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You should be able to handle 6 machines in a Provisioning task. Were the machines contacted by the core?
Are these SWD tasks complicated? I am curious why you are using Provisioning instead of Software Deployment to deploy software. Something to remember is that Provisioning was designed for baremetal machine provisioning. We will create copies of templates when they are ran and these should be cleaned. Please reference http://community.landesk.com/support/docs/DOC-5632.
Currently, LANDesk doesn't offer anything with regards to setting the order or queuing of the installation of a large number of distribution packages, in this case 12-16. I have tried using Dependant packages, but even with the new return code mapping, its hit and miss and often stops and fails to complete. These machines are OS only and the distribution packages are installing the software as part of the System configuration step so whether barebones or not, its past the Post-OS installation steps. As I mentioned, it works fine with a single machine, but fails randomly with multiples.
FYI, this has been recommended by many LANDesk admins and even by some LANDesk support techs.
This is just my opinion from experience, I usually try to stick to the "Execute File" method in provisioning. When I use a distribution package I am at the mercy of the sdclient and all the rules of bandwidth throttling. With the execute file method I have successfully hit up to 100 machines. Now don't get me wrong, provisioning non-baremetal machines is really flaky and unreliable and not recommended by me in a must happen deployment, I have had some start within 10 minutes and I have had machines that never run the task. I have even deleted the schedule and locked template, turned around and rescheduled with the same results. My counterpart micro managed this down to 95% of the machines, hats off to him for persistence, but he could get no further. In short I only use SWD in provisioning when absolutely necessary and or to cumbersome to use the execute file method.
Hope this helps in some way,
That is a good observation and maybe something I will consider trying; well, I guess I have tried it for deploying drivers when HII doesn't work. 95% is great for most software deployments depending on what % of your machines are laptops vs desktops.