Friday, March 9, 2012

Preventing Microsoft Office 2007 and 2010 first run annoyances

Most of us who have worked with Microsoft Office 2007 and 2010 deployments have probably come across the task of preventing the first run window prompts that users have to deal with when they launch an Office install for the first time.  This usually isn’t that big of a deal in the conventional 1 physical desktop to 1 user environment but when dealing with virtual desktops and more specifically, Citrix XenDesktop, these annoying prompts will continuously prompt the user whenever the master image is updated and the users’ desktops are refreshed.  I’ve previously blogged about how to remove these prompts via the Office Customization Tool (OCT) but if it’s too late for you to create a customization file, you still have the option of using Active Directory Group Policy to disable them.  I’m sure a quick search will reveal numerous results on how to do this but I’m going to write this post anyways so I can quickly reference to it in the future.

Note that the following customizations are what I usually set and depending on your requirements, you may want to further customize the settings.

Office 2007

Prior to creating the policy, you’ll need to first download the ADM files here: http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/confirmation.aspx?id=22666

Once you’ve gotten the ADM files added, proceed with editing the policy with the following settings:

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office 2007 system/Privacy/Trust Center –> Automatically receive small updates to improve reliability –> Disabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office 2007 system/Privacy/Trust Center –> Disable Opt-in Wizard on first run –> Enabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office 2007 system/Privacy/Trust Center –> Enable Customer Experience Improvement Program –> Disabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office Outlook 2007/Tools | Account Settings/Exchange/Cached Exchange Mode –> Cached Exchange Mode (File | Cached Exchange Mode) –> Disabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office Outlook 2007/Tools | Account Settings/Exchange/Cached Exchange Mode –> Use Cached Exchange Mode for new and existing Outlook profiles –> Disabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office Outlook 2007/Tools | Account Settings/RSS Feeds –> Synchronize Outlook RSS Feeds with Common Feed List –> Disabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office Outlook 2007/Tools | Account Settings/RSS Feeds –> Turn off RSS feature –> Enabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office Outlook 2007/Tools | Options…/Preferences/Search Options –> Prevent installation prompts when Windows Desktop Search component is not present –> Enabled

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Note that the above settings configured above includes disabling Exchange Mailbox Caching because I’ve configured these GPOs for Citrix XenDesktop virtual desktops.

Office 2010

Prior to creating the policy, you’ll need to first download the ADM files here: http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=18968

Once you’ve gotten the ADM files added, proceed with editing the policy with the following settings:

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Office 2010/Miscellaneous –> Suppress recommended settings dialog –> Enabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Outlook 2010/Account Settings/Exchange/Cached Exchange Mode –> Cached Exchange Mode (File | Cached Exchange Mode) –> Disabled

User Configuration –> Policies –> Administrative Templates –> Microsoft Outlook 2010/Account Settings/Exchange/Cached Exchange Mode –> Use Cached Exchange Mode for new and existing Outlook Profiles –> Disabled

image

Note that the above settings configured above includes disabling Exchange Mailbox Caching because I’ve configured these GPOs for Citrix XenDesktop virtual desktops.

5 comments:

Saltwell said...

You don't say where we should put the policy templates after downloading them, or whether the GPO editor will see them automatically if they're in the right place; nor does the documentation with the download seem to describe this. All this is far from clear in Server 2008...

Saltwell said...

By the way, I found the "Capcha" that I had to get past before making a comment almost impossible to decipher

Terence Luk said...

Saltwell,

The following are the response I have for your comments:

1. "You don't say where we should put the policy templates after downloading them, or whether the GPO editor will see them automatically if they're in the right place; nor does the documentation with the download seem to describe this. All this is far from clear in Server 2008..."

I apologize for not including instructions on how to add the ADM files in as templates but this blog post was written for administrators who have a basic understanding of administering Active Directory GPOs. I'm sorry I did not cater it to audiences such as yourself. My suggestion to you is to try putting the following into the Google search engine: "How to add ADM templates".

2. "By the way, I found the "Capcha" that I had to get past before making a comment almost impossible to decipher"

You might want to submit your complain to Blogger and not me since I don't have control on how commenting process is handled.

Saltwell said...

Thanks but I've already tried searches and it seems there is nothing decipherable by the novice admin on installation of ADMX templates, which seem to be different in many respects from the earlier ADM ones

Anonymous said...

It is easy to find: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc179081(v=office.14).aspx#Load_O14_templates