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JSI Tip 3101. How can I use Group Policy Objects to deploy SP1 for Windows 2000?

You can use Group Policy Objects (GPOs) to deploy Service Pack 1 for Windows 2000, or to deploy other software using WinInstall.

GPOs, in a Windows 2000 domain, can be used to publish programs to users and/or computers.

To install SP1 for Windows 2000:

1. Create and share a folder on a network server to hold the service pack files. Grant RX permissions for users and computers.

2. Copy the entire \i386 folder from the service pack to this folder. If you have to expand a download, use <DownloadFileName>.exe with the /x switch.

3. Download Update.msi from Microsoft and place it in the share from step 1.

4. Create or modify a GPO to publish the service pack, using the Active Directory Users and Computers snap-in. You can apply a GPO to domains, sites, and organizational units, but this example will apply a new GPO to all the Windows 2000 computers in the domain. Select the domain at the top of the tree and right click it and press Properties. The Group Policy tab will show all the GPOs that will be applied at the domain level. Create a new GPO by pressing the New button and give it a descriptive name. If you intend to use the GPO for more than installing SP1, don't use a name like SP1 Installation.

5. Select the new GPO and press the Edit button. Since the service pack is computer based, expand Computer Configuration / Software Settings / Group Policy and right-click Software installation and press New Package.

6. Enter the UNC path to the Windows Installer file (.msi) when prompted, by navigating to \\<servername>\<sharename>\update.msi. Do NOT use a local path. Select the Update.msi file and press Open.

7. When prompted, press Assigned unless you know how to modify the Advanced Published options. The package should now appear in the left hand pane, with the Auto-Install property set to Yes.

The next time you restart a Windows 2000 computer in the domain, the service pack will be installed and the computer will restart itself automatically. As a test, you can Start / Run / winver / OK to see that the service pack was installed.

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