Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Common mistakes during ConfigMgr installation

During my daily work I do a lot of ConfigMgr installations. Because every installation is different (because the design and infrastructure is different) it's still fun to do! Most of times all go well, but there are sometimes a few challenges to pass. In this blogpost I will mention some common mistakes and how to solve them.
First of all, make sure preperation is done well! An installation isn't that hard, but both ConfigMgr and SQL needs a good preperation. You can find other posts about prerequisites HERE and HERE. It depends also if ConfigMgr and SQL are installed on the same server or different servers. And it depends if a SQL default instance or named instance is used, if SQL clustering is used, and so on.
Common mistakes I experienced last months are: 
  1. ConfigMgr Setup requires that the site server computer has administrative rights on the SQL Server and management point computers. SQL Sysadmin permissions are needed also. Just make sure that the needed permissions are in place. More information about possible issues can be found HERE.
  2. Make sure that McAfee Access Protection is not active during ConfigMgr Setup, because boot images won't be created or updated. More about that HERE and HERE.
  3. When the Windows Firewall is active on the ConfigMgr and/or SQL server, access must be configured as soon as possible. More about that on "Configure the Windows Firewall to Allow SQL Server Access" (MSDN).
  4. When using a SQL named instance instead of a default instance, (all) dynamic ports must be removed. This because dynamic ports are not supported in ConfigMgr. Open SQL Server Configuration Manager for that and change the (used) dynamic port to a TCP fixed port.
  5. As long as boundaries in ConfigMgr are not added to a boundary group, they won't be active. Systems must be part of boundaries to manage them. Best choice for boundaries is to use IP-ranges, and not IP-subnets.
  6. When User Account Control (UAC) is active on the ConfigMgr and/or SQL server, things will go wrong during Setup. This because needed permissions are not there, and will mess up all. A good example for this is WSUS (no synchronization possible) and Reporting Services (no ConfigMgr user roles available).
  7. IE ESC for admins is a bad thing also. Just disable the setting quickly in Server Manager.
  8. When installing Reporting Services for ConfigMgr integration, it's possible that no reports shows up in the ConfigMgr console. This because a domain user (as recommended) is used, and no additional permissions are set on that account. More about that can be found HERE.
  9. When installing a Distribution Point (DP) during ConfigMgr installation, it will be placed on the disk with the most free diskspace. When you install it afterwards a selection of disks can be choosed. Even better is to place a NO_SMS_ON_DRIVE.SMS file on all drives where you don't want a DP. They will be excluded next time.
  10. And last for now is the SQL Server Browser service. This is disabled by default. When the error "The server was not found or was not accessible. Verify that the instance name is correct and that SQL server is configured." is displayed during installation, just start the service to make it functional again.

Just use ConfigMgr logfiles and event viewer a lot during troubleshooting. Most information can be found there. That's all for now, hope you found something useful in this blogpost.

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