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  • Silent Installation of Vectorworks 2023


    Tim Ardoin

    NOTE: This article is intended for IT professionals with an understanding of the command line/terminal interface. 

    This article is not intended for all users and is not a required procedure for installing Vectorworks in a standard work environment. Do not use these steps unless you are specifically attempting to initiate a silent install of Vectorworks in a network environment or are specifically instructed to do so by Vectorworks Technical Support.

     

    The Vectorworks installer provides a command line interface for driving a silent installation from the command line.

     

    When doing a silent installation, there are five required arguments:

     

      --mode unattended

            This tells the installer to not wait for input.
      --unattendedmodeui none

            This tells the installer to not show any graphical interface.
      --Serial <serial number>

            This provides the serial number to the installer. Example --Serial EJXUSN-XXXXXX-XXXXXX-XXXXXX

      --installdir <path to install>

            This provides the path to install to the installer. Example: --installdir "C:\Program Files\Vectorworks 2023"

      --LDFChoice <licenseID | ldf_local_file>

            This tells the installer how to retrieve the License Description File.

            --LDFChoice licenseID: This tells the installer to automatically download it during installation.

            --LDFChoice ldf_local_file: This tells the installer you will provide the LDF file.

            If you use ldf_local_file, you must also specify an additional argument:

                --ldf <path>

                      This specifies the path and filename to a pre-downloaded LDF file.

     

     

    In addition, on MacOS, the following argument is usually desired:

      --sysUsername <username>

            This tells the installer the username of the user who will be the "owner" of the files Vectorworks installs.

            Without this argument, the superuser "root" will be the owner of these files. Typically, you want a named user to own these files.

     

    These arguments are case sensitive and are preceded by a double dash (--).

     

    Windows:

    1) Using 7-zip, extract the large file called "dist" that's found next to the installer .exe.

    2) The executable file you need to start the silent installer will be in this location:

    dist~\resources\installer\

    named: "Install Vectorworks2023.exe".

     

    Open a command prompt window as an administrator, navigate to this folder, and use the following command:

     

    START /W "" "Install Vectorworks2023.exe" --unattendedmodeui none --mode unattended --Serial EJXUSN-XXXXXX-XXXXXX-XXXXXX --installdir <install directory goes here, usually "C:\Program Files\Vectorworks 2023"> --LDFChoice licenseID

     

    When the installation is finished, control will return to the command line. You can verify if it is complete by examining the file InstallerLog.txt to see if it says "Installation completed" at the end of the log. This file can be found in the installation directory.

     

    MacOS:

    You will need to first launch the installer .dmg file, which will open a volume called “Vectorworks 2023 Installer” in your finder. 

    From the Mac Terminal, type in the following command:

     

    sudo /Volumes/Vectorworks\ 2023\ Installer/Vectorworks\ 2023\ Installer.app/Contents/Resources/installer/Install\ Vectorworks2023.app/Contents/MacOS/installbuilder.sh --unattendedmodeui none --mode unattended --Serial EJMUSN-XXXXXX-XXXXXX-XXXXXX --installdir <install directory goes here, usually "/Applications/Vectorworks 2023"> --sysUsername <the system user for which Vectorworks is being installed> --LDFChoice licenseID

     

    When the installation is finished, control will return to the command line. You can verify if it is complete by examining the file InstallerLog.txt to see if it says "Installation completed" at the end of the log. This file can be found in the installation directory.

     

     

    Note:  When providing specific argument values, do not include the “<” or “>” characters.



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    User Feedback


    When trying this with a G-Series serial, setup fails to find license information and suggests checking the LDF file.
    What is this file, where do I find / download it, and how are we supposed to know this? 

    Link to comment

    Figured it out. Didn't see the new serial.
    The question of how we are supposed to know this, still stands - we did not get any notification, and the install documentation doesn't touch this either. 

    Link to comment

    Another addition: the command line in your article is missing this parameter: --sysUsername userName
    It's supposed to assign the serial to the logged in user, so they shall don't get the error that the serial is missing and to please provide one.
    But it doesn't work.
    This is turning into a perfect advertisement for the competition.

    Link to comment
    • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

    Sorry for the delayed response. It looks like you got it figured out, but I had a few questions and comments to improve this article:

     

    1) What platform are you installing on? Generally sysUsername is a Mac parameter, because of the requirement that the installer launch as an admin and thus, without it, items will be installed owned by root, and various items installed to root's user folder. But if you're on Mac, sysUsername was up there already, unless I'm missing something.

     

    2) There was a bug that we just discovered causing installers to not install the serial number to the global location on Series G. Vectorworks looks in this location on launch for a serial if it doesn't find license info in the user location. Multi-user series G installations should have the serial in plists in /Library/Preferences/ on Mac and in HKLM on Win but as I mentioned this wasn't working correctly and possibly factored into your poor experience. We're testing a fix (for US) now.

     

    3) I will add some information about the LDF. Usually, this should just download as a consequence of installing and running VW and it's supposed to generally be transparent to end users. You can download these as a file via a link next to the link used to download the VW installers in the user portal.

     

    4) What's your current status? Do you need additional help installing? Did you contact Tech Support? I just want to make sure someone appropriate is helping you out (besides what I can do here).

     

     


     

    Link to comment

    1) Windows. Per the official PDF doc "SysUsername" is also a parameter for Windows installations.
    https://cw-downloads.eu/vectorworks/support/anleitungen/VW_Silent_Installation.pdf

    2) That's good news, but I think we'll stick to our reg fix, since it also removes the pesky need to sign in with a licensed VWX account. 🙂

    3) Thanks, I figured that one out by clicking through the customer portal. Would generally appreciate a "admin heads-up" in the future, maybe via link to an article in the announcement newsletter.

    4) Our workaround seems to work great, so far only one user had to import the .reg manually (they repeatedly got the "please enter a serial" dialogue).

    Link to comment
    On 10/24/2022 at 4:05 PM, Tim Ardoin said:

    Sorry for the delayed response. It looks like you got it figured out, but I had a few questions and comments to improve this article:

     

    1) What platform are you installing on? Generally sysUsername is a Mac parameter, because of the requirement that the installer launch as an admin and thus, without it, items will be installed owned by root, and various items installed to root's user folder. But if you're on Mac, sysUsername was up there already, unless I'm missing something.

     

    2) There was a bug that we just discovered causing installers to not install the serial number to the global location on Series G. Vectorworks looks in this location on launch for a serial if it doesn't find license info in the user location. Multi-user series G installations should have the serial in plists in /Library/Preferences/ on Mac and in HKLM on Win but as I mentioned this wasn't working correctly and possibly factored into your poor experience. We're testing a fix (for US) now.

     

    3) I will add some information about the LDF. Usually, this should just download as a consequence of installing and running VW and it's supposed to generally be transparent to end users. You can download these as a file via a link next to the link used to download the VW installers in the user portal.

     

    4) What's your current status? Do you need additional help installing? Did you contact Tech Support? I just want to make sure someone appropriate is helping you out (besides what I can do here).

     

     


     

    @Tim Ardoin I am experiencing the issue described 2)  I have emailed tech support several times over the past 2 weeks trying to find a solution.  So far no response from tech support to my last 3 emails over a week ago.   Series G trying to do install on several mac laptops for student use.  If it is not the serial staying then I am getting it can't find my license server yet it is pingable and the port is available from the device.  Have it working (somehow) on 1 device so server is responding and working.   Have tried 2023 and 2023 sp1.

    Link to comment
    On 10/28/2022 at 7:40 PM, RMPSL said:

    2) That's good news, but I think we'll stick to our reg fix, since it also removes the pesky need to sign in with a licensed VWX account. 🙂

     

    Do you mind sharing this reg fix? I've tried to find a solution for a while. Is it machine-wide? Or specific to the user?

    Link to comment

    I also have the problem that when I start Vectorworks, I am asked for the serial number, even though it was provided during installation.

    The same applies to the LDF file.

     

    I'm using Vectorworks 2023 SP1. How can I solve this problem?

    Link to comment

    I had the same problem when installing Vectorworks 2023 through SCCM. To solve it, start regedit with the user account that did the installation. Navigate to this path (which should contain the serial number) and export it to a .reg file: "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Nemetschek\Vectorworks 28\Registration"

     

    Edit the .reg file and replace HKEY_CURRENT_USER with HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE. I also changed the 'First Time Run' value from 0 to 1. Import the key and it should work for other users.

     

     

    Link to comment

    Hi, i am trying to install VW 2023 evaluation and when i reach the license agreement screen i can't find where to approve accepting th license agreement
     

    Link to comment
    On 10/25/2022 at 6:05 AM, Tim Ardoin said:

    2) There was a bug that we just discovered causing installers to not install the serial number to the global location on Series G. Vectorworks looks in this location on launch for a serial if it doesn't find license info in the user location. Multi-user series G installations should have the serial in plists in /Library/Preferences/ on Mac and in HKLM on Win but as I mentioned this wasn't working correctly and possibly factored into your poor experience. We're testing a fix (for US) now.

    Hi Tim,

     

    Any updates here? Has the fix in the US worked? Do we have an ETA on when it might be available globally?

    Link to comment

    Vectorworks 2023 asks for the LDF file at the first start even though I provided the LDF file during the silent installation.

    How can I fix this problem?

    Link to comment


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