[Today's post is provided by Chaohao Xu.]

The Transfer Site Settings Wizard in Configuration Manager 2007 R3 provides two new options that are shown in the following picture: Power Management Agent and Enable Active Directory Delta Discovery and Delta Discovery Interval. To transfer these settings from one site to another, the source and destination sites must both be running Configuration Manager 2007 R3. 

The Power Management Agent setting allows you to transfer the configuration of the power management agent and supports two settings; enabled or disabled.

The Enable Active Directory Delta Discovery and Delta Discovery Interval setting deserves a little more attention and is discussed below.

 

 Enable Active Directory Delta Discovery and Delta Discovery Interval

 This option applies to the following types of discovery methods:

  • Active Directory System Discovery
  • Active Directory Security Group Discovery
  • Active Directory System Group Discovery
  • Active Directory User Discovery

 It is a best practice to select Polling schedule when you select Enable Active Directory Delta Discovery and Delta Discovery Interval. This ensures that all the settings related to the discovery schedule and delta discovery transfer together. This is important because with Configuration Manager 2007 R3, delta discovery can change how schedules are evaluated. Unless you transfer all the settings, it is possible the resulting schedule will not be as you expect.

When delta discovery is enabled on Configuration Manager 2007 R3, as shown in the following picture, the properties used by the discovery component are set as follows: 

  • PROPERTY <Startup Schedule><0001170000500008><><0>
    The Startup Schedule value is when the discovery method is set to run. Before R3 this is set to the polling schedule you configure for the discovery method.  This can be a recurring schedule or a one-time event.  With R3 and delta discovery, the discovery method does not use the polling schedule for the Startup Schedule and instead uses the delta discovery interval you configure.
  • PROPERTY <Enable Incremental Sync><><><1>
    The Enable Incremental Sync value is the delta discovery interval and is how frequently the site will run a delta discovery cycle for the discovery method.  Incremental synchronizations begin after an initial full discovery process has run.  This is only available on R3 sites.
  • PROPERTY <Full Sync Schedule><0001170000500008><><0>
    The Full Sync Schedule value is how often a full discovery process runs. This is not a delta discovery cycle but a full discovery cycle with a schedule that is equivalent to that defined as the polling schedule.  This can be set to be a recurring action or a one-time event by configuring the discovery methods polling schedule. With R3, this is an initial full discovery cycle, and if recurring, includes subsequent full discovery cycles. 

 

With the configurations shown in the example, the Startup Schedule is set to the delta discovery interval of five minutes and the Full Sync Schedule is set to the polling schedule, which is daily at 12:00 am.  This configuration results in the discovery method initiating a full discovery cycle at midnight every day, and running a delta discovery cycle every five minutes. 

 When you disable delta discovery the schedule properties for the discovery component revert to pre-R3 behavior.  The Startup Schedule is set to be the polling schedule, there is no delta discovery process, and the Full Sync Schedule setting is ignored. This is shown in the following table.  What this means is the discovery method will run on the defined polling schedule. Because delta discovery (incremental sync) is not enabled, there are no supplemental discovery actions.

Property Delta Discovery Enabled Delta Discovery Disabled
Startup Schedule Delta Discovery Interval Polling Schedule
Enable Incremental Sync 1 0
Full Sync Schedule Polling Schedule N/A

Transferring Settings between Sites

The Transfer Site Settings Wizard needs to handle these property changes, which result in transferring different properties based on the whether delta discovery is enabled or disabled on the source and destination site. The following tables illustrate the outcome for different scenarios, which apply to both online transfers and offline transfers (exporting settings to an XML file). 

R3 Site and Delta Discovery Enabled  -> R3 Site and Delta Discovery Enabled
Wizard Selection Destination Site Property Change
* represents property from source site
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*

 

R3 Site and Delta Discovery Enabled  -> R3 Site and Delta Discovery Disabled
Wizard Selection Destination Site Property Change
* represents property from source site
Startup Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Full Sync Schedule = Startup Schedule
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*

 

R3 Site and Delta Discovery Disabled  -> R3 Site  and Delta Discovery Enabled
Wizard Selection Destination Site Property Change
* represents property from source site
Full Sync Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Startup Schedule = Full Sync Schedule
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*

 

R3 Site Delta Discovery Disabled  -> R3 Site Delta Discovery Disabled
Wizard Selection Destination Site Property Change
* represents property from source site
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*
Enable Incremental Sync = Enable Incremental Sync*
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Full Sync Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*

 

R3 Site Delta Discovery Disabled  -> SP2 Site
Wizard Selection Destination Site Property Change
* represents property from source site
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*
Nothing changes on target site
Startup Schedule = Startup Schedule*

 

R3 Site  Delta Discovery Enabled  -> SP2 Site
Wizard Selection Destination Site Property Change
* represents property from source site
Startup Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*
Nothing changes on target site
Startup Schedule = Full Sync Schedule*

Conclusion

When the destination site is running Configuration Manager 2007 R3, as a best practice, select the option Polling schedule when you select the Enable Active Directory Delta Discovery and Delta Discovery Interval option in the Transfer Site Settings Wizard. For all other scenarios, reference the tables above to confirm the outcome of your transferred settings.

--Chaohao Xu

This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.