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The use case for Install-SPSolution -Local is not clear to me.

This TechNet article Deploy solution packages (SharePoint Server 2010) suggests that I can use -Local to install solutions manually 1 server at a time in the farm. Why would this be preferred to using the timer service which seems to deploy to all necessary servers automatically

Does any one have any real world usage of this command?

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The Local parameter can be used, and exists, for two reasons as you and Anders describes.

1) Execute the deployment immediatley withouth the timer service - on single server farms. Most common approach.

2) Deploy the solution on one server at a time to maintain uptime for the farm while updating/deploying. It's not as easy as it sounds. First of all you need to take one server offline at a time and execute the command. Secondly you need to make sure that the solution you are deploying/features are being activated not makes any changes to the content dbs that affect the functionality of the WFE's not having the solution. It works - but it's not a walk in a park...

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I only use Local for development environments, where i havent got multiple WFE's.

I would imagine however that you could use it if you only wanted the functionality on one farm, but im not sure this is a recommended approach for that.

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