The limit of Software Inventory rules

On the Inventory Collection tab of the Software Inventory Client Agent Properties recently I have stumbled upon an issue where the New icon has been greyed out and disabled, not allowing me add any new rules defining the software inventory scope.

Image

After some googling around, this behaviour turned out to be documented and by design. In Configuration Manager 2007, there is a maximum limit of 64 rules. I am not sure if it is applicable to Configuration Manager 2012 as well, but it is worth to keep this limit in mind. Sometimes you learn things which are well documented the hard way.

For more information, refer to the Configuring Software Inventory Rules article on Microsoft Technet – http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc181215.aspx

The limit of Software Inventory rules

Access is denied when using Configuration Manager Remote Control

When using Configuration Manager Remote Control to manage SCCM Clients, user is asked for credentials. After authenticating, Access Denied error is received even if user is member of Permitted Viewers list specified in the Remote Tools Client Agent properties.

After investigating this issue, it turned out that DCOM was not enabled on affected computers. In order to enable DCOM, use the following procedure on computers that are experiencing this problem:
1. Open Component Services mmc. Start ->Run -> dcomcnfg.
2. Expand Component Services -> Computers -> My Computer.
3. Right click on My Computer and select Properties. Go to the Default Properties tab. Make sure that “Enable Distributed COM on this computer” option is enabled. Set Default Authentication Level to Connect and Default Impersonation Level to Identify.

Access is denied when using Configuration Manager Remote Control

How to force hardware/software inventory on SCCM Client?

In order to force Hardware Inventory on SCCM Client, run the following VBScript:

hInventoryActionID = "{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000001}"
Set oLocator = CreateObject("WbemScripting.SWbemLocator")
Set oServices = oLocator.ConnectServer( , "root\ccm\invagt")
oServices.Delete "InventoryActionStatus.InventoryActionID=""" & hInventoryActionID & """"
wscript.sleep 3000
Set cpApplet = CreateObject("CPAPPLET.CPAppletMgr")
Set actions = cpApplet.GetClientActions
For Each action In actions
If Instr(action.Name,"Hardware Inventory") > 0 Then
action.PerformAction
End if
Next

For more information, refer to the following MSDN article: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc144592.aspx

 

In order to force Software Inventory on SCCM Client, run the following VBScript:

sInventoryActionID = "{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000002}"
Set oLocator = CreateObject("WbemScripting.SWbemLocator")
Set oServices = oLocator.ConnectServer( , "root\ccm\invagt")
oServices.Delete "InventoryActionStatus.InventoryActionID=""" & sInventoryActionID & """"
wscript.sleep 3000
Set cpApplet = CreateObject("CPAPPLET.CPAppletMgr")
Set actions = cpApplet.GetClientActions
For Each action In actions
If Instr(action.Name,"Software Inventory") > 0 Then
action.PerformAction
End if
Next

For more information, refer to the following MSDN article: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc145432.aspx

How to force hardware/software inventory on SCCM Client?

How to extend hardware inventory information to include physical memory location?

In certain cases, beside the total amount of physical memory information, it is useful knowing the actual physical memory bank distribution across hardware memory slots. This is especially true when memory upgrade must be considered within the company in order to meet requirements imposed by the new version of client operating system.

By default, this is not included in Configuration Manager hardware inventory which therefore must be extended by editing sms_def.mof file. The Win32_PhysicalMemory WMI class represents a physical memory device located on a computer system and available to the operating system. To include Win32_PhysicalMemory WMI class in the scope of hardware inventory, the following lines should be added to the sms_def.mof file:

//* Physical memory location inventory.

[ SMS_Report(TRUE),
SMS_Group_Name("Physical Memory Location"),
SMS_Class_ID("Microsoft|PHYSICAL_MEMORY_LOCATION|1.0") ]
Class Win32_PhysicalMemory: SMS_Class_Template
{
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
uint64 Capacity;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
string Description;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
string DeviceLocator;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
string Manufacturer;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
uint16 MemoryType;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
string PartNumber;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
string SerialNumber;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
uint32 PositionInRow;
[key, SMS_Report(TRUE)]
uint32 Speed;
};

In this example Capacity, Description, DeviceLocator, Manufacturer, MemoryType, PartNumber, SerialNumber, PositionInRow and Speed properties of the Win32_PhysicalMemory WMI class will be queried and included in hardware inventory.
For a list of all available properties, you may refer to MSDN: Win32_PhysicalMemory Classhttp://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa394347(v=vs.85).aspx

Once this is done and first managed devices run hardware inventory based on extended sms_def.mof file, you can then create custom Configuration Manager report to display collected information. For a custom Configuration Manager report, the following query can be used:

SELECT
v_GS_SYSTEM.Name0 AS 'Computer Name',
Capacity0/1048576 AS 'Capacity (MB)',
Description0 AS 'Description',
DeviceLocator0 AS 'Device Locator',
Manufacturer0 AS 'Manufacturer',
PartNumber0 AS 'Part Number',
SerialNumber0 AS 'Serial Number',
MemoryType0 AS 'Memory Type',
PositionInRow0 AS 'Position In Row',
Speed0 AS 'Speed (ns)'
FROM
v_GS_PHYSICAL_MEMORY_LOCATION
JOIN
v_GS_SYSTEM ON v_GS_SYSTEM.ResourceID = v_GS_PHYSICAL_MEMORY_LOCATION.ResourceID
ORDER BY v_GS_SYSTEM.Name0

How to extend hardware inventory information to include physical memory location?

An error when performing Software Update Point synchronization

When performing Software Update Point synchronization on the child primary site, the following error was logged in the wsyncmgr.log file:

Sync failed: WSUS server not configured. Source: CWSyncMgr::DoSync

In my case, affected primary site was child-site of the central primary site which is configured to perform synchronization with the Microsoft Update.
First thing I have stumbled upon was the following TechNet article: Troubleshooting Software Updates Synchronization Failureshttp://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb735874.aspx which also contains possible solutions for the exact problem I was experiencing. However, none of the suggested solutions worked for me.

After spending some time troubleshooting, it turned out that there was a problem with the synchronization between the central (parent) and the affected primary (child) site. In order to fix the problem, I had to make sure that:
1. Standard Sender Address is configured appropriately on both sites and that
2. Public keys between the sites are manually exchanged (How to Manually Exchange Public Keys Between Siteshttp://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb693690.aspx)

Once synchronization between sites was successfully established, error in the wsyncmgr.log file was gone and Software Update Point synchronization works as expected.

An error when performing Software Update Point synchronization

Custom DCM report for showing summary compliance for a configuration baseline by computer

Recently I had to come up with a custom Desired Configuration Management (DCM) report which shows summary compliance for a configuration baseline by computer.
This report is linked from the builtin Summary compliance by configuration baseline report which passes Configuration Baseline Name and Configuration Baseline Content Version as input parameters to my custom report.

Here is the actual query used within my custom report:

SELECT
v_R_System.Name0 AS 'Computer Name',
v_CICurrentComplianceStatus.ComplianceStateName AS 'Compliance State Name',
v_CICurrentComplianceStatus.ComplianceState AS 'Compliance State',
v_LocalizedCIProperties_SiteLoc.DisplayName AS 'DCM Baseline Name',
v_ConfigurationItems.CIVersion AS 'DCM Baseline Content Version'
FROM
v_BaselineTargetedComputers
INNER JOIN v_R_System ON v_R_System.ResourceID = v_BaselineTargetedComputers.ResourceID
INNER JOIN v_ConfigurationItems ON v_ConfigurationItems.CI_ID = v_BaselineTargetedComputers.CI_ID
INNER JOIN v_CICurrentComplianceStatus ON v_CICurrentComplianceStatus.CI_ID = v_ConfigurationItems.CI_ID AND v_CICurrentComplianceStatus.ResourceID = v_BaselineTargetedComputers.ResourceID
INNER JOIN v_LocalizedCIProperties_SiteLoc ON v_LocalizedCIProperties_SiteLoc.CI_ID = v_ConfigurationItems.CI_ID
WHERE
v_LocalizedCIProperties_SiteLoc.DisplayName = @name
AND
v_ConfigurationItems.CIVersion = @cicontentversion

Custom DCM report for showing summary compliance for a configuration baseline by computer

Configuration Manager Console fails to open

Problem description
Configuration Manager Console fails to open with the following error: “MMC cannot initialize the snap-in.

MMC cannot initialize the snap-in.
MMC cannot initialize the snap-in.

After clicking on OK, empty Configuration Manager Console opens as shown on the screenshot below:

Empty Configuration Manager Console
Empty Configuration Manager Console

Resolution
Open new instance of the Microsoft Management Console (MMC) (Start -> Run… -> mmc -> OK) and go to File -> Options -> Disk Cleanup.
Click on the Delete Files to delete MMC cache files and per-user preferences for console files which are saved in user’s profile.

MMC: Disk Cleanup
MMC: Disk Cleanup

After that, restart Configuration Manager Console to verify if it now works as expected.

Configuration Manager Console fails to open