I am pleased to announce that we have just published a whitepaper that provides guidance for customers transitioning from SMS 2003 Patch Management to System Center Configuration Manager 2007 Software Updates Management.
You can download the paper from here:
http://download.microsoft.com/download/d/8/6/d861e149-76f7-4348-89aa-7f3d9777f5ae/Configuration Manager Software Updates Management Guidance - Migration from ITMU.doc
Here is a description:
While the release of System Center Configuration Manager 2007 has been accompanied by robust functional and procedural product documentation, the integration of WSUS introduced two additional challenges:
¾ Successful migration of SMS 2003 environments to Configuration Manager while maintaining the existing software update levels of service.
¾ Clarifying a dramatic shift in a fundamental process in the minds of experienced SMS 2003 administrators.
This whitepaper provides guidance on how to migrate software update management from SMS 2003 to Configuration Manager, how to operate in the transition period while maintaining ongoing software update deployments for both SMS 2003 and Configuration Manager clients, and best practices for managing software updates using Configuration Manager.
This document assumes that the reader has experience with both SMS 2003 and the Inventory Tool for Microsoft Updates (ITMU). Additionally, it is beneficial for the reader to be familiar with the operational processes associated with enterprise software update management.
In SCCM 2007, we added a neat feature similar to one provided by Automatic Updates that gives managed clients the ability to install updates prior to deadline. End users can configure this by clicking the "Schedule Installation" as shown below or by going to directly to the Configuration Manager control panel applet under the "Updates" tab.
This is a very fundamental question for Admins trying to raise the level of software update compliance at their company.
Traditionally using SMS 2003, the normal practice was to look at a sample of client logs and use that as a basis for guessing what the top problems were for non-compliance.
In SCCM 2007, we have added a couple of new reports that can help solve this problem for Scan and Deployment, "Troubleshooting 1 - Scan Errors" & "Troubleshooting 2 - Deployment Errors" which displays groupings of the last error received from clients. You can sort by the "count" column to get a stack-ranked list of these errors, which can greatly increase the accuracy in determining the exact top non-compliance issues and dramatically reduce the time & effort required to make the assessment.
No more scrubbing through client logs!
In real-life deployments within MSIT and TAP customers, we used these reports constantly to quickly identify problem areas such as Group Policy conflicts, low WUA version, networking issues, and SUP configuration issues. By addressing the top problems, customers were able to eliminate major sources of failures and achieve much greater compliance numbers.
It's been a while since I added a post. Let's start up again with a quick one.
I was recently asked when do SCCM clients download updates and when would they show the notification balloon in the system tray - here is the answer:
1. SCCM clients download updates according to a deployment-specific setting in the Deploy Software Updates Wizard (DSUW). They begin downloading at the time specified in the "Make Software Updates Available" setting on the Deployment Schedule page. If you select "As soon as possible" then the updates will start being downloaded as soon as the deployment policy hits the client.
2. The notification balloon is displayed immediately for deployments without a deadline and only after updates have completed download for deployments with a deadline.