Upgrade to System Center Configuration Manager 1511 (Current Branch)

Recently Microsoft release System Center Configuration Manager 1511, this is not 2016 release, instead you will expect multiple releases on coming year named as System Center Configuration Manager 16XX where 16 is the year and XX is the month, for example, if Microsoft release update in February 2016 the name will be System Center Configuration 1602.

What is new in System Center Configuration Manager (Current Branch)

  • Install updates for System Center Configuration Manager from Console.
  • Service connection point replaces Microsoft Intune connector.
  • Usage data collection.
  • End of support Intel Active Management Technology (AMT) and Out of Band Management.
  • New capability for testing new versions of the Configuration Manager client.
  • Upgrade an operating system from Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 8.1 to Windows 10.
  • Windows PE Peer Cache.
  • Manage Windows as a Service in your environment.
  • Deploy Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps for devices running Windows 10 and later.
  • New modern look for Software Center.
  • Ability to Create and deploy Windows Installer-based apps to enrolled PCs that run Windows 10.
  • Ability to differentiate a Windows 10 computer that connects to Windows Update for Business (WUfB) for software update management versus the computers connected to WSUS for software update management.
  • Schedule and run the WSUS clean up task from the Configuration Manager console.
  • Improved workflow for creating configuration items in compliance settings.
  • Support for managing settings on Mac OS X devices that are enrolled in Microsoft Intune, or managed on-premises by Configuration Manager.
  • System Center Configuration Manager lets you integrate with Microsoft Passport for Work which is an alternative sign-in method that uses Active Directory, or an Azure Active Directory account to replace a password, smart card, or virtual smart card on devices running Windows 10.
  • Introduces improvements to the mobile device management experience.
  • Manage mobile devices using on-premises Configuration Manager infrastructure. All device management and management data is handled on-premises and is not part of Microsoft Intune or other cloud services.

For more information, check the below:

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/mt622084.aspx    

Upgrade Path

The good news is you can do in-place upgrade to System Center Configuration Manager (current branch) if you running:

  • System Center 2012 Configuration Manager with Service Pack 1.
  • System Center 2012 Configuration Manager with Service Pack 2.
  • System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager.
  • System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager with Service Pack 1.
  • An evaluation install of System Center Configuration Manager (In place upgrade to a fully licensed version of System Center Configuration Manager).
  • A release candidate install of System Center Configuration Manager (In place upgrade to a fully licensed version of System Center Configuration Manager).

Notes:

  • Technical Preview for System Center Configuration Manager (any version) not supported to upgrade to a fully licensed installation.
  • If you are running System Center 2012 Configuration Manager without Service Pack, you need first to install Service Pack 1 or Service Pack 2 in order to perform in-place upgrade.
  • If you are running System Center Configuration Manager 2007, you need to perform side by side migration to System Center Configuration Manager 1511.

Upgrade checklists

The following link will guide you to plan well before upgrade to System Center Configuration Manager:

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/mt627853.aspx#bkmk_checklist

Upgrade Steps

The following scenario consist of upgrade stand-alone System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager with Service Pack 2 to System Center Configuration Manager:

  1. Lunch splash.hta and click on Install.

  1. On the Before You Begin page, click Next.

  1. On the Getting Started page, choose Upgrade this Configuration Manager Site and click Next.

  1. On the Microsoft Software License Terms, check on I accept these license terms and click Next.

  1. On Prerequisite License, accept prerequisite license terms and click Next.

  1. On the Prerequisite Download, specify path where you want to download Prerequisite or use exist path if you already download Prerequisite before, and click Next.

  1. On the Server Language Selection, it will show previous configuration and you can’t change it during upgrade, click Next.

  1. On Client Language Selection, it will also show previous settings and you can’t change it, click Next.

  1. On the Usage Data, Click Next.

  1. On the Service Connection Point Setup, select Yes, let’s get connected and click Next.

  1. On the Settings Summary, click Next.

  1. On the Prerequisite Check, configure any missing Prerequisite and click Begin Install.

  1. Upgrade will now start

  1. Click Close once upgrade is complete.

System Center Configuration Manager 1511 version number is 5.00.8325.1000, to check simply open System Center Configuration Manager Console -> Administration -> Overview -> Site Configuration -> Sites -> right click on your primary site that you upgrade and go to properties to check the version as showing below:

To upgrade clients automatically you can enable Client Upgrade feature from System Center Configuration Manager Console -> Administration -> Overview -> Site Configuration -> Sites -> right click on your primary site and choose Hierarchy Settings then go to Client Upgrade tab and check Upgrade all clients in the hierarchy using production client.

Abdul Jalil Abou Alzahab

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Cumulative Update 2 for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager Service Pack 2 and System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager Service Pack 1

Microsoft released on 11/10/2015 Cumulative Update 2 for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager Service Pack 2 and System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager Service Pack 1 and solve some issues related to:

– Administrator Console
– Configuration Manager client
– Site systems
– Operating system deployment
– Software distribution and content management
– Microsoft Intune and mobile device management
– Software update management

Plus the some changes that are included in this update for Endpoint Protection, Software distribution/content management, and Microsoft Intune and mobile device management,

For more information and to download the hotfix, check the following link:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3100144?utm_content=bufferfedd3&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Abdul Jalil Abou Alzahab

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Update Rollup 8 for System Center 2012 R2 Released

Microsoft recently released Update Rollup 8 for the following System Center 2012 R2 Components:

Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 App Controller
Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Data Protection Manager
Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Operations Manager
Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Orchestrator
Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Service Manager
Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Virtual Machine Manager
Windows Azure Pack

For more details about Update Rollup 8 including Issues that are fixed, How to obtain and install and Installation instructions, check KB3096378

Abdul Jalil Abou Alzahab

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Important note about deployment of Exchange 2013 on Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS)

Based on virtualization requirements for Exchange 2013 on Microsoft TechNet which was update in May 2015, deployment on Microsoft Azure virtual machines is supported if all storage volumes used for Exchange databases and database transaction logs (including transport databases) are configured for Azure Premium Storage.

Exchange 2013 Iaas is supported if all supportability requirements are met.

For more information about Exchange 2013 virtualization requirements, check the below post from Microsoft TechNet:

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj619301(v=exchg.150).aspx

Abdul Jalil Abou Alzahab

SCVMM 2012 R2 Update Rollup 6 is available

Update Rollup 6 for System Center 2012 R2 Virtual Machine Manager is now available, some issues are fixed and some features are added to VMM:

New Features:

For more information about new features and list of issues solved by Update Roll up 6 check KB3050317

Abdul Jalil Abou Alzahab

System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager Cumulative Update 4 released

Recently Microsoft released Cumulative Update 4 for System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager to solve issues related to:

– Client
– Software distribution and application management
– Network Access Protection
– Operating System Deployment
– Administrator Console
– Site servers and site systems
– Mobile devices
– Migration
– Reporting
– Software updates

additionally CU4 include the changes to the following:

– Windows PowerShell
– Data replication
– Endpoint Protection
– Operating systems other than Windows

The new version of Configuration Manager will be 5.00.7958.1501 and the new version of Endpoint Protection will be 4.6.0305.0.

For more information about what Cumulative Update 4 fix and update, check KB3026739

Abduljalil Abolzahab

How to enable Enterprise Mode for Internet Explorer 11

Summary

Enterprise mode is a compatibility mode feature in Microsoft Internet Explorer 11 arrive as part of Windows 8.1 Update 1 and Windows 7 devices, this feature will helps to improve compatibility of website, this feature is designed for users who still use applications written and tested on older versions of Internet Explorer.

Enterprise Mode lets websites render using a modified browser configuration that’s designed to emulate Internet Explorer 8, avoiding the common compatibility problems associated with web apps written and tested on older versions of Internet Explorer. You can only add specific URLs, not Internet or Intranet Zones.

Enterprise Mode available as an update to Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 7, Windows RT, Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, and Windows Server 2012 R2.

This feature target users who stuck on older versions of Internet Explorer and can’t upgrade to latest version of Windows and Internet Explorer.

How to enable Enterprise Mode Feature?

You can enable this feature ether by local group policy, domain group policy or by registry.

The following screenshot will show you how to enable Enterprise Mode from Local Group Policy:

  1. Open Run and write gpedit.msc then press OK.

  1. Local Group Policy Editor Console will open.

  1. Navigate to Computer Configuration -> Administrative Template -> Internet Explorer -> Let users turn on and use Enterprise Mode from the tool menu

  1. Set it to Enable

  1. Optionally, specify location of your own list of websites that will be automatically loaded in Enterprise Mode.

    For more information about website lists check:
    Add multiple sites to the Enterprise Mode site list using a file and Enterprise Mode Site List Manager

  1. Close Internet explorer 11 and open it again.
  2. Go to Tools menu and click on Enterprise Mode to enable

If you want to enable this feature from Domain Group Policy:

  1. Open Group Policy Management Console.
  2. Create a new group policy or use current one.
  3. Navigate to Use the Enterprise Mode IE website list setting, and then click Enabled from the following path:

    Computer Configuration -> Administrative Template -> Internet Explorer

If you want to enable this feature from Local Registry:

  1. Open Registry Editor such as Regedit.exe
  2. For all Users navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\EnterpriseMode

    For current use navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\EnterpriseMode

  3. Optionally, Type the location for where you plan to store your Enterprise Mode site list file. For example:

     

    HTTP location: “SiteList”=http://localhost:8080/sites.xml

    Local network: “SiteList”=file://network/shares/sites.xml

    Local file: “SiteList”=file:///c:\\Users\\<user>\\Documents\\testList.xml

Abduljalil Abolzahab