5.3. Installer Command Line Parameters

Here you can find links with information on performing unattended / silent installations of many popular application installers. Such instructions are useful and necessary for automating these installations.

Terminology: An unattended installation is one which does not require user interaction, and a silent (or quiet) installation is one which does not display any indication of its progress. However, most people use these terms interchangeably.

The goal is to perform an unattended installation, as well as waiting for those installations to finish and suppressing any reboot they might want to perform. This is necessary for reliably installing multiple applications.


There are several systems which vendors use to create installers for their applications. To make an educated guess about how to run an installer unattended, you need to know which system was used to create it. Sometimes this will be obvious from the installer's splash screen; sometimes you can figure it out by running strings; and sometimes you will have to guess.

There are a few way to find out which switches an installer supports. First you can try running the installer with the /? switch, but this seldom works. Second you can run the linux tool "strings" over it which might tell you what system the installer uses. Most of the time you will have to guess if it is not obvious which system was used to create the installer.


Below is a list of commonly used systems and links to their documentation:

Microsoft Installer


Wise InstallMaster

Vise Installer

Inno Setup

Nullsoft Scriptable Install System

Ghost Installer