Microsoft

System Center Configuration Manager Feedback

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How can we improve Configuration Manager?

Grant end user more flexibility to manage execution of required deployments (“postpone required deployments”)

It would be great to be able to allow user to manage even deployments where software (applications, software updates …) has to be installed as “required” (mandatory) in a more flexible way.
In many cases software should be installed as soon as possible, but needn’t be installed necessarily till a specific date. Therefore, it would be great to give the user limited control when to install the software allowing him to choose a time which is most appropriate for him.
E.g. instead of forcing a user who was on vacation for two weeks to install the software when he logs on the first time after his vacation (because the deadline for software installation was during his vacation) it would be great to give him the possibility to e.g. postpone the software installation for x hours/days (as specified by the ConfigMgr administrator) to give him at least the chance to install the software at a time which is more appropriate for him.
This would also help to mitigate situations where a user is connected via an “expensive” connection (e.g. using WLAN at an airport, or LAN at a hotel, having to pay used network bandwidth). In this case the user might be able to post software installation to a time when he is back at the office again (or somewhere else where network access is cheap).
The goal is not to enable the user to avoid having to install the software at all … but providing a more user friendly way allowing him to schedule the deployment at least to a certain degree.

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  • Nectarios Gritzalis commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Indeed, this feature would be tremendously helpful and would even be more beneficial than what is already describes here.
    If the installation deadline for a "Required" deployment was "relative" to when the resource received the assignment (i.e.: scheduled to install after x hours or x days or x period"), the user and administrative experience would be significantly better.

    Here a practical scenario:
    - A collection for Office 2013 and a "Required" deployment for it is created with an fixed installation deadline of the end of the week
    - Currently, resources that are added to the Office 2013 collection during that week, based upon daily requests, will have to the end of the week before it is forced on them (although the window would be shorter for those resources added toward the end of the week, which is already demonstrating the issue).
    - However resources that are added to the collection after that installation deadline have absolutely no choice but to face this installation when their machine receives the assignment policy.
    - Sure, the installation deadline could be constantly modified, but when you have 1500 applications and their respective collections with deployments, this is not realistic.
    - Leaving the deployments as "Available" only forces the user to initiate the installation, which they often don't do, generating needless calls to the service desk asking where their application is.
    - Allowing the option for the deployment deadline to be relative to when the machine received the assignment policy would help greatly here.

    Here's another practical scenario:
    - We want to stagger a deployment of Office 2013 over a period of a few months but want each weekly group of resources assigned to be forced to install it within a week after they receive the assignment.
    - A collection for Office 2013 and a "Required" deployment for it is created with an fixed installation deadline of the end of the week
    - Currently, resources that were added to the Office 2013 collection at the start of that week, will have to the end of the week before it is forced on them, assuming they are online. If they are not, and come online later in the week, the user will have less time to schedule the installation themselves before Office 2013 is forced on them.
    - Resources not online at all that week that conect to the network following the installation deadline have absolutely no choice but to face this installation as soon as their machine receives the assignment policy.
    - To add to the problem, in order to manage such a deployment scenario, a new collection and deployment would need to be created each week during the course of the staggered rollout. More administrative work and complicated reporting ensues.
    - Sure, the new resources could be added to the existing collection and the installation deadline for the deployment could, again, be constantly modified, but that could leave resources from the first week of deployment never being forced to install the application until the final week of the Office 2013 deployment because the deadline is constantly changing.
    - Allowing the option for the deadline to be relative to when the machine received the assignment policy would, again, greatly help here, simplifying the deployment by allow us to simply add resources to the same collection each week and allowing this feature to handle deadline.

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