Installing and using Bloom in network environments

The Bloom installer is primarily intended for the situation where the person installing Bloom is the sole user of Bloom on the computer. It is designed not to need administrator privileges, either to install or update. The price of this is that a normal install, done by double-clicking the installer, is only available to the user who installed it. If other users want to use Bloom on the same computer, each will have to install it, and disk space will be consumed by multiple copies. Each will also have to uninstall it when no longer needed. Moreover, depending on the choices each user makes about enabling automatic updates and performing manual ones, they may each be using a different version of Bloom.

In classroom and similar environments, it is desirable instead to install Bloom in a shared location where a known version is available to all users of the computer (typically to all users of all computers in the room). Bloom supports doing this by invoking its installer from a command line. To do this:

  • Launch a DOS box in administrator mode.
  • Run the Bloom installer with the command-line argument --allUsers. For example, if you download BloomInstaller.3.7.14.exe, you would switch to the directory where you downloaded it and issue the command “BloomInstaller.3.7.14 --allUsers” (no quotes). You will see a splash screen and a final dialog saying the installation was successful.

You can give an additional command-line argument --silent to prevent any feedback on the installation. This might be helpful if you are installing over a network and others are using the computer.

When Bloom is installed in this way, you can remove it, again in an administrator DOS box, by going to the folder where it is installed (typically Program Files(x86)\Bloom) and issuing the command “Update --uninstall”. This unfortunately leaves a couple of small files behind; it is safe to go ahead and remove the Bloom folder after you have done it.

You may well see warnings from antivirus software; it is safe to disregard these.

I do not know what a network administrator needs to do to install Bloom on all computers in a network, except that somehow the --allUsers command needs to be run in administrator mode on each computer. If someone knows an efficient way to do this, please improve this topic!