Slipstream updates when installing SharePoint Server

If you’ve never heard of slipstreaming updates in SharePoint Server, this is the process of installing updates or feature packs directly from the get-go, before running the SharePoint Product Configuration Wizard.

Let’s imagine we are building a brand new SharePoint farm (even small), and we know that a cumulative update or feature pack is already out there, released by Microsoft.
Instead of configuring the farm, then installing the updates/packs, we can slipstream them in the process, and install SharePoint with those new features.

In today’s blog post, we will do just that using SharePoint 2016!

 

Copy the SharePoint media files

In some scenarios, we would run the SharePoint setup directly from the media (CD/DVD). But to be able to slipstream the updates/packs, we need to copy the content of the media file into a location where we can interact with the folders (i.e.: network share).
For simplicity of this demo, I have copied the content (SharePoint basic with no feature pack at all) into a folder called “SP2016” in my C: drive, but again, organisations will mostly have a network share.

Notice a folder called “updates” amongst the content? We’ll get back to it later…

 

Download & Extract the updates / feature pack

Time to download the updates/packs we need.
I have downloaded the Feature Pack 2 for SharePoint 2016 into my downloads folder.

FP2

Feature Pack 2

 

We cannot simply put this file into the “updates” folder in our media content. We need to extract it first!
This is what the command will look like:

  • <update_fileName> /extract:<extract_location>

So…. Let’s do that.

ExtracttheUpdate

Extract Feature Pack 2

 

  • Accept the License Terms >> Click “Continue
AcceptTerms

Accept License Terms

 

  • Installation” complete >> Click “OK

Note:
The word installation here is misleading. We only extracted the pack, nothing has been installed yet!

InstallComplete

Extract completed

 

After extraction, we have 3 new files – We are only interested in the 2 highlighted in blue.

  • sts-x-none (patch)
  • sts-x-none.xml
extractiondone

Files extracted

 

We will copy those 2 files into the “updates” folder where we have the SharePoint media files (remember I mentioned earlier we’ll get back to this folder 🙂 )

FilesCopied

Files copied in updates folder

 

 

Install SharePoint 2016 with the Feature Pack 2

Now we are ready to install SharePoint 2016, and run the Configuration Wizard straight away if we want to!

Feature Pack 2 offers multiple enhancements, and especially one called “Shared Roles” for MinRole.
This will allow small and medium organisations to benefit from better performance when they decide to use the MinRole topology .

So… that means that when we install SharePoint 2016, we should see those new Shared Roles straight way?

Yes. If everything went smoothly when installing SharePoint, then the below is what we should see 🙂

FP2Installed

Feature Pack 2 installed!

 

Slipstreaming updates is a great way not to waste time in running the Config Wizard twice when installing a brand new Farm.




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