Simplifying the deployment of software from UNC shares in a distributed and dynamic environment

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over 1 year ago

ZENworks Configuration Management's Content Repository system is one of the greatest features of ZCM.  It provides and automated and fault tolerant method for delivering content to devices from the closest possible resource.

With that being said, Administrators often prefer to deliver software from a network share instead of via the content repository system.  At this point, administration gets slightly more difficult.  There may be dozens or hundreds of locations which may have different servers and the servers used in those locations may be ever changing.  Knowing how to configure ZCM so that devices will automatically select the closest share without needing to modify bundles when sites are added or changed can significantly reduce administrative overhead.

Attached Please Find 3 Different PNG Files.

  • Content_Repo_Bundle.PNG - Sample Bundle using Content-Repo that is simple and easy.
  • Multiple_UNC_Standard.PNG - Complex UNC Share Bundle with high levels of administration.
  • Multiople_UNC_Cool.PNG - Simple UNC Share Bundle with minimal overhead.

I would  recommend looking at all three pictures, prior to readin

 

The first step in the process is to use an "Environment Variable" any place the ZCM Bundle would normally reference a UNC path.   

Example: Instead of defining "\\NYC\Installs\Office365\Setup.exe" in a bundle, use "%ZCMSHARE%\Office365".  The solution to be provided will allow the managed device to automatically resolve the variable to determine the closest server whether it be "NYC", "LONDON", or "PARIS".  Also consider defining the variable to point down further in the share paths in case there are inconsistencies across locations or standards change.  This way in "NYC" the variable my resolve to \\NYC\Installs, while in LONDON it may be \\LONDON\Apps, and Paris may use \\PARIS\Source.  The key would simply be to keep the "Office365" folder consistent across deployment shares and allow for easy maintenance if the structure ever changes.

The second step in the process is 

 

 

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