Use software inventory in System Center 2012 Configuration Manager to collect information about files that are contained on client devices in your organization. Additionally, software inventory can collect files from client devices and store these on the site server. Software inventory is collected when the Enable software inventory on clients setting is enabled in client settings.
After software inventory is enabled and the clients run a software inventory cycle, the client sends the inventory information to a management point in the client’s site. The management point then forwards the inventory information to the Configuration Manager site server, which stores the inventory information in the site database. Software inventory runs on clients according to the schedule that you specify in client settings.
You can use a number of methods to view the software inventory data that Configuration Manager collects. These include the following:
- Create queries that return devices that are
based on files you specify that are found on devices. For more
information, see Queries in Configuration
- Create query-based collections that are based
on files you specify that are found on devices. Query-based
collection memberships automatically update on a schedule. You can
use collections for a number of tasks such as software deployment.
For more information, see Collections in
- Run reports that display specific details
about files on devices in your organization. For more information,
see Reporting in
- Use Resource Explorer to examine detailed
information about the files that were inventoried and collected
from client devices. For more information, see How to Use Resource
Explorer to View Hardware Inventory in Configuration
When software inventory runs on a client device, the first inventory report returned is always a full inventory. Subsequent inventory reports contain only delta inventory information. The site server processes delta inventory information in the order in which it is received. If delta inventory information for a client is missing, the site server rejects further delta inventory information and instructs the client to run a full inventory cycle.
Configuration Manager provides limited support for dual-boot computers. Configuration Manager can discover dual-boot computers but only returns inventory information from the operating system that was active at the time of inventory.