A while back I discovered a killer package manager for Windows called Chocolatey. Linux has been on top of the game for years in regards to the ease of installing and maintaining programs - one such example is Snap.
With Chocolatey, you can easily install a whole host of Windows-based applications without ever having to manually download each program from various sites or network drive locations.
With a little creativity, you can even write a batch script where it will automatically install Chocolatey, install all the programs you'd like, and then uninstall chocolatey (if you so wish) automatically.
Here's an example of a batch script you could use for this purpose (like on a new PC install). While you are at it, you can also add other useful things to the batch:
:: as an example - this will set the power configuration to high performance
powercfg /change standby-timeout-ac 0
powercfg /change monitor-timeout-ac 0
powercfg /change hibernate-timeout-ac 0
powercfg /change monitor-timeout-dc 0
powercfg /change standby-timeout-dc 120
powercfg /change hibernate-timeout-dc 240
:: this automatically installs chocolatey
@"%SystemRoot%\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\powershell.exe" -NoProfile -InputFormat None -ExecutionPolicy Bypass -Command "iex ((New-Object System.Net.WebClient).DownloadString('https://chocolatey.org/install.ps1'))" && SET "PATH=%PATH%;%ALLUSERSPROFILE%\chocolatey\bin"
:: if there's any error, this tells the batch to keep running - going on to the next part of the script
On Error Resume Next
:: this command installs the different packages/programs. notice the y and the accept license switches. there are thousands of packages available. i have included just a few here as examples.
choco install office365business -y --acceptlicense
choco install adobereader -y --acceptlicense
choco install googlechrome -y --acceptlicense
choco install firefox -y --acceptlicense
:: if you are in a domain setting - might as well force a group policy update while you are at it
:: if you so choose, you can also add outside vbscripts from other locations. replace the text in red with your appropriate settings
cscript "\\server\server_location\nameofvbsscript.vbs" //e:vbscript
:: you can set up a pause if you'd like
:: you can even uninstall chocolatey once everything is completed installed
choco uninstall chocolatey
:: nothing wrong with a restart after it's all done
shutdown /r /f -t 10
::end of script
What's neat, is that you can keep this batch on a network drive, copy it over to the machine you are working on, and set it off. The batch takes care of everything else automatically while you are busy doing other things. For more information, check out Chocolatey here.
It's important to note that Chocolatey is Open Source (free to use for individuals AND organizations). They do have paid versions if you'd like extra functionality and support.
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