As you know, Microsoft released System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager SP1 and System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP2 (SCCM 2012) in the same time. You can read more here.
This release can be confusing for some people because 2012 SP2 and 2012 R2 SP1 binaries are the same. The same .exe or .iso file.
For exemple, when you want to download and install System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager SP1 (SCCM 2012 R2 SP1) from scratch, there is no more 2012 R2 SP1 iso. Only 2 files can be downloaded:
- SC2012_SP2_Configmgr_SCEP.exe (762 MB)
- SC2012_R2_SP1_Configmgr.exe (1,10 MB)
SCCM 2012 R2 SP1 Download
For migrating or for fresh install, the file to mandatory execute is SC2012_SP2_Configmgr_SCEP.exe. We only use SC2012_R2_SP1_Configmgr.exe when we want to activate R2 features.
Let’s see how to do a fresh installation of System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager SP1 (SCCM 2012 R2 SP1)
System Center Configuration Manager 2012 R2 now supports SQL Server 2014. But you will have an error during the wizard if you try install SCCM 2012 SP1 /R2 on SQL Server 2014.
SCCM Installation Wizard checks the version of SQL Server. However, it treats SQL Server 2014 like a version not supported:
The SQL Server srvsql.lab.local is not accessible or its version not supported.
Microsoft released a patch to correct this problem. KB3020755
The description of the KB is “Restore fails when the site database” but we will copy dll into the Wizard folder.
We need to do 4 steps:
- Download and extract the KB into a temporary folder.
- Execute CM12-R2-QFE-KB3020755-X64-ENU-OOB.exe. It will extract 2 files : prereqcore.dll and setupcore.dll
- Copy these files into the SMSSETUP\BIN\X64\ folder.
- Exit and restart the installation Wizard.
SCCM Team wrote a post on this topic here
Sometimes, it can be useful to execute an Application / Package in the SCCM Software Center using Powershell.
For example, if an application is only available, not required, in the deployment and you want to install several package without logging to the computer.
Unfortunately, there is no built-in powershell cmdlet to do this. We must call method with a specific dll.
With System Center Configuration Manager 2012, there is a new functionality: Application Catalog. Using Application Catalog, you can deploy an application on user collection, and all users can use this web page to install or request an application.
To launch the Application Catalog, you can use the existing link on Software Center:
Link Software center
Depends on your system configuration, Internet Explorer can prompt for your login / password. Even if you are in your domain.
If you want to deploy the App-V 5 Agent on your computers, you can use System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2012. The most easily method is to use an Application. By this way, you have the possibility to link some Dependencies and target specific operating system architecture (x64 or x86).
To deploy App-V 5 agent, you have to follow these steps:
- Configure Dependencies.
- Create Application.
- Configure Deployments type for x64 and x86.
- Deploy on a collection.
- Check installation.
Sometime, you need to deploy a KB using Application (.msu file) to your clients. Because it is not available in the Microsoft Update Catalog, you can not use Software Update to install it.
For example, to install App-V 5 on your clients, the Windows Management Framework 3.0 is a prerequisite for Windows 7. Windows 8 and 8.1 already include it.
This KB is not available in the catalog, we will use a Application to deploy it.
We will see how to deploy the Windows Management Framework 3.0 (KB2506143) using Application in System Center Configuration Manager 2012. With this method, you can link it as Dependency on another application and the installation can be automatically done. Continue reading
With System Center Configuration Manager, you can retrieve a lot of information about your computers, specially the Hardware Inventory. And with Reporting Service Point, you can display it easily via a web page.
However, if you would like to display the Free space on a drive, you can do this but it is not enabled.
By default, when you execute the report “Disk information for a specific computer – Logical disks“, you will get a blank information about Free Space:
To enable this option, you need to change the Hardware Inventory:
- In the Logical Disk classe, check the Free Space item.
After that, wait for the Machine Policy retrieval and at the next Hardware Inventory, you will get the information.
You can get more information on Hardware Inventory here
In order to deploy App-V 5 on your clients, the .Net Framework 4 Full is a prerequisite for Windows 7 computers. Windows 8 and 8.1 already include this Framework.
We will see how to deploy .Net Framework 4 Full using Application in System Center Configuration Manager 2012. With this method, you can link it as Dependency on another application and installation can be automatically done. Continue reading
With Configuration Manager 2012, you have a new feature to deploy your software: Application. To use Application, you need to add a Detection Method. This detection method is based on several criterias and it will check if the application is already installed on the computer.
SCCM included three built-in detections:
- File/Folder: check if a file exists on the drive. Date modified, Version and Size can be used.
- Registry: Check if a registry key exists.
- Windows Installer: Check if a product code is installed.
Moreover, you can user another detection:
- Custom script: write and execute you own script to detect the application. You can use Powershell, VBScript and JScript.
However, when you want to install a software update using Application, there is no built-in function to detect if the update is installed. You have to use a custom script.
When Microsoft release a new Cumulative Update for ConfigMgr 2012, the SCCM Agent is updated too with a new version. To fix some bugs and improvements, you need to deploy it on all your clients.
To do this, you can choose two solutions:
- Use the CAB file in the folder [SCCMInstall]\hotfix\KB\SCUP and deploy it with SCUP, that means you are using Software Updates.
- Deploy the new version with two packages, one for x86 and one for x64, included in the Cumulative Update. With this solution, you can easily update your client with no technical requisite.
We will see how to update clients with the second solution, using package.