The following sections of this topic describe the new functionality that is available in software distribution.

Branch Distribution Points

A branch distribution is intended to allow smaller or distributed offices to host a Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager 2007 distribution point on an existing client computer without requiring a secondary site to be set up. Branch distribution points provide an option for efficient package distribution to a small office with limited bandwidth.

Although a branch distribution point functions like a standard distribution point, it is not intended to replace the role of a site server or management point. Additionally, because a branch distribution point can be installed on a workstation, operating system limitations might allow fewer than 10 simultaneous client connections.

Limited Network Bandwidth

To support possible bandwidth limitations, a branch distribution point can use the Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) to limit network traffic when downloading packages. BITS enables administrators to control the transfer rates to the branch distribution point in addition to providing a checkpoint restart of a package download. If a package download is interrupted or if the connection is lost as the result of slow or unreliable network connections, the download can continue at that point rather than restarting from the beginning of the download.

In addition to providing administrators with the ability to limit network traffic usage through BITS, branch distribution points also provide an option that allows packages to be downloaded to the branch distribution point only after the package has been specifically requested by a client, allowing more efficient bandwidth management.

Wake On LAN

Wake On LAN in Configuration Manager 2007 supports the following scenarios:

  • Sending a wake-up transmission prior to the configured deadline for a software update deployment.

  • Sending a wake-up transmission prior to the configured schedule of a mandatory advertisement, which can be for software distribution or for a task sequence.

  • When software update deployments are configured for Wake On LAN, wake-up packets will be sent only to computers that require the software updates.

  • Each site must be independently configured for Wake On LAN, by using either unicast or subnet-directed broadcast as the transmission method. Wake-up packets are sent from the primary site server to computers assigned to its site.

Wake-up packet transmissions are sent only from primary site servers. You cannot configure secondary site servers or other computers acting as proxies to send wake-up packets.

Wake On LAN is not supported with Internet-based client management, and it does not support maintenance windows.

Maintenance Windows

Within Configuration Manager, maintenance windows provide administrators with a way to define a period of time that limits when changes can be made on the systems that are members of a collection. These windows restrict operating system advertisements, in addition to software update deployments and software distribution advertisements. When a maintenance window is applied to the collection, changes to the collection member systems cannot typically be made outside of this timeframe. This provides a safety net for administrators to ensure that client configuration changes occur only during periods when little or no impact to the organization will occur.

When creating an advertisement or deployment, you can set it to override the preset maintenance windows if the advertised program is critical.

Maintenance Windows are defined by collection, and when they are configured, they can be set with an effective start date, start and end times, and a set recurrence pattern. Although a window can recur on a regular basis, each window must be less than 24 hours in duration. System restarts caused by an advertised program or deployment are typically not allowed outside of this window, but this can be overridden on a per-advertisement or per-deployment basis.

See Also

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