18 November, 2010
This post is part of a series covering how to configure and run AutoSPInstaller, a set of scripts that can be used to automatically install SharePoint.
AutoSPInstaller is a CodePlex project started by Brian Lalancette. The aim of the project is to provide a set of unified scripts to install SharePoint by following best practices.
I have been using automated installations of SharePoint farms for years now and am a big fan of AutoSPInstaller, the open source script library from CodePlex. This blog post started out as a quick guide on how to run the script. It has now evolved into a sectioned step-by-step guide. This is due to the large amount of support request that I get on the matter. I hope you find the information helpful.
Scripted installations creates repeatability and consistency and is very useful when creating separate environments for test, QA and production. You must be sure that the setup in your environment that is used for load testing and acceptance testing is as identical as possible.
The scripts also help when using horizontal farm scaling, the technique used to add a new server node to a farm that spreads the workload over the machines. If we use virtualized environments, we can start up a Windows Server instance, run the scripts and have the new farm node up in less than an hour and be sure that the new server is set up correctly.
When using the standard, GUI-based installer, we get automatic naming of databases, All system databases are named using a random GUID string. The scripted installation will control the database names and make it easier to locate the correct database for your installation.
Last, but not least, this will save you an enormous amount of time. In my cases, I will install a test farm with 1 WFE, 1 Admin server, a QA environment with 2 WFE and 2 Admin servers and a production environment with 2 WFE and 2 Admin servers. Now, I can prepare the base media and three versions of the AutoSPInstaller scripts, one for each farm configuration, and run the installations of all servers simultaneously.
The scripts will (in short) perform the following tasks:
New in v3
New in v2.5
The ability to use a single AutoSPInstallerInput.XML file for your entire farm, and simply include the names of servers (comma-delimited) on which you want particular service instances or service applications installed.
<ManagedMetadataServiceApp Provision="SPAPPSRV1, SPAPPSRV2"
New in v2