Deploying Customized Installers

Once the project is saved, your modified installer is ready for deployment. For example, you can simply run setup.exe. The EXE reads the setup.ini file which contains references to your transform file (MST) and any needed updates. Alternatively, you can reference the MST from the command line.

Generate a transform file

A transform (.mst) file contains your modifications and any files added to the project (.msi) file. The Wizard updates the associated transform file every time you save a project.

To create a Transform file:

  1. Choose Transform > Generate Transform.

  2. In the Save dialog, browse to the desired location.

  3. Enter the transform file name in the Filename box.

  4. Choose Save.

You can generate a copy of an open transform file and then apply it to another project. In order to apply the new transform file to another project, you must open the new project and load the transform file.


Bootstrapper installation

You can use your customized MST for bootstrapper deployments. The bootstrapper Setup.exe file uses setup.ini as its configuration file. As you customize the installer with the Wizard, the Setup.ini file automatically updates. The Setup.exe file uses Setup.ini as its configuration file. Before deployment, open Setup.ini, verify it contains all the properties you need, and edit it as necessary.

Setup.ini contains two sections:

  • [Startup]: Setup.exe first executes the Adobe flags for CmdLine. Do not place Adobe properties or MSI switches here; for example, you can use /sAll but not /qb!+ in this section.

  • [Product] Setup.exe then reads the [Product] section. There may be multiple [Product] sections depending what the EXE should invoke (other MSI’s or EXE’s). The CmdLine should only contain values supported by the item the EXE invokes. For example, when invoking an MSI (msi=AcroPro.msi), you can only use space-separated Adobe properties (flag/value pairs connected by an = sign) and MSI switches; for example, you can use /qb!+ but not /sAll in this section.

MST usage in Setup.ini

CmdLine=/sAll /sl "1031"
RequireOS=Win XP

CmdLine=TRANSFORMS="AcroPro.mst" /qb!+
1033=English (United States)
1031=German (Germany)

TRANSFORMS on the cmd line

Installer modifications created in the Customization Wizard are saved to an MST file. The MST must be referenced in the .ini file or on the command line. This example installs a customized version of Acrobat Professional, displays a basic user interface, and enables verbose logging.

Installing with an MST

msiexec /i <path\AcroPro.msi> TRANSFORMS="AcroPro.mst" /qb /L*v c:\acrobat.log

Language selection

You can use the LANG_LIST property to specify languages. Specify both the language code and the language-specific MST:

msiexec /i <path\AcroPro.msi> LANG_LIST=en_US TRANSFORMS="1033.mst"  /qb

Refer to Adobe Properties to learn more about setting the LANG_LIST property.

AIP installation

To create an administrative installation for a customized installer, use /a and TRANSFORMS. For example, the following installs Acrobat Pro with an MST file created with the Customization Wizard:

msiexec /a <path\AcroPro.msi> TRANSFORMS="AcroPro.mst"

To create an administrative installation for a major release installer and a patch, use /a and /p. For example, the following installs Acrobat:

msiexec /a  <path\AcroRdrDC<version>_lang_ID.msi> /p AcroRdrDCUpd<version>.msp


Keep the files in the same directory and cd to that directory so that you can run the commands from there.