3 Replies Latest reply on Jul 21, 2009 2:08 AM by phoffmann

    Custom data forms not loading


      So recently we had our LD admin leave and I assumed most of her work along with my desktop support duties. Needless to say, I have a lot to learn in IT so if something I say comes off ignorant/wrong sorry in advance.


      We're running ld SP1 for the next couple weeks, but I'm trying to get our agent ready for the upgrade. I was asked to get data forms on the agent so when we have a PC deployment a box prompts us with items needed to be installed IE: VPN, config call pilot etc. I created the list, i configured the agent to be automatic with forms on startup and my deployment checklist  to send with agent. I've scheduled the form as a task and ran it(along with rebooting the machine) to try to get the forms to populate on my test machine. I've gone through the LD help within mgmnt suite, and have been browsing the forums looking to see if anyone has had the same problem. Hopefully I'm making some simple mistake somewhere, but it seems like I've exuasted all of my resources. Any help would be much obliged.



      Thanks in advance,


        • 1. Re: Custom data forms not loading
          phoffmann SupportEmployee

          Hi Chris - welcome to the LANDesk community. Hopefully, we can help you along with a couple of things .


          Before I begin, a few generally important or useful things for you, resources wise.


          1 - BKM's (Best Known Methods) for various bits on this site:

          - http://community.landesk.com/support/tags?tags=bkm


          2 - DroppedPackets.Org - an 'of sorts' 3rd party site with great LANDesk-related resources + tools.

          - http://www.droppedpackets.org/


          This is stuff created by various LANDesk and non-LANDesk folks, and contains useful information for mostly advanced functions.


          3 - "Basic" product documentation

          - This is on your product CD and/or download. Look in the "<your CD/install-source>\docs\LDMS\" directory. Two files in particular are of interest:


          3.a - "LDMSDeploy.pdf" - LANDesk Deployment Guide (mostly covers installation + initial agent deployment)

          3.b - "LDMSUsers.pdf" - LANDesk User Guide (mostly covers using the individual components).




          Also, it may help if you state your technical background (if any). The comment about "having to learn a lot about IT" can be taken quite a few ways, so I'll try to keep things simple and detailed, but if you don't understand something or I assume that you know something you do not, please ask for that part to be clarified if needed.




          Custom Data Forms (CDF's) are just files that need to go on the client, at the end of the day. There's really only 3 sections to this.


          I - Creation of the CDF's

          II - Copying the files to the client

          III - Filling out the data forms.

          IV - Sending the data


          Let's look at those in detail:


          I.1 - You create these via the 32-bit Console (as you've already done).

          I.2 - When you're done, the files get written to the Core's LDLOGON share (\\YourCoreName\LDLOGON\) as a .FRM file (the name will be random). If you check the directory for .FRM files ("dir *.frm" will do), you will see that the names appear to be random (i.e. - just because you named your form "My New CDF" doesn't mean that the filename will be "My New CDF.frm").




          NOTE -- you CAN open these files with Notepad, if you want, to get a look at them. They're quite simple in structure.


          II.1  - Copying the files to the client is normally done via either an agent-redeployment, OR a scheduled task (you can right-click on a form and create a scheduled task for it that way).


          II.2 - CDF's get copied to the clients into this directory -> "C:\PROGRAM FILES\LANDESK\LDCLIENT\". Make sure that they're there.




          III - Filling out the data form will normally occur when you run a full inventory scan. There's a couple of "BUT..." options here ... which have to do with the command-line options for the inventory scanner.


          III.1 - If you run the inventory scanner via "START -> PROGRAMS -> LANDESK MANAGEMENT -> Inventory Scanner", unfilled custom data forms will show up, ASSUMING you've configured it to do that (configuration depends on what you set up in the "Custom Data Forms" section in the agent configuration.


          NOTE -- If you right-click on a device in the 32-bit console and select the "inventory scan" option, or use the "inventory scanner" script to run an inventory scan, custom data forms will *NOT* show up. The reason for this is to do with Windows. This is because they used the "/NOCD" or "No Custom Data" switch. The short of the "why" is this:


          If inventory runs and were to display CDF's and Windows is locked / not logged in, then the inventory scanner freezes, waiting for the custom data form to be filled out ... which it either won't be for a long time (depending on when the user gets back and unlocks his workstation), OR "not at all" ... in the case of a "run at logon" time. The problem with the logon screen is that the user context that we display the CDF in (because no one is logged in) will inevitably be LOCAL SYSTEM ... which isn't going to be ANY user that logs in, so the inventory scanner will continue to wait ... and wait ... and wait ... which means that either the prcoess needs to be terminated, or the client needs to be restarted.


          Until then, you will not be able to run inventory on this client (since you can only run one instance of the inventory scanner at any one time).


          III.2 - The thing to check client-side (to make sure CDF's will run) are the following:


          III.2.a - Command-line of the inventory scanner (must not include the "/NOCD" option).

          III.2.b -The LDSCNHLP.INI (think of it as a config-file for the inventory scanner) must not be empty. Normally, it should contain content similar to this:


          [EXECUTE WIN16]


          [EXECUTE WIN32]

          LAUNCH1=C:\Program Files\LANDesk\LDClient\ldcstm32.exe /s



          [DATA FILES]



          This part is VERY important, as THIS is the stuff that tells the inventory scanner to run the custom data form stuff when an inventory scan runs.


          To compare, a client's LDSCNHLP.INI that is not configured to show custom data forms during inventory run, looks like this:


          [EXECUTE WIN16]


          [EXECUTE WIN32]


          [DATA FILES]






          III - Data with which the custom data forms are filled out are stored in the LDCUSTOM.DAT file (which, again, you can open with notepad).


          IV - the data in the LDCUSTOM.DAT is sent with any inventory scan to the core that includes a software scan as part of it.




          Hope this helps / clarifies things for you.


          - Paul Hoffmann

          LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead



          • 2. Re: Custom data forms not loading

            That is alot of good information and I really appreciate the time into helping me out Paul, I owe you a beer or five my friend. I was under the impression that CDF's was a simple edit within the agent and drop it down onto a users machine for it to pop up.



            Again thank you very much.



            PS.. My backround is, 3 years helpdesk during college, 2 years as a intern working with desk support/cisco switch maintence, 6 months as desktop support specialist. Got into IT becuase of Everquest haha.

            • 3. Re: Custom data forms not loading
              phoffmann SupportEmployee

              No problems, glad to be able to help.


              Few things in LANDesk are "simple", we just do a reasonably decent job of making it appear as such (one of the bigger problems when one is trying to do intrinsically complicated things). Hope you'll have much fun with your custom data forms .


              - Paul Hoffmann

              LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead