP3.msp /np /norestart
      to silent install Office SP3 silently with no restart after complete installation. Now when user logon to Windows with user on domain, the script will be executed automatically.
    • Note: This is only example If you need install this SP3 through GPO, you need to consider network performance issue. For instance, when many users are logon simulteneously, they also get the service pack file at the same time which can cause load on your network. You can solve this problem by not release this script to all users at the time.
      Release Office SP3 through GPO in logon script


8 Responses to “How to silently install Office 2003 Service Pack 3 through GPO”

  1. steve

    Does this script execute before or after a user signs in ? If after, does the user need to have Admin privilege ?

  2. linglom

    To Steve,
    It depends on where you have placed the script in between Computer or User configuration. In the example, I place the script in LogOn/LogOff script so it is in User Configuration.
    If it is in User Configuration, the script will run when the user has logged on to the system. If it is in Computer Configuration, the script will run when the computer has startup, regardless of who logs on to the computers.

    For privilege issue, if it is a logon script, the script will run under current user logon privilege (user’s permission). If it is a startup script, the script will run under system privilege on the local computer.

    One more thing, there is a policy which can elevated privileges. It is located in both Computer and User Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Installer -> Always install with elevated privileges. I never try this policy so I can’t support on this issue.

  3. Stone

    I don’t find any “msiexe” command, it said “msiexe” is not gecognized as an internal ore external command”, I am using windows server 2003 updated.
    So how can I get the command?

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