Configuration Manager 2007 site hierarchies created by using multiple sites provide a means of extending and scaling Configuration Manager 2007 support across a wide variety of organizational structures. A single site is the easiest to configure and manage, but there are circumstances in which it is beneficial to create a hierarchy of Configuration Manager 2007 sites. Consider using multiple sites to support optimal data flow and ease of administration.

It is important during the design phase to consider your need for additional sites. These needs might belong to one of the following categories:

Network Performance with Clients

Slow network connectivity between the site server and some clients might indicate a need to set up and manage those clients in their own site if the group of clients is well-connected.

Number of Resources

If there are more resources than can be supported by a single site using the Configuration Manager 2007 features you have chosen, consider creating additional sites.

Site Mode Considerations

Some Configuration Manager 2007 features require that the site is configured for native mode while most only require mixed mode site operations. If you are planning on supporting Internet-based clients, you must plan for native mode sites. For more information about site modes, see Configuration Manager Site Modes.

Sites configured to operate in native mode cannot be child sites of mixed mode sites; however, mixed mode sites can report to sites operating in native mode. If the site hierarchy will contain sites operating in different site modes, the central site must be configured for native mode.

Features Required by Users

You might have groups of users that require different Configuration Manager 2007 features or client agent settings. For example, if your IT administrators need remote access to servers residing in a locked room and you want to disable the permission-required feature of the remote tools client agent for just those computers, you might assign those servers to a separate site. For more information about Configuration Manager 2007 features, see Configuration Manager 2007 Features.

International Considerations

You might need to install an international version of Configuration Manager 2007 in the same hierarchy that contains an English language or other localized version of Configuration Manager 2007. For more information about international considerations when deploying Configuration Manager 2007 sites, see Deploying Configuration Manager Sites in International and Multi-Language Environments.

Number of Sites

If a hierarchy plan becomes large, you might need to add an additional tier of primary sites to help manage and organize the large number of sites that would otherwise report to the central site.

If, in your test lab environment, the site server response in a parent site degrades to unacceptable levels, you might consider creating additional levels in the hierarchy. The main factors to consider before adding sites in the hierarchy are server performance, the number of clients per site, and administrative requirements. Remember that the more tiers you have in the hierarchy, the longer it takes for site-to-site communication information to traverse the hierarchy. For more information about Configuration Manager 2007 site-to-site communications, see Configuration Manager Site to Site Communications.

Corporate Structure

In some cases, an organization's policies can play a role in site definition. There might be multiple system administration groups within an organization that require administration of their own resources.

Active Directory Considerations

Your existing Active Directory forest or domain model might dictate the use of certain discovery methods, or you might choose to organize the hierarchy design (although single sites can span multiple domains). For more information about Configuration Manager 2007 in multiple Active Directory forests, see Configuration Manager in Multiple Active Directory Forests.

See Also