IT Consultant Everyday Notes

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Category Archives: SCCM

SCCM: Backup SCCM using native SQL Backup

Native SQL backup has many advantages like compression, for example. Kent Agerlund has a nice tutorial how to automate the backup including saving zipped cd.latest file which is necessary for SCCM CB recovery if you made at least one in-console upgrade for your SCCM. The article is here. Unfortunately his powershell script does not clean old cd.latest archives and that can be a problem taking in consideration their size. In one of the comments under original post a modification was suggested, so Copy cd.latest powershell script would look like:

powershell.exe -command “Get-ChildItem –Path ‘U:\SQLBackup\*’ –Include ‘*.zip’ | Where-Object {$_.CreationTime -lt (Get-Date).AddDays(-7)} | Remove-Item; Add-Type –Assembly ‘System.IO.Compression.FileSystem’ -PassThru | Select -First 1 | ForEach-Object { [IO.Compression.ZIPFile]::CreateFromDirectory(‘e:\program files\microsoft configuration manager\cd.latest’, ‘U:\sqlBackup\cdlatest’ + (Get-Date –format ‘yyyyMMddHHmm’) + ‘.zip’) }”

  (of course, change paths to your SCCM installation folder and your backup folders).

With that script implemented only last 7 cd.latest archives will be saved.


SCCM: In-console Update stuck in “Checking prerequisites”

I am installing quite a lot of SCCM environments these days and several times bumped into an issue when in-console update from one version of SCCM to the next one stuck on some step.

For “Downloading” Microsoft recommends to restart SMS_Executive, but for “Checkin Prerequisites” it was more difficult – Community recommended to play with SQL databases or start update from cd.latest.

None of those methods is supported by Microsoft though. (Se more here:

With version SCCM build 1706 Microsoft finally introduced a CMUpdateReset tool allowing to rectify a failed state for in-console upgrade by deleting a failing package. Here is a link to KB describing the process:

SCCM: Side-by-side migration issue with client reassignment

I was busy with an SCCM migration recently. A Customer wanted to get gradual side-by-side migration from an old SCCM 2012 R2 to a shiny SCCM CB.

The issue I faced was related to a Client re-assignment from the old to the new SCCM site.

As recommended I tried Jason Sandy’s script to reinstall the old client and configure the new one for the new site.

The Client was successfully installed, but kept connect to the old site.

I tried to re-register site assignment in WMI as described and restart CCMEXEC service.

In ClientLocation log I saw the new site was assigned, MP found, but after that the site immediately was re-assigned to an old one and the Client tried to connect back to the old site Sad smile

I tried  completely uninstall the client, use push etc.. without success.

Finally I noted

LSRefreshSiteCode: Group Policy Updated the assigned site code <old site code>, which is different than the existing assigned site code <new site code >. Will attempt re-assignment.

I checked GPOs and found a disabled GPO containing SCCM ADMX template with a site assignment.

The matter in fact once applied GPO tattoes its settings in the registry and they remains there even if GPO is not active anymore.

So I opened GPO template (located in ConfigMgr installation folder\Tools\ConfigMgrADMTemplates and founf the registry key in question is “hklm\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SMS\Mobile Client”. Originally I planned to change only site code value there, but found Henrik’s article where he recommended to remove all values from the key all together.

Probably both approaches can work, so I created a simple cmd script and pushed it from the SCCM

REG delete “hklm\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SMS\Mobile Client” /v GPRequestedSiteAssignmentCode /f
REG delete “hklm\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SMS\Mobile Client” /v GPSiteAssignmentRetryDuration(Hour) /f
REG delete “hklm\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SMS\Mobile Client” /v GPSiteAssignmentRetryInterval(Min) /f
cscript set-site-code.vbs

first three commands are cleaning settings hardcoded by GPO, the forth one force SCCM site code using a VBS script from here

After the script finished I restarted ccmexec and fount the client registered in the new site successfully.

SCCM: Installation on hardened server

One of my Customers asked me to migrate an existing SCCM 2012 R2 to SCCM CB. They preferred side-by-side migration.

Everything looked good until I figure out the server they gave me for the new SCCM was hardened. I guess security team did it for good but as a result I had some fun with a trivial SCCM installation.

1. They used a third-party tool to remove TLS 1.0-1.1 and old SSL leavin only TLS 1.2 available. 3DES was killed too.

As a result, when I ran prereqchk.exe /Local before SCCM installation I received errors about SQL indexing, collation page (which I knew I set correctly), sysadmin membership etc… SQL looked good, but in

prereqchk log I saw: “Failed to connect to the SQL Server, connection type: SMS Master”

and in even log I observed: A fatal error occurred while creating a TLS client credential. The internal error state is 10013.

I removed fresh Machine keys from Programdata\microsoft\crypto\RSA – did not help

I set “Use FIPS compliant algorithms for encryption”  after that the error in event log changed saying TLS 1.0 protocol is using (never new it is FIPS compliant), but it is not configured.

So, at this point I ran IISCrypto and learnt the protocols are disabled.

As soon as I enabled the old obsolete TLS 1.0 prereqchk.exe passed smoothly and I started SCCM installation

Microsoft says  only SSL3.0 should be disabled and clearly requires both TLS 1.1 and 1.2 enabled. But in my case I still needed TLS 1.0 enabled too. So it looks like a working progress for me.

There is another article from Microsoft. It talks about TLS 1.2 configuration for SCCM CB 1610+. But it looks like it is about post-installation TLS 1.2 support and had an issue during installation. In addition, I tried my best to understand what should I configure on Windows Server 2016 with .Net 4.7 and SQL 2016 SP1 and as far as I understood I should do nothing, it supposed just work Smile. I would prefer Microsoft present the information in some kind of matrix for different .Net versions, OS versions and SQL…

2. Everything was fine until installer tried to setup a Management Point.

This time an error in ConfigMgrsetup.log said:

Unable to find an existing certificate in the store.  Creating a new self-signed certificate…    Configuration Manager Setup    11/20/2017 11:48:55 AM    3228 (0x0C9C)
Failed to release a handle to a cryptographic key (0x80070057)    Configuration Manager Setup    11/20/2017 11:48:55 AM    3228 (0x0C9C)
Failed to release a handle to a CSP or key container (0x80070057)    Configuration Manager Setup    11/20/2017 11:48:55 AM    3228 (0x0C9C)
Failed to create the certificate (0x8009000f)    Configuration Manager Setup    11/20/2017 11:48:55 AM    3228 (0x0C9C)
ERROR: Failed to find or create SQL Server certificate.    Configuration Manager Setup    11/20/2017 11:48:55 AM    3228 (0x0C9C)

this time I spent more time troubleshooting and finally opened a case with Microsoft. The tech found local Administrators was kicked out from permissions for Programdata\microsoft\crypto\RSA  and Setup could not create a private key there. We granted Full Control to local Administrators group, re-install MP and tis time it was setup.

3. Setup, bot not properly running – both standard tests ( from web browser gave me Internal Server Error (HTTP Error 500.19)

Fortunately I found Heinrich’s article ( I re-installed WSUS  and MP started to work. After that I ran wsusutil for postinstall configuration and it finished successfully.

And after all changes above I succeeded to install SCM 4.0 before it failed with generic 1603 error.

USMT: Archive viewer

Mike Morawski wrote a nice wrapper for Migercover tool to browse .MIG files created by USMT/EasyTransfer. I am using that to check what exactly will be copied and tune up the config files.

The tool can be downloaded from Mike’s blog here:

Please note, Mike is talking about USMT3/4 and the tool was not updated for a while. But it works for my USMT 10 at least for the current version 10.0.16299.15.

SCCM: Side-by-side migration. Changing Site for Clients.

I do site migrations for my Customers from time to time. Most often SCCM 2007/2012 to SCCM CB. The procedure is well documented and in generally works well. But the last step – move SCCM Clients from the old site to the new site is not very clear.

What I normally did is using Jason Sandys’ startup script ( re-install am SCCM Client with the new site code. But that always looked like a bit too much for me.

These days I am participating IT/DEV Connection conference and raised this scenario for panel of SCCM experts we have here. Here is the main points of the discussion:

1. Do not use SCCM ADMX template in GPO to change SCCM code only. Sometimes does not wrk, just breaks the client.

2. Jason’s script is probably the best way to re-point the client for today

3. Wally also mentioned we can create a package for a NEW client with the new site code on the OLD SCCM and deploy it. That will update the Client binaries and repoint it the same time.

4. Some people recommended to manage site assignment via site Boundaries (in this case we should separate boundaries for old and new SCCM). But as far as I remember it is not recommend even by MS itself.

So the bottom line is: after side-by-side migration we need to reinstall the Client using either Jason’s script above or method recommended by Wally.

SCCM: SCUP 2011 on Windows Server 2016

found a nice post ( describing how to Install SCUP 2011 on Server 2016. Normally installation fails due to WSUS version check, but if you change WSUS version to  6.3.9600.1777 in registry (HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Update Services\Server\Setup VersionString) for time of SCUP installation you can apparently finish SCUP installation. Of course without any support from MS Smile

or, as mentioned in the post comments just run SCUP .msi with /qb switch Winking smile

Meanwhile people continue to vote for this feature for SCCM CB here:

SCCM: Task Sequence Import fails (System.NullReferenceException)

I am leading a Windows 10 migration project currently. We prepared TAsk Sequences in Dev environment and SCCM admin tried to export/import them from Dev to Prod. Export was successfull, but Import miserably failed with


Object Reference not set to an instance of an object.

As usual very nice and descriptive SCCM error.

Fortunately Mike Terrill bumped into it before and wrote about it:

Note: When we tried to open a zip file containing TS archive using internal Windows Zip packer it failed. We used 7zip – it opens/saves the archive successfully.

SCCM: SUP is not working due to WSUS crash

Interesting case – WSUS built for SCCM SUP crashed regularly. It started from once in a month, after that more and more often and finally WSUS application pool could not stay and hour. Recommended solution was to recycle WSUS application pool. But that was not really a solution since permanent monitoring is required.

It turned out to be a known issue for SCCM 2012 (looks like SCCM CB is affected too) and Microsoft recommends to enlarge App Pool private memory to 4 (or in some cases to 8!) GB. Sounds a bit crazy for me but at least WSUS is up and running now.

More technical details in the following article:

SCCM: Clean encrypted drive before TS start

One of my Customers happens to have a McAfee encrypted drives on Laptops and Desktops he plans to migrate to Windows 10. Unfortunately McAffee version was not cooperative with SCCM and he was ok to clean the drives.

To achieve that I added a file called diskpart.txt on my file server (where my Network Access Account has access)

The file contains two lines:

Select disk 0

After that I customized the boot image by adding a pre-start command and pointing the boot image to the shared folder containing my configuration file:


The script is invoked after you press ‘Next’ on OSD dialog logon page but before you select any Task Sequence.

Did the trick for me.