How do I modify the forms (e.g. Show-InstallationWelcome, Show-InstallationProgress, etc)

Topics: Archive - General
Jun 23, 2014 at 7:58 PM
Personally I see nothing wrong with the appearance of the forms in their current iteration; however, my customer/ employer has expressed an interest in making a seamless transition from AutoIt based wrapper scripts to the PS App Deployment Toolkit. Much of the logic used in our AutoIt scripts are present in the PS App Deployment Toolkit which should simplify the transition in terms of script logic. Nevertheless, in the interest of consistency particularly in the area of user experience it will be necessary for us to slightly modify the default appearance of the PS App Deployment Toolkit forms. I can provide examples for comparison if necessary, a shove in the right direction would be appreciated. The forms that are wanting to modify are the Welcome Prompt and Installation Progress respectively.

Best Regards,

Yves
Coordinator
Jun 23, 2014 at 8:49 PM
Hi Yves,

We have developed the forms to be customizable as far as changing the banner and the text. I would strongly advise against changing the forms as there is a high risk of breaking something and you will need to merge your changes in to every new release of the toolkit. We do our best to support the toolkit in our spare time, but ultimately we can't support you if you run in to problems after modifying the main code. There is safety in numbers and the current code is used globally on hundreds of thousands of clients.

That said, here's a quick summary:

The Installation Welcome prompt uses Windows forms with a Flow Layout panel to dynamically adjust the size of the form depending on the objects contained within it.

The Installation Progress uses Windows Presentation Framework as it needed to be multithreaded - not an easy task.

Outside of making simple changes like font type, you're going to need advanced PowerShell/UI skills to take on any major re-work.

Sean
Jun 24, 2014 at 3:50 AM
Edited Jun 24, 2014 at 4:07 AM
Sean,

Thanks for the response. It had occurred to me that there would be no easy way to make modifications to the UI without breaking it (only after having broken it once or twice), can you honestly blame me for trying? I can certainly appreciate why you would strongly urge against making changes particularly when considering the complexities that are involved. Having said that, however, I would venture to say that the requirements of every corporation may have some similarities as it relates to software deployment yet may have unique approaches a request to modify the forms was inevitable. Moreover, the changes that I am proposing are quite simplistic and unassuming in my opinion. At the very least, what I had hoped for was the ability to include the modified forms as function calls in the "AppDeployToolkitExtensions.ps1" which I estimate would satisfy the need for segregation from the "AppDeployToolkitMain.ps1" I've included some screen shots of our AutoIt based wrapper forms; for the sake of argument humor me, have a peek, and if you still insist that the cost outweigh the benefits of customizing the PS App Deployment Toolkit then I will regress and inform my customer that they may have to relax some standards in the interim.

Link to form examples below.
https://onedrive.live.com/?cid=5FCC1784191B8F1D&id=5FCC1784191B8F1D%211180

Best Regards,

Yves
Coordinator
Jun 24, 2014 at 10:01 PM
Hi Yves,

If you're going to undertake changes to the UI, then your approach of using the toolkit extensions is the right one. I've looked at the screenshots and your UI isn't a million miles away as it is. Your biggest challenge is going to be modifying the installation welcome prompt while retaining the logic with the closing of programs and the functionality of the parameters in the function. It's more than just a UI change but it's definitely doable. I can see the merits in your UI but I would still be loathe to undertake the modification work if were you. It's your call to make whether the costs outweigh the benefits :-)

Regards,
Sean
Jun 24, 2014 at 10:40 PM
Sean,

Thank you for obliging me. If I may ask, what tool are you using to generate the forms? I ask because I saw some XAML code in the PS App Deployment Toolkit that I hadn't seen in my attempts to build forms using Sapiens Powershell Studio. One more thing, would mind answering these posts when you can spare a moment? I Thank you kindly sir.

https://psappdeploytoolkit.codeplex.com/discussions/549132
https://psappdeploytoolkit.codeplex.com/discussions/549292

Best Regards,

Yves
Coordinator
Jun 25, 2014 at 12:28 PM
Hi Yves,

For the windows forms I used Primal Forms Community Edition as a starting point but obviously needed to build on to that.

The XAML is hand-made with exception of the eclipse graphic was was plucked from the web somewhere.

Will try to get to the other posts soon.

Cheers,
Sean