To be fixed, the ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 feature – Access content directly from DP

In ConfigMgr 2012 SP1, one of the many new OSD features is that you can now configure the task sequence to download and apply the operating system image directly from the distribution point.

Update 2013-11-13: This bug was fixed in ConfigMgr 2012 R2 (but not in ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 CU3).

This was possible in ConfigMgr 2007, removed in ConfigMgr 2012, and sort-of, added back in ConfigMgr 2012 SP1.

The new feature would have been welcome, since it would have decreased the deployment time on fast networks, but unfortunately because of a bug, it actually make things worse. Let me explain:

Change in behavior

The normal flow for a deployment is that the task sequence does the following:

  1. Formats the local drive
  2. Downloads the operating system image from the DP to the local drive
  3. Applies the operating system image from the local drive
  4. The WinPE Pass of deploying a 3 GB Windows 7 image was 16 minutes.

After enabling the new feature the flow changes to:

  1. Formats the local drive
  2. Applies the operating system image from the DP (without downloading first)
  3. Now the odd part – because of a bug, the task sequence actually downloads the wim one more time (but don't use it).
  4. With the new SP1 option enabled, the WinPE Pass of deploying a 3 GB Windows 7 image was 19 minutes (which is 3 minutes longer, and twice the network traffic).

Summary

Wait to use this feature until the bug has been fixed (it's still broken in ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 CU1).

Anyway – Enable the feature is straightforward:

  1. Configure your operating system image package to be store in a normal share in addition to the ConfigMgr 2012 content library
  2. Enable the feature in the task sequence
Configure your operating system image package
Configure the task sequence
Task manager displaying the network traffic during Apply Operating System Image

Note

If you get the below error, it just the old "hash value is not correct bug" that has been haunting ConfigMgr for years. The fix is easy, you simply need to update the distribution point(s) for operating system image package.

Failed to run the action: Apply Operating System Image
Overlapped I/O operation is in progress. (Error: 800703E5; Source: Windows)

/ Johan

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Johan Arwidmark

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Admin
Admin
8 years ago

Hi Matthew,

I got an answer from the ConfigMgr product group. This bug was fixed in ConfigMgr 2012 R2 (but not in ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 CU3). I added a note in the article.

Here is the bug confirmation on Microsoft Connect:
connect.microsoft.com/ConfigurationManagervnext/feedback/details/781845/os-wim-file-downloads-during-setup-windows-and-configmgr

Admin
Admin
8 years ago

Thanks again,The ability to configure the deployment to run from dp has been available in all 2012 versions, and requires (as you write) that all packages have a package share.The feature I'm highlighting in this post was new in SP1 and required only that the image package was configured with a package share. The bug, or the broken part as I put it, was that it downloaded the file twice, which it was not supposed to. Let me find out in what CU the double download bug was fixed…/ Johan

matthew.russo
matthew.russo
8 years ago

I'm describing the "Access content directly from the distribution point" feature that is specific to the "Apply Operating System image". Correct, that's what the above means. To only make it apply the image and not download it again, in the OSD task sequence you need to be able to change the Deployment Option to "Access content directly from a DP when needed by the running task sequence". It is greyed out. To make that option appear you need to make all other packages available to run from the DP, it is greyed out by default because the default Config Manager… Read more »

Admin
Admin
8 years ago

Hi Russo,

Thanks for your comment, but unfortantely you're not correct 🙂

I'm describing the "Access content directly from the distribution point" feature that is specific to the "Apply Operating System image" action, not the generic "Access content directly from the distribution point" option that you can enable for all packages (which works perfect).

The bug I'm describing is confirmed by the Microsoft product group for ConfigMgr 2012 SP1.

/ Johan

matthew.russo
matthew.russo
8 years ago

In relation to the issue "Wait to use this feature until the bug has been fixed (it's still broken in ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 CU1)." This isn't true, just something you missed 🙂 In your task sequence change the default Config Manager Client to one you create from definition (Config manager Client Upgrade). The package you create from definition, in the data access property select "Copy the content in this package to a package share on DP", do the same for any other package used in your task sequence. This does not apply to Applications just Packages only. Once done go… Read more »

PantsFase
PantsFase
9 years ago

Indeed; our MDT infrastructure is pumping 2500-3000 deployments a week (app only task sequences included). Thanks again, Johan.

Admin
Admin
9 years ago

Not only that package, no… It will always be staged locally (persistent).

If you really need speed you should not be deploying with ConfigMgr 2012… A typical ConfigMgr 2012 deployment is 20 – 30 minutes… Deploying the same with MDT 2012 Update 1 Lite Touch is 5 – 10 minutes.

/ Joham

PantsFase
PantsFase
9 years ago

I confirmed exactly that after asking the question; Thanks Johan. Last question, perhaps; Is it possible to "Use Toolkit Package" from the distribution point? every second counts in an environment our size. Thanks!

Stefan.

PantsFase
PantsFase
9 years ago

I confirmed exactly that after asking the question; Thanks Johan. Last question, perhaps; Is it possible to "Use Toolkit Package" from the distribution point? every second counts in an environment our size. Thanks!

Stefan.

Admin
Admin
9 years ago

For this feature, only the OS image needs to be configured this way (and distributed), to have the whole deployment work this way, every package needs to configured this way.

/ Johan

PantsFase
PantsFase
9 years ago

Can anyone confirm that each of the packages referenced by the MDT TS are required to be configured this way and that all of the content must also be 'copied' to each of the DPs?

agressiv
agressiv
9 years ago

My problem with the download locally is that it's considerably slower due to 2 factors: 1) The hash verification is extremely slow and 2) reading and writing a WIM file to the same disk is very slow. I timed it, on a 7gb WIM: Download WIM – 2:01Verify WIM – 4:52Apply WIM – 10:11Total – 17:04 -vs-Apply WIM from UNC directly – 8:40 Twice as long, almost 5 minutes to verify the WIM – that's absurd. This is a fairly high powered machine, with 2gb of cache on a raid controller. I can't imagine how slow it will be when… Read more »

gwblok
gwblok
9 years ago

Thanks, I was getting the error :

Failed to run the action: Apply Operating System Image
Overlapped I/O operation is in progress. (Error: 800703E5; Source: Windows)

Thanks for confirming what the issue was, I'm redistributing my content now, hopefully that will fix it.

Rojma
Rojma
9 years ago

Typo above. The first line from that last paragraph should be "The recommended way to access content".

Rojma
Rojma
9 years ago

Actually the "Run from DP" option is available in both RTM and SP1 of ConfigMgr 2012. You just need to copy all of the packages referenced by the Task Sequence to the package share on the DP. Once you have done that, then the option to run from DP shows up as an available option in the deployment of the Task Sequence. There is one catch though. The default ConfigMgr Client install package doesn't allow you to make any changes to the package, including copying it to the package share on the DP. To work around the issue, just create… Read more »


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