If you are MediaSmart Server or Data Vault owner, you should be aware by now that HP have discontinued the product and ceased development. That means we won’t see any updates to the software and have to live with the annoyances of some of the bugs they have left us with. After HP announced they were discontinuing the MediaSmart Server and Data Vault, Alex contacted them and asked that they Open Source the 3.0 software so that we could address the outstanding bugs, unfortunately HP refused this.
When I was answering a forum post recently I noticed I hadn’t got round to fixing one of the bugs on my server, the missing server icon on the Remote Access page shown in the image below.
So, rather than fixing that each time I rebuild I knocked up a quick Add-In to fix it. As it’s a straightforward Add-In, I thought as well as putting it out to the community I’d run through the code as a “How to Guide” so you can create your own.
As I put this project together, I remembered another little bug that’s easy to fix. HP has a typo in one of the help files, dropping an extra ‘t’ in the target file, so settings became setttings. This problem exists on all language versions of the server (English, French, Spanish and German). So we can squish that little bug at the same time.
You can see this by opening the console, and opening the settings page. Then click on the HP icon, Notifications and then click on Help.
Your Browser will open with a “The system cannot find the file specified.” error. If you change the URL file name from “notifications_settings.htm” to “notifications_setttings.htm” the page will now load correctly.
The “patch” we will create, just uses the Add-In mechanisms built into WHS to install the files we want to fix. There won’t be any need to create any kind of content on the console itself so we don’t need to use complex systems like Visual Studio. All you will need is Wix, but to make it even easier we will use the WixEdit GUI.
So first off you will need to have downloaded and installed WixEdit and then download and unzip the project file on your PC. This has the source files we will need for the patch, and also the Add-In template we will use.
Building the Add-In
- Open WixEdit and Choose File, Open and navigate to where you unzipped the files above and open the MSSDVPostHPPatch XML file.
So now you have the file Open, there are a few things we need to do to make this “your” Add-In. First off, let’s make you the Manufacturer. You can change the name of the Add-In here as well if you want.
To make things really easy for this Add-In, I have put all the files in the correct structure. We could add each folder and file until the end, but we have a nice GUI so let’s take advantage of the import feature and save a little bit of time.
- Click on Files on the left hand menu bar and then right click on the PFiles folder (highlighted in the image below) and choose Import Folder. Now browse to the folder you extracted before and choose the Hewlett-Packard folder.
You can now expand the folder structure thats been created in your project, and you will notice we have some entries under the DE, EN, ES, and FR folders labelled notifications_settings.htm, notifications_settings.htm_1, notifications_settings.htm_2, notifications_settings.htm_3.
These are the “components” of our project as they contain the actual files we will deploy. I prefer to rename the components so I can identify them easily later on.
- Click on the component and rename the Id.
You can see the first example for the DE folder below.
So, after you have done all four entries, your structure should now look like this: -
Now we have our components and structure set, we need to just add a Feature. If you look at the top of the screen to the right of Files, you should see a Tab labeled Features.
- Right click in the left pane and choose New Feature. Type HP_Patch in the Id field and set the Level field to 1.
- Right click on the HP_Patch feature (in the left pane) and choose New, Component Ref.
We now have a blank component reference which needs pointing at one of our components.
- Click on the down arrow to the right of Id and choose the first component name on the list.
Now the Add-In is completed!
- Click File and Save.
We now need to build the Add-In file.
- Click Build, Build MSI setup package
All that’s left to do is to copy the file you saved (default location will be with the project files you unzipped) to your \\SERVERNAME\Software\Add-In folder and install as normal. But, if you didn’t want to go through the steps above then the completed project is available with our other Add-Ins.
You have now created a basic Add-In that simply copies files. Wix can be used to do many other things as part of the installer and it’s a tool I have used to create the installers for Fireplay, Php, MySql and WHS Health. Some of these installers use more advance features such as creating Web Pages but the basic principle is the same for each and by using WixEdit you have an easier way to work through the installation. For any task or install that is a file copy rather than installation via an executable or MSI you can probably automate it by using Wix.
Now we have our first potential Community Add-In, I’d like to know if this is something we can build on. There is a more elegant way to do what we have above but it’s a little more complicated and involves using Wix to modify an XML file, and if we have more things we can resolve I’ll certainly do that method. So; do you have any fixes you would like incorporated in this Patch? Are there any developers wanting to make this a community development so we can resolve issues we have on the server as HP won’t?
Let us know here, or in the forums!