I'm working on helping users through a non-obvious initial setup process for a product I work on, and so I'm displaying a setup progress indicator on the main screen.
There are four separate setup steps which can largely be done in any order, but at least in my mind, there's a preferred order for the sake of clarity (increased functionality available after each step instead of none until the last step).
So, I'm planning to show some sort of indicator of how far along the user is in the setup process, and which steps they've completed, plus an indicator of what else they have to do.
My question is: is it better to show only completed steps (Option B on mockup) and the 'next step' suggestion so as not to overwhelm the user with options, or should I also show all required steps and highlight my suggestion (Option A), so that if they want to do them out of order, they still see their progress?
(Also, progress bar or not?)
Edit: It's not that the install process is doing tasks in the background. These are required, manual tasks that the one setting up the application has to do, one of which is connecting it to another server, so there aren't reasonable defaults.