Saturday, 16 July 2011

SCCM 2007 R3 – building a disaster recovery site

I was asked to come up with a DR solution for our SOE deployment system (SCCM 2007 R3) that would be capable of recovering all servers and PCs in case the central site goes down and cannot be recovered quickly.

So I first thought of MDT and WDS which should be able to reuse the images we already had. Now, with WDS, our task sequences would have to be scripted, and with MDT, recreated. So, since I wasn’t quite sure about all this and as I had some issues importing WIM images into MDT, I asked the guys at the MS SCCM forum for advice and one of them (Jannes Alink) suggested to build a copy of the main (central) SCCM and simply replicate the content to the new DR server. The idea is to build another primary SCCM site and then convert it into a child site in order to get all the stuff across from the central site and avoid rebuilding images and task sequences. Once fully replicated, the site can continue operating as a child or it can be disconnected from the central site. The important thing is that in case of a disaster it would be totally independent and fully functional primary (central) SCCM site with its own database, OS images, application and driver packages, task sequences and everything else.

So here are the steps required to build such a DR solution:

-Install all SCCM prerequisites (Roles: IIS (and WebDAV), WDS; Features: .NET framework 3.0, BITS Server Extensions, Remote Differential Compression)

-Install WSUS, if you need it

-If the new server cannot download content from the Internet, download updated components and transfer them to the new server. These components are required for a successful installation and they have to be available.

Updated components – you cannot bypass these, so if you don’t have access to the Internet, then download them somewhere else and copy over to the SCCM-to-be server.

If you do not have connectivity on the machine you are installing SCCM, run the
following command in order to download the content locally:

Insert (or attach) the SCCM installation media to a machine with Internet access and run: X:\SMSSETUP\BIN\I386\SETUP.EXE /download c:\sccmPrereq

Make sure the target folder exists prior to run the command. When complete, move these files to the new SCCM machine

-Install and configure SCCM

-Relocate the SMS databases from the default location to the data drive on your DR SQL Server - Simply detach the database and terminate the sessions, move the files, attach the database, check the properties (db owner, security etc)

-Configure boot file and server options on your DR DHCP to point to the DR SCCM server

-If you installed SCCM 2007 SP2, you may want to upgrade it to R3. The upgrade requires KB977384 to be installed.

Description of the prerequisite hotfix for System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3

-Check if WAIK has been installed

-Download and install System Center Configuration Manager 2007 Toolkit V2

-Create a new share point

-Install PXE point role

-Set up the Network Access Account as these settings will not be replicated from the central server. Go to SCCM > Site Database > Site Management > (primary)site_name > Site Settings > Client Agents > Computer Client Agent and in its properties enter the same user credentials that were used on the central server.

-Configure communication between the central server and the DR primary server, and make the DR server a child server of the central server.

Create a standard sender address on the central site and another one on the primary site to configure communication between both sites

On the primary site server, add the central site server computer account to the local site-to-site connection group SMS_SiteToSiteConnection_. Then on the central site server, add the primary site server computer account to the local site-to-site connection group SMS_SiteToSiteConnection_

On the primary site server, set the Central site as the Parent site for the new primary site.

If these sites are not configured with the options (under advanced tab in site properties):

Publish this site in Active Directory Domain Services

Require secure key exchange between sites

Then you should manually exchange the public key

That’s all you will have to do to setup site to site communication, last thing to do is to verify that the Parent (Central) site and the Child (Primary) site are communicating:

On the Central site server computer, open the Configuration Manager console and navigate to System Center Configuration Manager > Site Database > Site Management > - . In the results pane, verify that the Primary site's information is displayed.

-Under SCCM > Site Database > Site Management > Site_name > Site Settings configure:

Addresses (communication between the central and DR sites)
Boundaries (define the DR site and associate it with the DR site in AD)
Client Agents (configure agents)
Client Installation Methods (configure Client Push Installation options and accounts)
Certificates (make sure you have a valid cert under PXE node and that it's not blocked)
Discovery Methods (configure discovery methods)
Senders (configure senders)
Site Systems > \\server_name > Roles (configure roles)
Site Systems > \\server_name/share_name$ > Roles (configure roles)

-Distribute the content to the new server

-Check if there are any errors under Component Status and Site System Status at: Site Database > System Status > Site Status

I got these 2 errors:

PM,DRSCCM,SMS_MP_CONTROL_MANAGER,1016,SMS Site Component Manager failed to install this component on this site system. Solution: Review the previous status messages to determine the exact reason for the failure. SMS Site Component Manager will automatically retry the installation in 60 minutes. To force SMS Site Component Manager to immediately retry the installation, stop and restart SMS Site Component Manager using the SMS Service Manager.

PM,DRSCCM,SMS_MP_CONTROL_MANAGER,4970,SMS Site Component Manager faild to install component SMS_MP_CONTROL_MANAGER on server DRSCCM. The WebDAV server extension is either not installed or not configured properly. Solution: Make sure WebDAV is installed and enabled. Make sure there is an authoring rule that allow "All users" read access to "All content". Make sure the WebDAV settings "Allow anonymous property queries" and "Allow property queries with infinite depth" are set to "true" and "Allow Custom Properties" is set to false.

I got these errors because SMS Site Component Manager failed to install.

When you install WebDAV on your IIS 7, it will be disabled by default. When you create a new authoring rule and implement changes in WebDAV Settings as suggested in the error description above, WebDAV will still be disabled and SMS Site Component Manager will not be installed.

Go to IIS > Default Web Site > WebDav > WebDav Authoring Rules and click on Enable WebDAV in the Actions pane. Restart IISAdmin and SMS_SITE_COMPONENT_MANAGER. You may check if there are any issues here "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Configuration Manager\Logs\MPSetup.log"

For further troubleshooting (if necessary) take a look at these:
MPTroubleshooter from ConfigMgr 2007 Toolkit V2

Look for a message 1015 under System Status > Site Status > site_name Component Status > SMS_SITE_COMPONENT_MANAGER:

SMS_MP_CONTROL_MANAGER,1015,SMS Site Component Manager successfully installed this component on this site system.

The content might take some time to replicate, depending on the link bandwidth between the central and DR sites. You may check the status of each package under > Package Status > Package Status. Once the content is replicated, test the deployment at the DR site.

About the Site to Site Connection Group
How can I install SCCM 2007 sp1 in Windows Server 2008 – part 1
How can I install SCCM 2007 sp1 in Windows Server 2008 – part 2
How can I install SCCM 2007 sp1 in Windows Server 2008 – part 3
How can I install SCCM 2007 sp1 in Windows Server 2008 – part 4
(How to) import an image from SCCM to MDT 2010
How to Create Configuration Manager Site Addresses
How to Join Primary Sites into a Hierarchy
How to Manually Exchange Public Keys Between Sites
Prerequisites for Installing Configuration Manager

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