2 Replies Latest reply on Feb 4, 2009 10:59 PM by cknott

    Software Distribution woes

    Apprentice

      I work for a Large secondary college and have implemented Landesk throughout our entire system for management and software distribution.  Because the need of flexibility is there with different software packages needed at various times we have built only a base software image with the basics like office and so forth.

       

      We have renew and reimage 300 machines, consisting of 130 XP machines and 170 Vista Enterprise machines.  We have at least 50 applications to deploy accross the entire system for different labs.

       

      We have so far tried dependecy installers and recently a provisioning template to deploy the packages to all machines.  We have all labs in different subnets and so forth so we are trying to implement the best and fastest procedure for deploying the packages.  As well as future proofing it for reimage tasks where the software will start install again.  So far just doing

       

      We have also dedicated a machine in each subnet as just a PXE rep to support that subnet.

       

      Questions I have.

       

      1. Should I be using download from source or Multicast
      2. Should a multicast rep be designated to start with or let the system select
      3. Why do when I send a Provisioning Template to 56 computesrs 40 go the other 16 hang, but it has now fone on for ages and they freeze
        • 1. Re: Software Distribution woes
          MarXtar ITSMMVPGroup

          Q. Should I be using download from source or Multicast

           

          Depends what you are doing.  Install from source is the fastest when building a machine. Multicast is good for distributing to many systems when they are already out in the environment.  Multicast is not good for swdist when building a few machines as it is meant to be low bandwidth impact.

           

          Q. Should a multicast rep be designated to start with or let the system select

           

          If you are able to, set a preferred subnet rep.  It makes the process go faster and you can also increase the time for the package to sit in the cache to make this faster for futrue distributions.  If you have systems that are always on then consider using software distribution preferred servers as you can then replicate the packages out to local repositories rather than relying on the multicast method.

           

          Multicast reps come in very useful when deploying to an existing environment but you don't want to have to provision the packages out first.  It is an automated method that avoids the admin work associated with preferred servers, however there are good reasons (such as raw speed) for the use of preferred servers.

           

          Q. Why do when I send a Provisioning Template to 56 computesrs 40 go the other 16 hang, but it has now fone on for ages and they freeze

           

          Not certain.  Possibly too many for the server to handle?  Probably a good one to log with LANDesk support so they can help you troubleshoot directly.

           

          Mark Star - MarXtar LANDesk Enhancements

          Home of Power State Notifier & Wake-On-WAN for LANDesk

          • 2. Re: Software Distribution woes
            cknott SupportEmployee

            Shaun,

             

            I would add a little to what Mark said about the MDR's.  When a machine gets a software distribution job, it will first check the local sdmcache to see if it has the files, then it will do a peer discovery to see if any peers on the subnet have the file, and then it will go to the core or preferred server.  If you have a designated MDR you can cache software in the sdmcache folder so that clients will pull the files using peer download.

             

            By default the MDR will keep stuff in its sdmcache directory for 14 days, and then it gets cleaned out.  You can modify this in the MDR registry in this key:

             

            HKLM\Software\Intel\LANDesk\LDWM\Distribution\Multicast\Discard Period

            HKLM\Software\Intel\LANDesk\LDWM\Distribution\Multicast\Subnet Rep Discard Period

             

             

             

            Please note that the values are specified in seconds.

             

             

            A custom vulnerability that manages this value is available at  http://www.droppedpackets.org/security/custom-definitions/v_intl_landesk_discard_period.xml/view

             

            If you manually copy files to the sdmcache folder on the MDR, the Targeted Multicast Service on the MDR needs to be restarted before it will "see" the files there for peer download.

             

            I hope this helps, keep us posted on how it goes.