Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Advanced Driver Management in ConfigMgr 2007

With ConfigMgr advanced driver management is possible for all kind of devices. Best practice for this is creating driver packages for all different devices, and put them in the Task Sequence used for deployment. With WMI queries you can decide then which driver package will be used on different types of devices.

For more information about that see my other blog: Driver management in ConfigMgr 2007

Now drivers are seperated in different driver packages, but what to do with the Drivers folder where all single drivers are placed? For all drivers imported there can be folders created, for dividing different drivers and hardware. Also specific Categories can be created for recognizing drivers and hardware by model. Do the following for that:

As you can see I've imported HP8000 drivers, which has been assigned to a new category. Press Next for importing this drivers in the ConfigMgr database.

All drivers are successfully imported in the ConfigMgr database. Now do it again for a new type device or model.

Now I've imported HP8100 drivers, which has also been assigned to a new category. Press Next again for importing this drivers in the ConfigMgr database.

This time (all) drivers will fail to import in the ConfigMgr database. Why is that? This because drivers can be already existing in the database. Default in ConfigMgr 2007 there can be only 1 instance per driver in the database!

But.. There is a hotfix available for solving that! (kb2213600)

With this hotfix drivers can be multiple times imported in different folders. So I install this hotfix in my environment, and do the same thing as before.

This time all drivers are indeed successfully imported in the ConfigMgr database. Let's have a moment now to look in the ConfigMgr console.

In the ConfigMgr console drivers are seperated now by device and hardware model. This way everyone can see to which device the drivers belongs!

When creating driver packages now, it's easy to see that the structure for driver management is the same in both Drivers and Driver packages. This way advanced driver management is created in the ConfigMgr console!

Once last thing: when deleting older drivers in the ConfigMgr console, this drivers will also be deleted from older folders from different models. To prevent this create an OLD folder, and move the old driver folders (model) beneath the OLD folder.

Also a collegue of mine (Stephan Wibier) has found that when a txt file exist in the driver source folder, this will not happen. Drivers that are the same for different models will then not deleted. This text file must exist in all folders and sub-folders then, for all drivers that are imported. This txt file has named in this example HP8000.txt for the HP8000 driver folders, and HP8100.txt for the HP8100 driver folders.

Hope you learned a lot this way about advanced driver management in ConfigMgr 2007!

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