7 Replies Latest reply on May 25, 2014 5:29 PM by Jim Gilliver

    Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client

    Jim Gilliver Pioneer

      We are in the process of addressing some outstanding issues in the OS X clients, and I wanted to see if anyone has any suggestions for packaging improvements.  Have you run into any problems with deployment or customisation that could have been handled better?  Are there any flaws in the package that you currently have to work around?

        • Re: Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client
          Jason Pelletier Tracker

          I guess this would depend on what issues you're currently seeing. We tend to repackage a lot of different installers from different vendors. We didn't repackage the base popup and notify packages but we did bundle them, along with printer drivers and printer choices, into a metapackage with a few slight adjustments such as ensuring we start the launch agent without really needing a reboot/logout. This year we do plan on stripping the whole thing apart, putting it back together and digitally sign it so that Gatekeeper will be happy. Overall though we haven't had much issue with the base packages.

            • Re: Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client
              Jim Gilliver Pioneer

              I was more wondering about the issues we don't see, and any suggestions that might make your life a little easier.  What were you seeing with the launchagent, and how did you fix it?  As far as I can tell, the current package doesn't need a reboot/logout to work (though we did have some early packages that didn't quite do the right thing), but there could be other factors.

               

              Is there a reason you put everything into a metapackage?  This might be one of those customer needs we never hear about.  Do you use a deployment system that requires .pkg or .mpkg rather than .dmg files?

                • Re: Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client
                  Jason Pelletier Tracker

                  We were seeing that sometimes the agent wouldn't load as it should but instead of forcing a restart or logout we simply attempted an unload of the launch agent and then a reload of the agent during a postinstall script. 

                   

                  We put everything in a single package for easy of use by our students. Instead of needing to install Notify and then a popup package for each printer, we bundle them all together and put notify in with popup and then use different sub packages to install each printer depending on the selection in the selection screen if Installer. This way a student could choose one or many different printers. We have many choices because of the variety of drivers that we use and different models of printers. If we had a single model then it would be a moot point. We also use this to install the printer drivers that are needed since most students wouldn't have the Ricoh printer drivers in the OS X installs by default.

                   

                  Finally, since you asked, we use Munki for all machines (faculty, staff and students) which is quite handy and we could use the DMGs but we can use the smaller sub-packages from the metapackage (or use an XML file to select which printer(s) we want) from Munki as well and it works perfect. We have different manifests for different spaces and the printers are always there. And before you ask, we don't manage student machines at all, we simply ask them to install a custom Munki package so that they then have access to the free software available to them.

              • Re: Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client
                J.C. Doll Wayfarer

                Better integration with the administrator console would be nice, so that when we build the Windows Installer packages it also builds the OSX package.  Maybe some like adding a field that allows us to point to the PPD for the printer, then using something like 7zip dll's to manipulate the DMG.

                  • Re: Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client
                    David Marcinkowski Scout

                    “so that when we build the Windows Installer packages it also builds the OSX package. “

                     

                     

                     

                    This would be great …… my main concern with the Mac OSX popup is the sometimes slowness for the popup to come up.

                     

                     

                     

                    Overall performance enhancements is what should be focused on ….

                     

                     

                     

                    david

                    • Re: Improvements to the OS X installers for the Popup Client
                      Yadin Flammer Navigator

                      I agree with the sentiment, but I can definitely see where this wouldn't be possible from Windows.  More likely a stand along packaging app for the Mac.  I would definitely like to see a UI tool rather than manually writing scripts and hunting down ppd files and printer files to bundle in and have copied in a post flight.  The process now seems very 10 years ago, and even a step down from what it was before where you could just edit a plist file.  Since Apple and those making Mac drivers have gone largely to this system of not providing drivers, you have to let the OS install them magically from Apple in the background by direct adding the printer, it seems the only way to really get drivers set up to capture for the popup installer is to have this dedicated setup machine.  At that point, a GUI tool that can look at the printer objects defined on the system, allow you to choose which ones to pull drivers for, talk to the Uniprint server to pull queue names, allow which of those you want, and relate one to the other to build the package (pull queue, pull ppd, know what to do with them without me scripting copy commands).  Just my thoughts on actually having a real package maker tool for the Mac.