After the infrastructure is in place for content management in System Center 2012 Configuration Manager, there are operations that you typically perform to ensure the most recent content files are on distribution points and available to client computers. This section provides information about managing content files on distribution points, initiating content validation, and monitoring content.
Use the following sections in this topic to help you manage typical content operations in your Configuration Manager hierarchy:
Content on Distribution Points
Accounts to Access Package Content
- Update Content
on Distribution Points
- Redistribute Content on Distribution
- Remove Content
on Distribution Points
Distribute Content on Distribution Points
You must distribute content to distribution points, before it is available to client computers. Configuration Manager stores content files in a package, and then distributes the package to the distribution point. There are several types of content that you can distribute, including application deployment types, packages, deployment packages, driver packages, operating system images, operating system installers, boot images, and task sequences. When you create a package that contains source files, such as an application deployment type or deployment package, the site on which the package is created becomes the site owner for the package content source. Configuration Manager copies the source files from the source file path that you specify for the object to the content library on the site that owns the package content source.
Use the following procedure to distribute content to distribution points.
To distribute content on distribution points
Manage Accounts to Access Package Content
Package Access Accounts enable you to set NTFS file system permissions to specify the users and user groups that can access package content on distribution points. By default, Configuration Manager grants access only to the generic access accounts Users and Administrators, but you can control access for client computers by using additional Windows accounts or groups. Mobile devices always retrieve package content anonymously; therefore, mobile devices do not use the Package Access Accounts.
By default, when Configuration Manager copies the content files in a package to a distribution point, it grants Read access to the local Users group and Full Control to the local Administrators group. The actual permissions that are required depend on the package. If you have clients in workgroups or in untrusted forests, those clients use the Network Access Account to access the package content. Ensure that the Network Access Account has permissions to the package by using the defined Package Access Accounts.
Use accounts in a domain that can access the distribution points. If you create or modify the account after the package is created, you must redistribute the package. Updating the package does not change the NTFS file system permissions on the package.
You do not have to add the Network Access Account as a Package Access Account, because membership of the Users group adds it automatically. Restricting the Package Access Account to only the Network Access Account does not prevent clients from accessing the package.
To manage access accounts
Update Content on Distribution Points
When you add new files or replace existing files with a newer version, to the source file location for the package, you can update the content files on distribution points by using the Update Distribution Points or Update Content action. The content files are copied from the source file path to the content library on the site that owns the package content source, the package version is incremented, and the distribution points are updated with only the files that have changed in the package.
|The package version for applications is always 1. When you update the content for an application deployment type, Configuration Manager creates a new content ID for the deployment type, and the package references the new content ID.|
Use the following procedure to update content on distribution points.
To update content on distribution points
Redistribute Content on Distribution Points
You can redistribute a package to copy all of the content files in the package to distribution points or distribution point groups and thereby overwrite the existing files. You typically use this operation to repair content files in the package or resend the content when the initial distribution fails. You can redistribute a package in package properties, distribution point properties, or distribution point group properties.
Use one of the following procedures to redistribute the content files in a package to distribution points.
To redistribute content from package properties
To redistribute content from distribution point properties
To redistribute content from distribution point group properties
Remove Content on Distribution Points
When you no longer require content on your distribution points, you can remove the content files on the distribution point. When the content is associated with another package that was distributed to the same distribution point, you cannot remove the content. You can remove the content in package properties, distribution point properties, or distribution point group properties. Use one of the following procedures to remove the content files from distribution points.
To remove package content files from distribution points
To remove package content from distribution point properties
To remove content from distribution point group properties
You can prestage content files for applications and package types in Configuration Manager. In the Configuration Manager console, you select the content that you need and then use the Create Prestaged Content File Wizard to create a compressed, prestaged content file that contains the files and associated metadata for the content that you selected. You can then manually import the content at a site server, secondary site, or distribution point. When you import the prestaged content file on a site server, the content files are added to the content library on the site server, and then registered in the site server database. When you import the prestaged content file on a distribution point, the content files are added to the content library on the distribution point, and a status message is sent to the site server that informs the site that the content is available on the distribution point.
|When the distribution point is located on the site server, do not enable the distribution point for prestaged content. Instead, use the procedure in How to Prestage Content to Distribution Points Located on a Site Server.|
|When the distribution point is configured as a pull-distribution point, do not enable the distribution point for prestaged content. The prestage content configuration for a distribution point overrides the pull-distribution point configuration. A pull-distribution point that is configured for prestaged content does not pull content from source distribution point and does not receive content from the site server.|
|The content library must be created on the distribution point before you can prestage content to the distribution point. Distribute content over the network at least one time before you prestage content to the distribution point.|
|When you prestage content for a package with a long package source path (for example, more than 140 characters), the Extract Content command-line tool might fail to successfully extract the content for that package to the content library.|
|For information about when to prestage content files, see the Determine Whether To Prestage Content section in the Planning for Content Management in Configuration Manager topic.|
Use the following sections to prestage content.
Step 1: Create a Prestaged Content File
Step 2: Assign the Content to Distribution Points
Step 3: Extract the Content from the Prestaged Content File
Initiate Content Validation
The content validation process verifies the integrity of content files on distribution points. You enable content validation on a schedule, or you can manually initiate content validation from the properties of distribution points and packages. When the content validation process starts, Configuration Manager verifies the content files on distribution points, and if the file hash is unexpected for the files on the distribution point, Configuration Manager creates a status message that you can review in the Monitoring workspace. For more information about configuring the content validation schedule, see the To configure the distribution point properties procedure in the Configuring Content Management in Configuration Manager topic.
Use one of the following procedures to manually initiate content validation.
To initiate content validation for all content on a distribution point
To initiate content validation for a package
The Configuration Manager console provides improved content monitoring, including the status for all package types in relation to the associated distribution points, including the content validation status for the content in the package, the status of content assigned to a specific distribution point group, the state of content assigned to a distribution point, and the status of optional features for each distribution point (Content validation, PXE, and multicast).
|Configuration Manager only monitors the content on a distribution point that is in the content library. Content stored on the distribution point in package or custom shares is not monitored.|
Content Status Monitoring
The Content Status node in the Monitoring workspace provides information about content packages. In the Configuration Manager console, you can review information such as the package name, type, how many distribution points have been targeted, the compliance rate, when the package was created, package ID, and source version. You also find information about distribution status for the package, such as the number of failures, pending distributions, installations, and so on. You can also view detailed status information for any package.
Beginning with System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager, when you view the status of a distribution in the Content Status node, you can manage distributions that remain in progress to a distribution point or that failed to successfully distribute content to a distribution point. The applicable option to either cancel or redistribute content is available when you view the deployment status message of a distribution job to a distribution point in the Asset Details pane of either the In Progress tab or Error tab of the Content Status node. Additionally, the job details display the percentage of the job that has completed when you view the details of a job on the In Progress tab, and the number of retries that remain for a job as well as how long before the next retry occurs when you view the details of a job that is available from the Error tab.
When you cancel a deployment that is not yet complete, the distribution job to transfer that content stops. The status of the deployment then updates to indicate the distribution failed and was canceled by a user action. This new status appears in the Error tab. When you redistribute content that previously failed to transfer to a distribution point, Configuration Manager immediately begins deploying that content to the distribution point again and updates the status of the deployment to reflect the ongoing state of that redeployment. When a deployment is near completion, it is possible the action to cancel that distribution will not process before the distribution to the distribution point completes. When this occurs, the action to cancel the deployment is ignored, and the status for the deployment displays as successful.
|Although you can select the option to cancel a distribution to a distribution point that is located on a site server, this has no effect. This is because the site server and the distribution point on a site server share the same single instance content store and there is no actual distribution job to cancel.|
Use the following procedures to view content status and manage distributions that remain in progress or that failed.
To monitor content status
To cancel a distribution that remains in progress
To redistribute content that failed to distribute
Distribution Point Group Status
The Distribution Point Group Status node in the Monitoring workspace provides information about distribution point groups. You can review information such as the distribution point group name, description, how many distribution points are members of the distribution point group, how many packages have been assigned to the group, distribution point group status, and compliance rate. You also find information about errors for the distribution point group, how many distributions are in progress, how many have been successfully distributed, and so on. You can also view detailed status information for the distribution point group. Use the following procedure to view distribution point group status.
To monitor distribution point group status
Distribution Point Configuration Status
The Distribution Point Configuration Status node in the Monitoring workspace provides information about the distribution point. You can review what attributes are enabled for the distribution point, such as the PXE, multicast, and content validation, and the distribution status for the distribution point. You can also view detailed status information for the distribution point.
|Distribution point configuration status is relative to the last 24 hours. If the distribution point has an error and recovers, the error status might be displayed for up to 24 hours after the distribution point recovers.|
Use the following procedure to view distribution point configuration status.