How to use command-line switches for Office XP setup

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Article ID: 283686 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q283686
For a Microsoft Office 2000 version of this article, see 202946.
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The Office Setup program accepts a number of optional command-line switches that you can use to control how the Setup program operates. This article lists the switches and describes the functionality of each switch.


The following command-line options are used with the Setup command line. By using command-line options, an administrator can control how programs that use the Windows Installer package (MSI files) and the transforms (MST files) install software applications.

If you plan to use several Setup properties, type them in the Setup settings file (Setup.ini) to reduce the possibility of encountering a command-line length limitation.

Important Notes
  • Switches are not case sensitive, for example, /A is the same as /a.
  • Except where specifically noted, you can only use these switches when you perform an initial installation of Microsoft Office XP.
  • If you use a Setup command-line option that is also used in the Setup settings file (Setup.ini) or in the transform (MST file), the command-line option usually takes precedence.
  • The Windows Installer package (MSI file) should be in the same folder as Setup.exe. In the case of Microsoft Office, the Windows Installer package must be in the root folder of the administrative installation point.
  • When you use multiple switches, separate them with a blank space. For example, use the following command line to use a specific installer file and write the results to a log file:
    Setup /i ProPlus.msi /l* c:\logfile.txt
  • When Setup.exe ends, it sets %errorlevel% if an error was encountered. If the user cancels Setup, the errorlevel returned is zero (0), indicating no error occurred.
The following table lists the Setup switches:

 Switch              Description                 
 /?                  Displays a dialog box pointing to the Office 
                     Resource Kit at
                     NOTE: The link to the Office XP Office Resource Kit is
 /a <msifile>        Setup performs an administrative installation using 
                     the specified Microsoft Installer (.msi) file to 
                     create an administrative install point. The .msi file
                     must be in the same folder as Setup.exe.

                     NOTE: To create an administrative installation, 
                     you must use an Enterprise edition of Office. 

                     Example: /a ProPlus.msi
 /autorun            Only used in the Autorun.inf file. This switch's  
                     purpose is to indicate that Setup is being run by
                     Windows automatically after you insert the Office CD  
                     in the CD-ROM drive.

                     CAUTION: Do not modify the Autorun.inf file. The 
                     information it contains is necessary for the correct
                     operation of Setup.
/f<options>          Setup repairs the Office installation. The .msi file 
   <package path>    specified must be .msi file used to install Office 
                     originally. The .msi file must be in the same folder 
                     as Setup.exe.

                     The Detect and Repair command (Help menu) in Office
                     programs performs the same function as using the 
                     following options, /focums.

                     If you run Setup and click Reinstall, Setup performs
                     the same function as using the following options, 
                     /fecum. Valid options are:

                     a  Force all files to be reinstalled regardless of 
                        checksum or version.

                     c  Reinstall a file if it is missing or damaged (the 
                        stored checksum does not match the computed 
                        checksum value).

                     d  Reinstall a file if it is missing, or a different 
                        version is present.

                     e  Reinstall a file if it is missing, or an equal or 
                        older version is present.

                     m  Rewrite all required local machine registry values.

                     o  Reinstall a file if it is missing, or an older 
                        version is present.

                     p  Reinstall a file only if it is missing.

                     s  Reinstall all shortcuts, overwriting any existing 

                     u  Rewrite all required user registry values.

                     v  Run from the source package and re-cache the local 

                     Example: /focums ProPlus.msi
 /i <msifile>        Setup installs programs by using the Windows
                     Installer package (MSI file) specified. The MSI 
                     file must be in the same folder as Setup.exe. If 
                     the file is not in the same folder as Setup.exe,
                     it should be moved there, or a path to the file 
                     must be included. When running Setup.exe, /i is 
                     the default behavior, using the msifile specified
                     in Setup.ini.

                     Examples: /i ProPlus.msi
                               /i "subfolder1\ProPlus.msi"
 /j<option>          Creates an icon representing an Office program or
   <package path>    feature that is configured during Setup to install 
                     the first time you use it ("installed on first use").
                     Valid options are:

                     u  Current user logged on to Windows.
                     m   All users using the computer.

                     NOTE: If you specify the /j option in the Setup 
                     command line, the only additional command-line
                     options you can use, in addition to the /t sub 
                     option, are /q, /l, and /settings. All other 
                     command-line options are ignored.

                     NOTE: In the case of Microsoft Office, use the /j
                     option only when running Setup from an
                     administrative installation point.

                     Example: /ju c:\ProPlus.msi
                     Example: /ju c:\ProPlus.msi /t install.mst
 /l<option>          Logs switches for Msiexec.exe (the Windows Installer)
   <logfile>         and specifies the path to the log file. The flags 
                     indicate which information to log. Valid options are:

                     a  Startup of actions            

                     c  Initial UI parameters

                     e  All error messages

                     i  Status messages

                     m  Out of memory
                     o  Disk space errors
                     r  Action-specific records

                     p  Terminal properties

                     u  User requests

                     v  Verbose output

                     w  Nonfatal warnings

                     +  Append to existing file

                     *  Log all information except verbose output. You can 
                        use the v switch along with the asterisk, /l*v.

                     !  Writes each line to the log file. The default 
                        behavior is to cache 20 lines of log file text 
                        into memory and then write 20 lines to the log 
                        file at once. This is done to improve performance.

                     NOTE: For more information, refer to the Knowledge
                     Base article Q297107: You receive the "Installer
                     terminated prematurely" error message when you use
                     the ! logging option to install Office XP.
                     Example: /l* c:\logfile.txt

                     This example creates the following verbose log 
                     files, using all logging mode options:

                     Setup.exe log file:   c:\logfile.txt	
                     OSP log file:         c:\logfile_Task(0001).txt
                     Office log file:      c:\logfile_Task(0002).txt
/m <.mif file>      Specifies an SMS .mif file name of 8 characters or less.
                    NOTE: Do not include the .mif extension with the 
                    filename; otherwise, the command line will return the 
                    following error: "Invalid command line".
 /noreboot        Setup.exe will not restart the computer or display 
                    the restart dialog box at the end of an installation. 
                    It also passes REBOOT=ReallySuppress to every MSI
                    in the list of chained installs, except for the 
                    last entry in the chain. Conversely, if you
                    pass REBOOT=ReallySuppress as a property, it sets
                    /noreboot and passes REBOOT=ReallySuppress to each
                    MSI listed in the list of chained installs, except
                    for the last entry in the chain.

                   NOTE: Office XP Japanese Edition includes IME. 
                   IME needs to restart the computer. To avoid to display 
                   the restart dialog box at the end of an installation, 
                   you have to use REBOOT=ReallySuppress with *.MSI file to 
 /nosp              Override system pack detection logic and don't
                    call the System Files Update (OSP.msi). It is 
                    possible for an install process to fail
                    if the OSP.msi is not installed when needed. 
                    Caution should be used when including this option.
 <PROPERTY>=<value>  Specifies a value for any of the Installer properties 
                     (see the Office Resource Kit for a complete list 
                     of valid properties). If the property value contains 
                     spaces, enclose the string in quotation marks 
                     ("<value>"). You can specify more than one property 
                     and value pair on the command line separated by 

                     Only public properties are set on the Setup 
                     command line. Public properties are all upper-
                     case; you do not have to type the property 
                     names in upper-case on the command line. Private
                     properties--properties consisting of mixed-case
                     letters--are not recognized by Setup on the 
                     command line. You can set private properties in 
                     the Modify Setup Properties page of the wizard.

                     Example: TRANSFORMS="c:\acct dept" 
 /q<option>          Selects the user-interface level. Valid options are

                     n  None - No user interface is displayed.

                     b  Basic - Only simple progress indicators and errors 
                        are displayed.

                     r  Reduced - No user information is collected, and 
                        no progress indicators are displayed.
                     f  Full - All indicators with a modal dialog box at 
                        the end of Setup.

                     +  Adds a completion message to the /n or /b 
                        option. The message is displayed only if Setup
                        does not need to restart after the installation
                        is complete.
                     -  Added after the b, f, n, or r option to 
                        suppress all modal dialogs.

                     NOTE: You can only use this switch with an 
                     Enterprise edition of Office. 

                     Example: /qb-
 /settings file      Specifies a Setup settings file for customizing
                     Setup actions. If the file is not located in the
                     same folder as Setup.exe, include the path; 
                     however, it is recommended the file be in the same 
                     directory as Setup.exe. Specifying a 
                     settings file forces Setup to use the referenced
                     file in place of Setup.ini.

                     /settings MyApp.ini

 /SPForce            Install the System Files Update (OSP.msi) even 
                     if the auto-detection process determines it is 
                     not required. Not supported on Windows 2000 and
                     Windows Millennium, where the OSP.msi cannot be
 /SPOnly             Install only the System Files Update (OSP.msi).
                     Do not install Office. This option only applies
                     to installations of Microsoft Office on Windows
                     98 or Windows NT 4. This switch is useful for
                     pre-deployment of the System Files Update in
                     preparation for Office deployment.
  /t <transform>     Specifies the name of the transform (.mst) file. The 
                     /i switch is required with the /t switch. When using 
                     the /j switch with a transforms file, the /t switch 
                     must be used; otherwise the TRANSFORMS property should 
                     be used.

                     Example: /t acct.mst /i off9.msi
 /wait               Wait for the installation to complete before quitting 
                     the Setup program.
 /webinstall url     Set the URL path to install the program from. The
                     URL provided is considered the root of an Office
                     administrative installation point. If Setup.exe 
                     determines it was started from Internet Explorer, 
                     Setup.exe queries the system to determine what HTTP
                     path it was started from, and this switch is not 

                     NOTE: To create an administrative installation, 
                     you must use an Enterprise edition of Office. 
                     IMPORTANT: Installing other applications from an
                     HTTP, HTTPS, or FTP source location is not supported.

                     NOTE: Transforms are not supported from a URL 
                     source and must reside either on a network file 
                     share or as a stream in the msifile.

 /x <msifile>        Setup uninstalls Office. The .msi file specified 
                     must be the same .msi file used to install Office 
                     originally. The .msi file must be in the same folder 
                     as Setup.exe.

                     Example: /x ProPlus.msi
If you are using a long file name with embedded spaces in the path, see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
139427 Using long filenames with the Run command


For more information about command-line switches that are used with the Windows Installer, see the Msi.chm file. You can obtain the Msi.chm file by downloading the Windows Installer SDK samples, tools, and documentation from the following Microsoft Web site:


Article ID: 283686 - Last Review: December 4, 2007 - Revision: 3.6
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