Friday, March 2, 2018

SharePoint 2016: Install Prerequisites Offline Using an Arguments File


This posting consolidates notes regarding offline installation of SharePoint Server 2016 Enterprise prerequisites.  The approach used here for offline installation of the prerequisites involves using PrerequisiteInstaller.exe along with a PrerequisiteInstaller.Arguments.txt file specifying the local or network location of the prerequisite files to be installed. The prerequisite installation files are identified in the arguments file in the order in which PrerequisiteInstaller.exe attempts to actually install them. The prerequisite file URLs are those used by PrerequisiteInstaller.exe itself to download the prerequisites, not necessarily the ones provided in the TechNet references listed below.  A few of the prerequisites downloaded from these references were found to be different than the ones downloaded using the URLs provided by PrerequisiteInstaller.exe.


  1. Copy the SharePoint Server 2016 Enterprise installation media to the server's data drive, D.
  2. Download all prerequisite files, using the URLs indicated by the PrerequisiteInstaller.exe and placed them in a local folder on the server, call it:
  3. Number them in the order in which they are installed by PrerequisiteInstaller.exe:
  4. Create a new text file, naming it
  5. Add the list of switches to this file in the order in which the prerequisite installer attempts to install them:
  6. Add the appropriate file path and name to each switch, making sure that there is no space between the colon ":" and the quotation mark """ next to it:
  7. Lastly, backspace each switch so that everything is put onto one line, making sure that one space comes before each switch (except for the first switch), and then save and close the file.
  8. Copy the file to the same location as the PrerequisiteInstaller.exe.
  9. Open an elevated DOS shell, navigate to the folder containing the installation media, and then run PrerequisiteInstaller.exe.  It will automatically detect if a PrerequisiteInstaller.Arguments.txt file is the same folder.  Installation and configuration is quick and completes in less than five minutes.  There will be at least two reboots.



  • The process used for obtaining the PrerequisiteInstaller.exe URLs for prerequisite file downloads involved iteratively running PrerequisiteInstaller.exe in an offline environment, identifying where the preprequisite file failed to download by reviewing the log file, noting down the URL, downloading and installing that prerequisite, and then  rerunning PrerequisiteInstaller.exe again.  Apparently, PrerequisiteInstaller.exe stops at the first error it experiences when trying to download a prerequisite file, and only then does it provide the URL!.  After working through ten prerequisites successively, all prerequisites and their URLs were finally identified.

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