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SCCM / SMS Interview Questions

> What is SCCM ?
System Center Configuration Manager (CM12 or CM07 or ConfigMgr or Configuration Manager), formerly Systems Management Server (SMS), is a systems management software product by Microsoft for managing large groups of Windows-based computer systems. Configuration Manager provides remote control, patch management, software distribution, operating system deployment, network access protection, and hardware and software inventory.

> What is SMS provider and what it does ?
The SMS Provider is a WMI provider that allows both read and write access to the Configuration Manager 2007 site database. The SMS Provider is used by the Configuration Manager console, Resource Explorer, tools, and custom scripts used by Configuration Manager 2007 administrators to access site information stored in the site database. The SMS Provider also helps ensure that Configuration Manager 2007 object security is enforced by only returning site information that the user account running the Configuration Manager console is authorized to view.

> What is PRIMARY SITE ?
Manages clients in well-connected networks. Four main characteristics:
- The Site has access to a Microsoft SQL Server Database.
- Can administer or be administered via the Configuration Manager Console
- It can be a child of other Primary Sites and can have Child Sites of its own
- Clients can be assigned directly to the Site

> What is CENTRAL SITE ?
A Central Site is a Configuration Manager Primary Site that resides at the top of the Configuration Manager hierarchy. All Database information rolls from the child to the parent and is collected by the Central Site’s Configuration Manager Database. The Central Site can administer any site below it in the hierarchy and can send data down to those sites as well.

> What is Secondary Site?
Four Main characteristics:
- A Secondary Site does not have access to a Microsoft SQL Database
- Secondary Sites are ALWAYS a Child Site of a Primary Site and can only be administered via a Primary Site
- Secondary Sites cannot have Child Sites of their own
- Clients cannot be assigned directly to the Site

> Can you change a secondary site to a primary site?
No. A secondary site is always a secondary site. It cannot be upgraded, moved, or changed without deleting it and reinstalling it. If you delete and reinstall, you lose all secondary site data.

> How SCCM download the patches ?
You need to add the Software Update Point site role to the site, configure the software update point as active, configure the products, classifications, sync settings, etc. in the Software Update Point properties. THEN, you can go to the Update Repository node and run the Run Synchronization action from the central primary site. Once synchronization completes, you will see the metadata in the Configuration Manager console.

> Can you distribute a package to a computer without making it a member of a collection?
No. To distribute software you must have a package, a program and an advertisement. Advertisements can only be sent to collections, not to computers. If you want to distribute a package to a single computer, you must create a collection for that computer.

> Can a site have more than one default management point?
No. You can configure more than one management points in a site, but only one of those management points can be configured as the default management point to support intranet clients in the site. If you are concerned about performance, you can configure more than one management point, configure them to be part of a Network Load Balancing (NLB) cluster, and them configure the NLB cluster as the default management point.

> Can a secondary site have child sites?
No. A secondary site cannot have a primary or secondary site reporting to it. Secondary sites are always child sites to a primary site.

> Can you install the Configuration Manager client components without discovering the computer first?
Yes. Client Push Installation is the only client installation method that requires clients to be discovered first.

> Does Configuration Manager 2007 mixed mode require a public key infrastructre (PKI)?
No. Configuration Manager 2007 native mode requires a PKI, but Configuration Manager 2007 does not. PKI authentication helps provide a greater level of security, but Configuration Manager 2007 does not help you install or configure the PKI infrastructure. If you do not already have the expertise to install and configure the PKI infrastructure, you can start with mixed mode and then change to native mode later.

> Can computers show up in the Configuration Manager console before they have the Configuration Manager client installed?
Yes. If you use a discovery method, Configuration Manager can find many resources and create data discovery records (DDRs) for them, and those DDRs are stored in the database. However, you cannot use Configuration Manager features such as software distribution, software updates management, and inventory until you install the client components.

> How do you Backup SCCM Server ?
To create a scheduled backup task, expand the Site Settings node and expand the Site Maintenance node, click on Tasks.
For Manual backup - Start SMS_SITE_BACKUP service

> What are the client deployments methods ?
Client Push Installion, Software update point based installation, Group Policy Installation, Logon Script Installation, Manual Installation, Upgrade Installation(software Distribution).

> What is SUP ( Software Update Point) ?
This is required component of software updates, and after it is installed, the SUP is displayed as a site system role in the Configuration Manager console. The software update point site system role must be created on a site system server that has Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) 3.0 installed.

> What is ITMU ?
SMS 2003 Inventory Tool for Microsoft Updates.

> What are the prerequisite for Software Update Point ?
- Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) 3.0
- WSUS 3.0 Administration Console
- Windows Update Agent (WUA) 3.0
- Site server communication to the active software update point
- Network Load Balancing (NLB)
- Background Intelligent Transfer Server (BITS) 2.5
- Windows Installer

> What is SMS Provider ?
The SMS Provider is a WMI provider that allows both read and write access to the Configuration Manager 2007 site database. The SMS Provider is used by the Configuration Manager console. The SMS Provider can be installed on the site database server computer, site server computer or another server class third computer during Configuration Manager 2007 Setup. After setup has completed, the current installed location of the SMS Provider is displayed on the site properties general tab.

> Can you assign clients to a secondary site?
No.If you have a secondary site, the client must be assigned to the primary parent of the secondary site. However, Configuration Manager knows how to manage clients at the child secondary site. If there is a distribution point at the secondary site that has the content the clients need, the clients will probably get the content from the local distribution point instead of crossing the WAN link to the primary site.

> Can Configuration Manager 2007 be used to package software for distribution?
No. Configuration Manager 2007 delivers command lines to clients and can force those command lines to run with administrative rights using the Local System account. Configuration Manager 2007 command lines can be batch files, scripts, Windows Installer files with .msi extensions, executable files – any file that the operating system can run, Configuration Manager 2007 can distribute. However, Configuration Manager 2007 does not actually package any software for distribution.

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