Deploying PDF-XChange Viewer

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JLogan3o13
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Deploying PDF-XChange Viewer

Post by JLogan3o13 » Tue May 05, 2015 8:46 pm

I will start with admitting I wasn't sure where to post this; if there is a better spot please direct me.

I have been struggling to make a move from Adobe Reader to PDF-XChange Viewer as an Enterprise viewer for several customers, but always run into the same problem. All of my customers use automated deployment systems; where you upload the network MSI and then push out to users all at once.

During the XP days this worked fine with just the MSI from the homepage, we installed as the user and all worked great. With Windows 7, 8 and beyond however, and increased security measures, most corporate customers now install as the System account because their users do not have administrative rights. This causes issues with customizing the application beyond the generic deployment. Assume that I want, for all users, to do the following:
  • Disable Auto Update
    Disable Search Providers
    Set the license to FREE LICENSE
    Hide Pro Features
All of these are controlled through entries in the HKCU hive, so unless I am installing as the user (again, impossible with security measures) I encounter one of two problems: either the user has to wait after launching the application while it repairs itself, or I have to force a reboot. Just curious if anyone has ever considered why these global settings would be tied to HKCU instead of HKLM, and what kind of roadmap there may be for updating the architecture of the application to support modern operating system needs.

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Will - Tracker Supp
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Re: Deploying PDF-XChange Viewer

Post by Will - Tracker Supp » Tue May 05, 2015 10:17 pm

Hi JLogan3o13,

Thanks for the post!
Just curious if anyone has ever considered why these global settings would be tied to HKCU instead of HKLM, and what kind of roadmap there may be for updating the architecture of the application to support modern operating system needs.
While this may seem like a simple thing on the surface, it's actually a difficult implementation that comes with a whole host of the complications. For example, many end users and, indeed, many corporate clients do not want the product installed for every user. Also, the issue of licensing is raised, as not all users may be licensed and may just need the free installation; this would offer no ability to differentiate licensed and free users.

The only suggestion that we can really make, is that you install for one test machine and create these registry entries, then create a start-up script to import the entries when the user first logs in.

HTH!
If posting files to this forum, you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded.
Thank you.

Best regards

Will Travaglini
Tracker Support (Europe)
Tracker Software Products Ltd.
http://www.tracker-software.com

JLogan3o13
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Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:03 pm

Re: Deploying PDF-XChange Viewer

Post by JLogan3o13 » Wed May 06, 2015 12:20 pm

Thanks for the response. I do understand the complexity of application development and having to change core components of software. Without trying to be argumentative, I would posit that if your licensing schema is tied to that single registry entry, then perhaps something more robust should be devised. There are also a number of products that handle the "install for all" or "install just for me" handshake very well.

Unfortunately, creating a startup script for every user on the domain, to then import the needed HKCU entries on login, is not reasonable for a company of any decent size. Do this for every application that suffers from similar deficiencies in architecture, and the users' login process quickly become a morass of frustration.

Perhaps future versions will allow us to deploy the MSI as-is, taking into account the needs of a modern OS (as well as the needs of corporate customers), rather than having to open your MSI and modify it directly (obviously not best practice). I just wanted to see if there was even a realization of this need on the development team, or if someone charged with the roadmap for the software had considered the changing needs of your customers, as I cannot be the only corporate citizen experiencing this frustration.

Thank you again for the response.

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Will - Tracker Supp
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Re: Deploying PDF-XChange Viewer

Post by Will - Tracker Supp » Wed May 06, 2015 7:46 pm

Hi JLogan3o13,

This is something that would be a discussion for the CEO, Devs. and the Support staff together, so I can't make any promises other than your voice has been heard.

I do personally take your point, but there is a lot to consider - I'll pass it along for further discussion.

Cheers,
If posting files to this forum, you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded.
Thank you.

Best regards

Will Travaglini
Tracker Support (Europe)
Tracker Software Products Ltd.
http://www.tracker-software.com

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