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Working in IT for many years, with different types and sizes of customers, I’ve run across some interesting challenges along the way.  At the same time, I’ve always tried to compare each one with a previous situation; hoping to find patterns and see if the same solutions work again.  What I’ve found along the way is that there are some issues which are very common indeed.  Each list below could obviously include many more issues, but I’m trying to narrow each to the 5 most common.

1 – SQL Server Configuration

  • Co-hosting CM database with other databases
  • Improper resource allocation (CPUs, memory, disks, network interfaces)
  • Improper index maintenance / defgrag management
  • Missing service packs and cumulative updates
  • Lack of documentation

2 – CM Server Configuration

  • Co-hosting CM on servers with other heavy-use applications or services
  • Too many roles implemented
  • Missing service packs and cumulative updates
  • Lack of documentation
  • Improper resource allocation (CPUs, memory, disks, network interfaces)

3 – Service Packs and Updates

  • Windows Servers, and Windows clients
  • SQL Server
  • System Center
  • MDT / ADK
  • Drivers

4 – Active Directory

  • Inadequate clean-up of deleted accounts
  • Sites and/or subnets improperly configured
  • Improper or excessive GPO settings
  • DNS configuration problems
  • Lack of documentation

5 – Network Address Management

  • Incomplete DHCP management
  • Overlapping subnet ranges, poor subnetting/supernetting
  • Poor management of addresses for separating servers and clients
  • Misconfigured PXE services
  • DNS registration failures

6 – Geography and Bandwidth

  • Inadequate site-to-site traffic analysis (preparation)
  • Inadequate site-to-site bandwidth configuration
  • Poorly-configured (or missing) AD site links
  • Inadequate DP provisioning
  • Inadequate site design (PXE point placements, MPs, RPs, SUPs, etc.)

7 – Updates Management

  • Improper scheduling
  • Inadequate testing process
  • Incomplete catalog
  • Excluded devices
  • Lack of OSD integration

8 – Operations

  • Inadequate staffing or inconsistent roles
  • Inadequate backups (and restoration testing)
  • No separate testing environment
  • Inadequate procedures and policies
  • Miscommunication between IT groups

9 – Culture Issues

  • Treating SCCM as a reactive tool, rather than a proactive tool
  • Office or Department politics
  • Lack of upper management support
  • Lack of transparency within IT and with customers
  • Lack of training

10 – Environment

  • Mis-configured Antivirus exclusions
  • Third-party agent conflicts
  • Faulty or non-existent power backup
  • Inadequate staffing or inconsistent roles

If I had to pick one more that didn’t fall into any single group, it would be: Ignoring log files.  The CM logs on servers and clients are THE most valuable and helpful resource you will have when things aren’t working like they should.  Look at the Windows event logs as well.  I’ve seen many situations where something in Windows was causing a cascading effect into CM and it looked like CM was the cause, initially.

What else did I miss?

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One thought on “10 Most Common SCCM 2012 Issues

  1. For SQL, I would add invalid language coallation setting chosen. It doesn’t come up as much in US only companies, but especially in the EU, you’ll have SQL Installs default to the local country culture. I’ve seen European companies with a French or German collation standard cause huge issues that you’d only notice by reading smsdbon or other boring logs.

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