In part 1 Neil laid out the challenges of managing the installation of Pro Tools software so that Macs on a network can install it automatically. In part 2 we tackled the Pro Tools installer. Now in part 3 Neil gets creative with the AIR CreativeCollection.
- A working Munki setup with Pro Tools in your repository, tested and working.
- Packages, a free tool for creating installer packages:
- A plain text editor to write/edit scripts with, I recommend TextWrangler which is free
- The AIR Creative Collection DMG from Avid (tested with version 11.1 – other versions may yield different results if Avid change things – you have been warned!)
We’ve got Pro Tools automatically installing on our Macs nicely. But what about the lovely AIR Creative Collection we get with it? It would be nice to have that as well. We know it only installs when you run the installer inside its DMG. We also know the DMG won’t import into Munki because of something Avid have done to it. Catch 22…
I took inspiration and advice from Rich Trouton and his post about another piece of software that had a similar problem.
To quote him: “Since I was only successful when installing the software from the DVD, mimic the environment that the DVD creates.”
So we will ‘wrap’ the original DMG file inside a new installer package we’ll build, and add a script to mount that DMG, running the installer within it.
Open up Packages and choose to create a Raw Package:
Give your new package a meaningful name, leave everything else as-is and click Finish:
Once the package opens, you’ll be in the Project tab. There’s no need to modify anything here, unless you have a specific reason to do so:
Now create the script that will do all the dirty work of mounting the DMG file and running the installer. Download and copy this file into TextWrangler and save the resulting file as ‘post-install.sh’ in the root of your home folder.
Make the script file executable by jumping into Terminal and running:
sudo chmod a+x ~/post-install.sh
In Packages, open the Scripts tab and drag the AIR Creative Collection DMG file into the Additional Resources box, leaving the Reference option as Absolute Path. Also set your newly created post-install.sh script as a Post-installation script. Your window should look like this when you’ve finished:
Finally, build your new package. This takes a little while as we have over 2GB of data to squeeze into it, so be patient:
This is what we want to see:
Once built, you can find your new package in the ‘build’ folder inside the project folder you created when you named your package. It would be wise to test this package to see if it installs correctly before you import it into Munki. You’ll know if you were successful if you watch the Applications folder and look for items with ‘AIR’ in the name going in.
When you know it works, or if you like throwing caution to the wind, go ahead and import it to let your Macs get their greasy paws on it:
And there you have it, Pro Tools and its extras all ready for automated installation! Go and watch your Macs do what computers are good at – boring repetitive tasks.
As an endnote, you may think that this was a lot of work, and you’re right. But consider the alternative – installing these things manually on all your machines, one… by… one… Then a week later, Avid release an update and you’re back to square one! Doesn’t seem so bad now, does it?
That’s it for now, but I hope to write about the topic of managing Pro Tools’ preferences for your users, so that they don’t have to, soon.