MAKEMSI quickly and reliably creates MSI files in a non-programmatic way
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Have your say! Join the MAKEMSI discussion list or view archive! Suggest improvements. No question too simple or too complex.
\->Tips and Tricks->Search MSIs

Search MSIs

Sometimes you'd like to search a large number of MSIs for something.

I have used the following in a batch file to search through the Windows Installer cache directory ("c:\windows\Installer" - a hidden directory):

del c:\tmp\Props.txt >nul 2>&1
for %%f in (*.msi) do cscript.exe //NoLogo "c:\Program Files\MAKEMSI\MmDocumentProperties.VBS" %%f >> c:\tmp\Props.txt
start notepad.exe c:\tmp\Props.txt

The above used the VBSCRIPT installed by MAKEMSI for the "Display a file's Properties" option. It allows me to quickly identify the cached MSI for a particular product (without having to know GUIDs etc).

If you wanted to do the above over a whole directory tree or drive then you use a "sweep" program like "sweep32.exe".

Agent Ransack

The above demonstrated a simple no tools option, unfortunately the usefulness of this is limited. The crippled Windows Explorer search doesn't work for MSIs and the "find.exe" utility also fails.

If you simply wish to know if an MSI contains some specific text then you can use a free tool such as "Agent Ransack" to search *.MSI for the text you specify.


Microsoft awarded me an MVP (Most Valuable Professional award) in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 & 2009 for the Windows SDK (Windows Installer) area.Please email me any feedback, additional information or corrections.
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Sunday February 28 2016 at 3:45pm
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Microsoft awarded me an MVP (Most Valuable Professional award) in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 & 2009 for the Windows SDK (Windows Installer) area.