Our OSD technical deep dive session was a hit and we’d like to thank again all those who attended. We got quite a few questions during the session and we’d like to address them all so here we go:

Session 1

I understand there are new TS Actions available with Nomad 2012. How do I get all of those new actions in my CM07 TS Editor? ­

The task sequence integration is also available for ConfigMgr 07. You need to make sure you install the Admin UI extensions.

Are Nomad 2012 and ConfigMgr 2007 compatible?

Yes Nomad 2012 supports CM07

All of the configurations you’ve shown have been in the SCCM console. Are there other consoles?

No all of the operations for Nomad take place in the ConfigMgr console, we don’t require separate consoles, databases or infrastructures which would compete with the existing ConfigMgr infrastructure and potentially cause failure points (or single points of failure).

I’m wondering how you would use peer backup assistant to back-up a site with, say 100 systems, and you’re trying to rebuild them all at the same time. Do you need a dedicated system to handle the backups? ­

With Peer Backup Assistant (PBA) you need to have a strategy around how to implement it. If you wanted to backup to peers and then rebuild them all simultaneously this couldn’t be done just from a physical disk perspective. What our consultants have done is employ a strategy of having a specific subset of systems to be eligible at different times to serve as the PBA hosts. Systems can have this functionality turned on or off via registry settings very easily.­

So [is PBA] like a leap-frog strategy. Build 50 and let them backup to the other 50, then build the other 50?

­­Additionally PBA can send data to a CIFS/NFS share; it doesn’t only need to be a peer system. Therefore if you wanted to completely remove the data from 100% of the systems you could always have them backup to a NAS device or, for example, a DFS share. We would suggest you did that as part of your migration strategy. We do also plan on automating this more for our customers in the future.

How do you get the WIM and other packages to be in the peer cache in a remote branch office ahead of time so it is ready for a build?­

We have a process which integrates into the task sequence engine. Just by setting a simple variable, you can pre-cache any content via Nomad automatically using the same targeting methods you would use today within SCCM. If you’re interested we could schedule a follow-up session with a Solutions Engineer to demonstrate this and other Nomad functionality.

Session 2

Are the Nomad reports available as SCCM 2007 web reports also? We have hundreds of existing packages. Do you have a process for automating the update of these packages to enable them for use with Nomad?

Yes these reports exist for SCCM 2007. For Package conversion to use Nomad we have a simple utility that can automatically switch over your existing Packages to use Nomad as well as automatically set any newly created Packages to use Nomad, we just didn’t demo that in this session.

Are you able to restart the machine using the remote tools and have it boot from PXE anywhere? ­

­Yes – you could remote in, resolve the issue and then restart it so that the system could PXE boot off of a peer using PXE Everywhere and perform a successful migration­

I currently have that configured, however, after the initial boot, the remote “service” is not available after the OS is loaded. Should I just add another command to start that as an action after every restart in the TS­?

That could be due to several things such as boot image configuration or even the RDP port being blocked on your network. Without knowing more details it’s hard to give a concrete answer however the process needs to be running in order to connect to it and it is not persistent between reboots. This is something you would need to configure. The exe is in %windir%\system32\RemoteRecovery.exe. It can be launch manually (use the –nomessage to skip the pop up) or put in a Run Command Line step with the following command line (but don’t copy and paste due to special characters – like quotes and dashes):

Cmd /c “star %windir%\system32\RemoteRecovery.exe –nomessage”

Is there a list of features that is not available for ConfigMgr2007­? Does Nomad use BITS to copy data to the respective CACHE?

Nomad doesn’t use BITS to copy content to the cache, instead Nomad uses an advanced bandwidth algorithm called Reverse QoS and this is combined with its peer distribution methods for reducing servers. We’ve written an article explaining how we work out bandwidth. In regards to how we do our content transfer, we can be set up to use SMB or HTTP. Nomad also has advanced multicast capabilities which you can leverage and it does this all without requiring any system level kernel drivers which could potentially bring down your network. The great thing about the Nomad bandwidth throttling algorithm is that because we aren’t using drivers to create packets which look at router table properties, we then do not have any network hardware requirements and can actually look at the full end to end bandwidth rather than just a piece of the network.

[From a cool SMS Guy]:

Very helpful thank for inviting me

You’re welcome 🙂

We hope you’ve all taken away some valuable information and we’ll be holding more webinars soon. Watch this space.

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Dave Fuller
Dave joined 1E in 1999 when it was just a handful of consultants. Specializing in enterprise desktop management, Dave worked on some of the largest global SMS and SCCM implementation projects. As 1E started to develop software, Dave was involved in the design, testing, documentation, selling and implementation of the 1E product portfolio. With a passion for learning and educating others, Dave created and delivered several training courses throughout his early 1E career and in 2012 he took the initiative to set up a brand new 1E Training practice that has seen hundreds of people from over 20 countries trained and certified on 1E software. Dave now works in the Product Marketing team at 1E, leading our Windows 10 technical team to make Windows 10 migration easy for the enterprise.