SMS 2003

Hello All,

Since last 1 month Ive been studying SMS 2003. I practially tried almost all features of SMS 2003 by setting up virtual network using Virtual PC. I tried Package Deployment, Inventory Management, Remote Controlling and Metering etc etc.

This is the first time I am doing something related to system Administration. Previously I was into Software Development.

I need to manage 2500+ desktops under SMS for a s/w development company.
I will be playing with deployment of almost all Microsoft Products, Oracle, Java etc.

I just wanted to know your opinion regarding SMS and what level of complexity it reaches in live, practical environment. Have you faced any issues related to Software Metering and Inventory Management? Because I sense that it will not be as straight forward as given in books.

Also please tell me, whether SMS installer is the best software for Repackaging etc? or there are some other products available in market?

I am going ahead and diving into it. But it will be great if you guys can guide me so that I can focus better. [:)]



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Answers (7)

Posted by: Bladerun 15 years ago
Green Belt
I'm a big advocate of SMS 2003. I used it extensively at my last contract, and my current contract will be implementing it later this year, largely due to my endorsements.

There are a number of good SMS evaluation posts on the site, seach for them.

The biggest issue we faced was getting all of the clients to report once they had the client. Our environment was primarily XP, with some NT thrown in which was a good portion of the problem. The NT machine only successfully reported about 75% of the time. We also had 49 remote sites, which made it even more complex. Once we resolved that though, we had no problem using SMS to monitor license usage & inventory.

SMS Installer is a basic tool for repackaging (though I know people that use only that with great success.) Your best bet though is to look into Wise Packaging studios or Installshield Admin studios for your MSI/EXE packaging.
Posted by: il2_acer 15 years ago
Yellow Belt
Hello Sir,

I am new to SMS 2003. Can you pl. tell me the procedure to install SMS 2003 in WIndows 2003 Server. Thanks in advance
Posted by: kkaminsk 15 years ago
9th Degree Black Belt
Probably 50% or more of the clients I see cannot compentently run SMS. It is not a simple framework to install but it is incredibly powerful if you utilitize the fully. My #1 recomendation is to understand how to troubleshoot the infrastructure from the SQL server down to the client. You have to know how many clients are reporting to the site and find out why others are not working. You have to keep on top of this because too many administrators assume what is in the database is 100% correct and are blissfully unaware of what is really broken.
Posted by: Bladerun 15 years ago
Green Belt
ORIGINAL: il2_acer

Hello Sir,

I am new to SMS 2003. Can you pl. tell me the procedure to install SMS 2003 in WIndows 2003 Server. Thanks in advance

1. Actually I couldn't, I did administration and troubleshooting, the installation was performed by a different team.

2. There are novels written on this stuff. You'd be much better to either attend training or at least buy a book on it & read it cover to cover. To put it lightly, its not a simple install.
Posted by: de_bas 15 years ago
Yellow Belt
I have years of experience in software distribution, both with SMS2.0/SMS2003 and Zenworks, and I'd really like all of you to give ZenWorks a try, because I still think it is superior to anything I've seen. It can perform most tasks SMS can concerning software distribution but it is much more straightforward and less complex to use.
Posted by: revizor 15 years ago
Third Degree Blue Belt
We are SMS2003 shop, and it's functioning noticeably better then its predecessor 2.0
Having said that, its admin console drives me to the point of insanity. I don't feel it should take 15-45 minutes or so with all shoves and pushes to get the software advertisements to be picked up by a computer.
Our infrastructure is relatively small & simple, the servers slightly underutilized; however, pulling data out of SMS database is taking long time, esp. during initial connection phase. Sure, you can script tasks in SMS, but every opportunity to bypass SMS - we take it.
I've been recently piloting OSD FeaturePack for SMS 2003 for our infrastructure. I did a lot of testing and fine-tuning with it. It was irritating to have to sit in front of testboxes, clicking on "Evaluate Machine Policies" for 1/2 hour only to find out that the package failed to copy to the distribution point, or that collections didn't refresh - therefore advertisements did not propagate.
Or, worse, to leave a PC running on Friday night, only to come find out on Monday that it's still "Waiting for Content".[:@][:@][:@]

The good thing about SMS is that if you set it up, there will be plenty of other losers (like myself) stuck in the same boat, so you'll not be unique in your frustrations.

You really should be a patient person to like SMS.
Posted by: sanket 15 years ago
Yellow Belt
hi paresh,
I found SMS very useful.Its reporting tool is very powerful.
Though SMS is complex but once all set then you can explore different
things in it. I used Admin Tools Install Shield for packaging and creating msi files.
I have implimented SMS in my organisation and working on it from last 1 year.
Best luck!!
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