Configuration Manager

Published on December 23rd, 2014 | by Christian Fosund

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1E Nomad: Single Site Download

Single site Download (SSD) is a feature in Nomad that lets you group subnets, so the master elected on the subnet will also check other subnets for the needed content.

This is great is you have a large site with  a lot of subnets with fast connections between them.

The elected Nomad Master will check with a Active Efficiency server for content hosted on other subnets, and will then download the content from peer-subnets instead of downloading over directly over the WAN from the assigned Distribution Point.

This feature came in handy on the last costumer I worked at. The customer wanted to group subnets, even if the subnets was not on the same site. The reason was that they had a server less region with 22 subnets and a DP hosted on a Azure VM . They wanted to minimize the bandwidth to the Azure VM as much as possible by make sure that the Nomad master asked one of the other sites in the region first for content.

1. Configure Single Site Download

Their are two requirements to configure Single Site Download..

1.1. Active Efficiency Server (Free)

Download:
https://supportportal.1e.com/kb/index.php?View=download&EntryID=435 (need login)

You need to install the Active Efficiency Server on a server with IIS 7 or above. ASP.NET 4.0 needs to be enabled under ISAPI and CGI restrictions section in IIS Manager.

Also WebDAV must not be enabled, but the installer will make sure of that.

 

1.2. SQL Database

For the database a minimum of SQL Server 2008 must be available, the database requires the Latin1_General_CI_AS

For more information about the installation look at the official help documents:

http://help.1e.com/display/AES18/Installation (login required)

 

3. Configure 1E Nomad Client Installation Properties

3.1 MSI Parameter PlatformURL

You need to enable SSD and specify the Platform URL in the Nomad client installer. This will make the client report back to the Active Efficiency server with content that the client is caching.

Its done by using the PLATFORMURL= and SSDENABLED= MSI parameters.
Here is an example I use from the PowerShell App Deployment Toolkit installer:

Execute-MSI -Action Install -Path “$dirFiles\NomadBranch-x64.msi” -Parameters “PIDKEY=YOUR-NOMAD-LICENCE-KEY SPECIALNETSHARE=8272 SSDENABLED=3 P2PENABLED=9 MULTICASTSUPPORT=0 STATUSMSGEVENTS=0x1000002024 PLATFORMURL=’http://YOUR.ACTIVE.EFFICIENCY.SERVER/ActiveEfficiency’ LOGPATH=C:\Windows\CCM\Logs /norestart /qn”

 

You can grab my script here:

1E Nomad 5.2.100.32 English

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it checks for x86 x64 and makes sure that the right one is installed (Requires PowerShell on the server/client) :

You would also need the PowerShell App Deployment Toolkit

3.2 Registry setting PlatformURL

You need to edit the registry on the clients if you have already deployed the client and want to add/update the Platform URL.

You could do this either by using Group Policy or Configuration Manager 2012 Compliance Settings.

My colleague Odd-Magne has an excellent guide on how to configure Compliance Settings if you have never configured Configuration Items and Baselines before.

have a look at:
http://sccmguru.wordpress.com/2014/08/06/configuration-manager-2012-compliance-baseline-to-disable-adobe-air-automatic-updates/

 

Here is an Example scripts I use to make sure that client has the correct SSD settings :

 

Configuration Items

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Baselines

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Configuration Items 1E Nomad 2012 – PlatformURL and 1E Nomad 2012 – SSDEnabled assigned is assigned to the The 1E Nomad 2012 – Enable ActiveEfficiency (SSD)baseline

 

Discovery Script SSDEnabled (PowerShell)

<#
Description: This script will check if SSD is Enabled and return a
Compliant/Non-Compliant string.
#>
$Status = (Get-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\1E\NomadBranch\').SSDEnabled
if($Status -eq 3)
{Write-Host 'Compliant'}
else
{Write-Host 'Non-Compliant'}

 

Remediation Script SSDEnabled (PowerShell)

<#
Description: This script will enabled SSD if its not enabled.
#>
Set-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\1E\NomadBranch\' -Name SSDEnabled -Value 3 –Force

 

Discovery Script PlatformURL (PowerShell)

<#
Description: This script will check if PlatformURL is set correctly and return a
Compliant/Non-Compliant string.
#>
$Status = (Get-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\1E\NomadBranch\ActiveEfficiency\').PlatformURL
if($Status -eq "http://YOUR.ACTIVE.EFFICIENCY.SERVER/ActiveEfficiency/")
{Write-Host 'Compliant'}
else
{Write-Host 'Non-Compliant'}

 

Remediation Script PlatformURL (PowerShell)

<#
Description: This script wil set the PlatformURL if not present.
#>
Set-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\1E\NomadBranch\ActiveEfficiency\' -Name PlatformURL -Value "http://YOUR.ACTIVE.EFFICIENCY.SERVER/ActiveEfficiency/" -Force

 

4. Configure Task Sequence task

You would also need to configure your task sequence step: Install and Configure Nomad in Windows PE

4.1 Check the box Enable Single Site Download

4.2 Enter in the ActiveEfficiency URL

image

 

5. Populate Active Efficiency Server

There are two example scripts from 1E that allows you to group your subnets.

the PostADSitesandSubnets.ps1 is automatic and the easiest one, it can run on as a schedule and grabs subnets and Sites from Active Directory Sites and Services.

Only use this if Sites and Services is configured properly and reflects the grouping you are looking for.

The ExampleSitesAndSubnets.ps1 scripts lets you manually group subnets, so this one is not automatic and you have to make sure to always remember to group subnets.

 

5.1 PostADSitesandSubnets.ps1

Download the Script from:

http://help.1e.com/display/AES18/Example+Active+Directory+Single+Site+Script (needs login)

Edit the script and add your ActiveEfficiency Server url on line 147.
In this example the script runs on the same server:

image

The scripts clears the ActiveEfficiency locations and populates information from Sites and Services.

You can also configure it to run as a schedule task, so the active efficiency server is automatically updated.

image

 

5.2 ExampleSitesAndSubnets.ps1

Download the Example Script from:

http://help.1e.com/display/AES18/Example+Active+Directory+Single+Site+Script (needs login)
At line 129 you can add all your sites and specify how you want to group your subnets.

image
The scripts clears the ActiveEfficiency locations and populates the sites and subnets that are specified manually in the list.

 

That’s it! That’s all there is to configure Single Site Download.

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About the Author

Christian is a senior consultant and MCT, specialized in the products System Center Configuration Manager and Microsoft Deployment Toolkit, and has been responsible for design and implementation of complex environments, spread geographically throughout the world. He’s also experienced in third party solutions like 1E Nomad that can make implementations more valuable and profitable in an efficient manner.



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