Allow software installations from the server only

How do I set up a security rights policy where the power user is allowed to install software from our server only? They should not be able to install software off the Net, floppy or a CDROM drive.
The security model within Windows doesn't do a spectacularly good job at making this task easy. The best approach is to use standard user rights in conjunction with Group Policy Software Installation to deploy your software. In theory, mere mortals cannot install many MSI applications, like MS Office. However, they can install many things that take the form of setup.exe. So, the best approach is to use Software Restriction Policies to restrict all software from running except those applications you want to be installed. Then, use Group Policy Software Installation to deploy the software YOU want to your users, which will install that software with elevated rights (and therefore should install fine.)
This was first published in August 2004

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