If you need additional provisioning functionality not provided with Microsoft Provisioning System, you can create custom providers and namespaces to address those provisioning requirements. You have the following options:
Implementing custom providers and their namespaces
If your provisioning requirements include functionality that is not supported by the standard providers included with Microsoft Provisioning Framework (MPF), you can implement your own or other custom providers for MPF. You can write custom providers in Microsoft Visual C++, Microsoft Visual Basic, or another language.
For MPF to recognize a custom provider and its procedures, you must create a corresponding namespace XML file and register it in the configuration database. The configuration database contains both namespace definitions for providers and run-time parameters for provisioning components. The Microsoft Provisioning Framework Software Development Kit (SDK) and its documentation support the development of a custom provider and the associated namespace using one of the following methods:
Visual C++ and Visual Basic automatically generate a namespace file called ProjectName.xml that can be added to MPF.
To develop a custom provider for MPF on a platform other than Visual C++ or Visual Basic, you must first create a COM+ object that defines and implements the interfaces and procedures required to run the provider in MPF. You can use the format described in the Microsoft Provisioning Framework SDK to manually create a namespace file for the provider.
After you create and test the XML of the namespace file, you must register it in the configuration database in order for MPF to recognize it.. Registration is automatic when you use Provisioning Manager to import the namespace. You can also use ProvNamespace.exe to register a namespace from the command line.
Implementing other custom namespaces
Not all namespaces require a provider. Some namespaces provide the business logic that is necessary to invoke the lower-level procedures that are required to communicate with a provider. To create this type of namespace, you use the same method you use to create a provider namespace; that is, you create a namespace XML file and register it in the configuration database.
The custom namespaces you implement can be either new namespaces or modifications of existing namespaces. Some MPF namespaces are read-only namespaces and cannot be modified. Read-only namespaces, which are indicated by the red highlighting for the namespace in the console tree, are critical to the operation of MPF.
Only registered namespaces are valid. After creating a custom namespace, use the provnamespace command-line utility to register the namespace in Provisioning Manager. If you modify an existing namespace, you must remove the old namespace. You must import the modified namespace in order to register it.
For more information about modifying and adding namespaces, see Developing and implementing custom namespaces.
The Microsoft Provisioning Framework Software Development Kit (SDK) contains additional resources to help you develop providers and namespaces. For more information on the SDK and how to use it, see Microsoft Provisioning Framework SDK and documentation.