Extract the Contents of a MSI executable file

Setup executable files are of many types among which there are two famous ones, .msi and .exe files. Both the setup files are self extracting files which installs themselves when double clicked, thus it is bit difficult to see the contents of the setup files before installation.

If you also want to extract the contents of an executable file before the actual installation then you need an Extractor tool that does this.

Below are the two ways to extract a .msi file easily:

1.    Using Command Line

Even without using any tool for this purpose, you can extract the self executable MSI file as follows:

To extract files from a .msi file at the command line, type:

msiexec /a PathToMSIFile /qb TARGETDIR=DirectoryToExtractTo

For example, to extract files from f:\abc\test.msi into c:\abc_folder you would type:

msiexec /a f:\abc\test.msi /qb TARGETDIR=c:\abc_folder

The destination directory does not need to exist prior to running this command.

2.    Using a MSI Extractor

Use a specifically designed extracting tool for msi setup files called the MSI Extractor.

The tool is simple and free to use, and should not be a problem is using it. I will get back in another post with the details on extracting an .exe file.

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