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Killing and starting explorer.exe


I want to use PDQ deploy to upgrade MS Office on some targeted computers. I created my package correctly in PDQ Deploy. Before the installation kicks off I kill all Office apps. Since it's a big program and it takes a while to install, I thought about killing explorer.exe. Since the installation happens silently in the background, I wanted to make sure that the end user doesn't open any word or excel files while the new version is installing. I can kill it fine but I can't start it back once the installation is complete.

What I did is I added a command step after the main Office installation step. The command itself is %SYSTEMROOT%\explorer.exe but once it gets there, the step hangs out and finishes with a timeout error after several minutes. I tried changing the Run As option to the logged on user but it doesn't change anything.

So is there any way to do this? Or any way to lock the computer while the installation is running?






1 comment
Date Votes
  • Hi Patrick,

    the problem is that explorer runs in user context and not as system or a service. By default, it is not possible to run explorer as a different user.

    There is a workarround but you would still need the users credentials. I think that the better way would be to schedule the installation over the night while forcing a user logout or a reboot. Send a mail to the users with the request to log off after work and leave the computers running. Optionally, you can utilize WOL.(I admit, its not allways working, but its goot when it does.)