Extend your inventory with SCCM Active Directory Attributes

Benoit LecoursSCCM11 Comments

SCCM Active Directory System Discovery is a discovery method to bring discovered devices into your SCCM server. It’s one of the most used discovery methods for its simplicity. Many organization extends their Active directory to include custom attributes to their records. By default, SCCM brings a couple of default Active Directory attributes but it’s also possible to bring any custom attribute that you may have. The good news is that it’s quite simple to add these custom Active Directory Attributes to your SCCM Discovery methods. What is more complicated is how to fetch this data once it’s discovered. Over the years, we’ve seen much different information stored in AD Attributes. For this post, we’ll add the Description attribute from a computer account to SCCM and describe how to query this information to create collections or reports. SCCM Custom Active Directory attributes Configuration The first step is to find the name of … Read More

Refreshing a Windows 7 Computer to Windows 10 using USMT and SCCM

Benoit LecoursSCCM, WINDOWS 1066 Comments

Since SCCM 1511, you can use the new upgrade task sequence to easily upgrade a Windows 7 computer to Windows 10. But what if you want to upgrade a computer from a 32-bits operating system to Windows 10 64-bits ? You can’t use the upgrade task sequence for this specific scenario. Another reason would be that your company decided to use the wipe and reload option in your Windows 10 migration project. In those cases you will need to use USMT to capture data and settings from the users profiles before applying the new operating system. This post will describe how to upgrade a 32-bits computer to Windows 10 64-bits using USMT and SCCM. This post will be using hard-links without using a State Migration Point. Continue reading if you are not familiar with those terms, we will explain it later. Since you’re at the step of deploying Windows 10, we assume that you already … Read More

How to use SCCM Dynamic Queries in your Deployment Collections

Stephane FaubertSCCM7 Comments

In this post we will be looking at using SCCM dynamic queries to populate collections in our deployments. As a SCCM administrator, you most likely had to plan out mass deployments to all your servers or workstations or even both. How did you go ahead and populate your collections? Queries? Since the introduction of SCCM 2012, we now have a multitude of options, most notably: Direct membership Queries Include a collection Exclude a collection Chances are, if you are deploying a new software to be part of a baseline for workstations (for example), you will also add it to your task sequence. In my passed life, I must admit, I really did like queries. They can be such a powerful tool to populate your collections. I always was looking for ways to pimp the usual types of queries we use. For example, my fellow dude Benoit has given us a fabulous … Read More

SCCM Windows 10 Customization using Task Sequences

Benoit LecoursSCCM63 Comments

In this post we will describe how to customize your windows 10 image to personalize it to your company. There’s an infinite amount of customization that can be made but i’ll try to cover the more frequent one, those that are asked 95% of every Windows 10 projects I was involved in. You could also do all those modifications through group policies if you want to enforce those settings. SCCM Windows 10 Customization Package Before we begin any customization, we will create a Windows 10 Customization package that we will use in our task sequence. It will be empty to start but we will create the folders and scripts during this blog post. Open the SCCM Console Go to Software Library / Application Management / Packages Create a new package On the Package tab, enter a Name, Description, Manufacturer and Source folder (this is where all scripts will be stored) On the Program Type … Read More

Inject Software Updates in your WIM using SCCM Offline Servicing

Stephane FaubertOSD, SCCM14 Comments

Offline Servicing in SCCM is the process through which you can inject software updates in your operating system WIM files. This process can alleviate your build and capture yearly/bi-yearly WIM updates that you most likely run in your enterprise. However, as much as this process is great to shorten your gold image updates, it’s still not perfect. Why? The answer is quite simple. Even if your gold image contains products such as Microsoft Office, offline servicing will not apply Office patches even though these are downloaded to your Software Update Point. Only core Windows applications can get patched through this process. What are the type of core applications that you can apply patches to? Obviously, Windows, Internet Explorer, .Net Framework and so on and so forth. (also called CBS, for Component Based Servicing) SCCM Offline Servicing Overview Here’s what happens in the background when you start the SCCM Offline servicing process : SMS_Executive … Read More

Windows 10 Deployment | SCCM Task Sequence Upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 10

Benoit LecoursSCCM, WINDOWS 1034 Comments

In the fourth post of this blog series about Windows 10 Deployment using SCCM, we will show you how to upgrade a Windows 7 to Windows computer 10 using SCCM task sequence upgrade. The goal of an upgrade task sequence is to upgrade an existing operating system to Windows 10 without loosing any data and installed software. This post assumes that you are running SCCM 1511 or SCCM 1602 and that you completed the preparation of your environment for Windows 10. If you are running SCCM 2012 R2 SP1, the product team has release important information about SCCM task sequence upgrade that you can find in this blog post. In the past, an in-place upgrade scenario was not a reliable and popular option to deploy the latest version of Windows. With Windows 10, it’s now reliable and features an automatic rollback in case something goes wrong. This scenario can also be considered faster than the wipe and reload deployment scenarios, since … Read More

SCCM Windows 10 Deployment | Create SCCM Windows 10 Task Sequence

Benoit LecoursSCCM, WINDOWS 1011 Comments

In the second post of this blog series about Windows 10 Deployment using SCCM, we will show you how to create a SCCM Windows 10 Task Sequence and deploy it. Complete the preparation of your environment before reading this post. This task sequence will help you deploy what we call a “vanilla” Windows 10 using the default Install.wim from the Windows 10 media. This means that you’ll end up with a basic Windows 10 with the SCCM client and nothing else. You will be able to edit this task sequence later to customize it to your environment. Create SCCM Windows 10 Task Sequence Open the SCCM Console Go to Software Library \ Operating Systems \ Task Sequences Right-click Task Sequences and select Create Task Sequence On the Task Sequence wizard, select Install an existing image package On the Task Sequence Information pane, enter the desired Name, Description and Boot Image On the Install … Read More

Step-by-Step SCCM 2012 R2 SP1 CU3 Installation Guide

Benoit LecoursSCCM16 Comments

Cumulative Update 3 (CU3) for SCCM 2012 R2 SP1 and SCCM 2012 SP2 is now available. This post is a complete step-by-step SCCM 2012 R2 SP1 CU3 Installation guide. If you’re looking for a complete SCCM 2012 installation guide, see our blog series which covers it all. Installing SCCM cumulative updates is very important to your infrastructure. It fix lots of issues, which some of them are important. Microsoft recommends installing Cumulative Updates if you are affected by a resolved issues. If you are not on SCCM 2012 R2 SP1 or SCCM 2012 SP2, the latest CU is Cumulative Update 5. If you are running SCCM 1511, this Cumulative Update is not applicable to your setup. As this is a cumulative update, you don’t have to install prior CU(1-2) before installing CU3. CU3 contains all the fixes included in previous CU. Improvements/Fixes There’s no new major functionality in CU3. This update contains fixes for issues … Read More

Pull DP Upgrade Consideration in Large Environment

Jonathan LefebvreSCCM8 Comments

Many challenges come with managing and maintaining  System Center Configuration Manager in large environment. In previous posts, we covered how to limit Pull DP bandwidth and How to manage Pull DP with collections to ease management in large environment. Probably the biggest challenge with large environment,  is to keep SCCM up to date. In this post, we will provide in depth details, considerations and useful tips on Pull DP upgrade for large SCCM environment. The goal is to provide ways to prevent upgrades of SCCM to become a nightmare by taking more time than planned and/or heavy hit on the network. We will cover theses subjects : Automatic package update and distribution How to work around automatic package update and distribution Pre-requisite checker Upgrade time lapse Distribution point and PullDP upgrade ratio What happen while Distribution point/ Pull DP upgrade Note that all details and considerations are regarding major upgrade like service pack upgrades and major … Read More

How to perform a Testdbupgrade before SCCM Installation

Benoit LecoursSCCM3 Comments

Before upgrading to SCCM 1511, it’s recommended to perform a test upgrade on a copy of your production database. We briefly cover the topic in our SCCM Upgrade post but we wanted to provide a step-by-step procedure. This procedure is not mandatory but gives you head-ups on installation errors you may encounter before your upgrade. Step 1 | Prepare your environment for SCCM Installation Testdbupgrade To test the database for an upgrade, you must copy the site database to a SQL instance that does not host SCCM. The SQL version must run the same edition and version of your production SQL. Start by creating a new VM or connecting to an existing SQL server that can host your SCCM database. Install the right SQL version. Follow our post on how to install SQL Server if needed. Step 2 | Backup your database Once your SQL server is ready to receive the database copy, browse to … Read More