How Default Addons are Affected by the Ares 5.0 Update

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This article is used to describe the difference between how default addons are installed and handled in Ares version 5.0 versus previous versions. For step-by-step instructions on updating the Ares Client, see Updating Ares to Version 5.0: Updating the Client.

Background Behind the 5.0 Application Modernization

Current Behavior

Part of modernizing our applications has involved moving addons out of the Client's application directory, which is now protected and generally read-only for most users, and putting them in the more appropriate user documents directory (default location: C:\Users\{username}\Documents). This allows users to manage their own addons since they're stored in a location-specific to each individual Windows user. The functionality for location-specific control over addons works best for users that are not running the Client with administrator privileges. Starting in Ares 5.0, we're no longer installing addons by default to prevent addons from being installed behind the protected directory requiring admin privileges. 
 

Legacy Behavior

Prior to Ares 5.0, the 4.7 updater would install default addons to the Client's addon Directory (default location: C:\Users\admin\Documents\Ares\Addons). These addons would generally not be accessible for most staff using the Ares Client since those addons were not under their user documents folder and were located in a protected directory requiring admin privileges. 
 

Impact

For most sites, legacy behavior may have not been an issue. If you were able to use addons in the Client, they were probably copied for each user into their respective user documents folders or the addons were distributed via an addon share and installed for each individual user as they logged into the Client. However, there can be some problems when updating to Ares 5.0 if you are making use of the addons in the admin documents folder if you are either using the admin account directly or users are running the Client as administrator. After the 5.0 update, default addons in the admin documents folder may be partially uninstalled which can result in breaking existing addons, including any 3rd party addons that depend on Atlas Helpers being present.
 
To better understand the impact and expected behavior of the addons after updating to version 5.0, see the relevant scenarios and expect behaviors described below. Note: these are only relevant if you're utilizing addons previously installed under the admin documents folder. 
 

Scenarios

Installing Ares Client Per-user (without running as administrator)

Expected Behavior:

When the current user is installing the Ares 5.0 Client, it will not recognize 4.7 as a version that should be updated and will be unaware of any addons currently installed. For example, an individual user installing an application for themselves cannot update the client for the other user on that machine. This will result in side-by-side installations of both Ares 4.7 and Ares 5.0. To give the user access to the addons, they will need to be manually copied to the appropriate user-specific document folders. The Ares 4.7 instance should be unaffected. To ensure each user will have access to any previously installed addons, please see the recommended procedures below.
 
Recommended Procedure:
 
  1. Backup the existing addons under C:\Users\admin\Documents\Ares\Addons by copying them to another location (e.g., a folder on the shared drive where all users may have access to).
  2. Uninstall the Ares 4.7 Client (will uninstall for all users on the machine).
  3. Install the Ares 5.0 Client for users as needed. Users should be running the Client applications as their own account identity without escalated privileges.
  4. Restore the addons from the backup location to their respective user-specific documents folder (e.g., C:\Users\admin). 

 

Scenario: Installing Ares Client Per-Machine (without running as administrator)

Expected Behavior:

When installing Ares 5.0 for all users on the machine, the updater will recognize the Ares 4.7 installation as a previous version that should be updated. During the update, the Ares 4.7 Client will be uninstalled before installing the newer version. Since the 5.0 updater is no longer including the installation of default addons, any previously installed default addons under the admin documents folder may be partially uninstalled (the Lua files are removed, but the config files are left behind). To ensure each user will have access to any previously installed addons, please see the recommended procedures below.

Recommended Procedure:

  1. Backup the existing addons under C:\Users\admin\Documents\Ares\Addons by copying them to another location (e.g., a folder on the shared drive where all users may have access to).
  2. Install the Ares 5.0 Client as a per-machine update (this option is available in the advanced configuration section, see Updating Ares to Version 5.0: Updating the Client for details). Users should be running the Client applications on their own account identity without selecting escalated privileges when prompted.  
  3. Restore the addons from the backup location to their respective user-specific documents folder (e.g., C:\Users\admin).  
 
Additionally, it is possible to run the Ares 5.0 Client installer as an administrator (see instructions below) rather than escalating the current user when prompted. You can't directly run the installer .msi as an administrator; however, you can run an instance of cmd.exe as administrator and then run the installer .msi from there for the same effect. This is not recommended, but we're including the expected behaviors here for completeness.  
 

 

Scenario: Installing Ares Client Per-User (run as administrator)

Expected Behavior:

This method is no longer a recommended default. When the current user is installing the Ares 5.0 Client with administrative privileges, this will result in a per-user installation specifically for the admin user. Similar to a per-user install without using admin privileges, the installer will not treat this as an upgrade from Ares 4.7. As a result, the addons will be left in the admin's document folder unaffected. The addons will continue to work when running the 5.0 Client but they will only be available to the admin user themselves or to users running the Ares Client as administrator.  
 
 

Scenario: Installing Ares Client Per-Machine (run as administrator)

Expected Behavior:  

This method is no longer a recommended default. When installing Ares 5.0 for all users on the machine as an administrator, the functionality will work similarly to the per-machine install scenario if the user escalates privileges were accepted when prompted. The only difference is the user account the installer is running as but this will not affect the final result. The 4.7 Ares Client will be seen as a previous version and uninstalled as part of the upgrade, which will lead to the default addons being partially uninstalled just like in the per-machine install without admin privileges. 

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