Sequential tasks loop with a reoccurring reboot task

Article:TECH23800  |  Created: 2006-10-20  |  Updated: 2008-12-30  |  Article URL
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Technical Solution


After a reboot in the Sequential task, the task reruns already completed steps and reboots again. This looping can occur indefinitely. Sequential Task loops with a reboot in the task.


Notification Server 6.0 SP3 (possibly previous versions as well)
Software Delivery Solution 6.1 SP1–SP2


When a computer is in the reboot proceeding state, all the agents stop their processing, but Task Synch Agent keeps doing its work.


The Task Synch Agent continues the loop to get the eligible tasks under Sequential task even if the Altiris Agent is stopping. This way Task Synch Agent does not stop proceeding further while reboot, and finally ends up terminating abruptly, causing failure to write status information in Synchronization.xml file. When the computer starts up again, the Task Synch Agent finds the status of the task as not yet ran which is actually completed. So it again executes the tasks which are already executed and this way the looping problem occurs.


This is fixed fully in Software Delivery Solution 6.1 SP3, current released.  If you cannot upgrade for whatever reason, but can apply a hotfix, note the following details:

The following hotifx is presented as a stand-alone hotfix, and is provided "as is". We have not pushed this through the full QA process and cannot fully validate it. The fully supported fix will be included in the next release of Software Delivery Solution 6.1 SP3.

Please find the attached ZIP file This includes the Task Synch Agent executable with the new .dll included in it, which resolves the looping issue.


Please follow the steps to upgrade the Task Synch Agent:


  1. Extract the ZIP file and copy the “TaskSynchronization.exe” into the folder \\Program Files\Altiris\Notification Server\NSCap\Bin\Win32\X86\Task Synchronization Agent.
  2. Import the Computers requiring Task Synchronization Agent Upgrade.xml by right-clicking on the node Configuration > Solutions Settings > Software Management > Software Delivery > Windows > Task Synchronization Agent Rollout.
  3. Make sure all the Computer will be in the list of  “Computers requiring Task Synchronization Agent Upgrade” (see note below).
  4. Enable the Task Synchronization Agent Upgrade policy and update client configuration.
  5. Agent will be upgrade to “6.1.1025.1005” you can verify the same form the registry location “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Altiris\Altiris Agent\Plugin Objects\Agents\Task Synchronization\Product Version”

Note: The collection definition will define a set of computers that do not have the new synch agent. If the "Task Synchronization Agent Upgrade" task is already enabled, the customer will need to define a schedule when it should be run again. They will not be able to use the Run once ASAP option if is has already been used before. This is because the Task Synchronization Agent Upgrade item GUID has not changed. The SWD Agent will not run a Run Once task again, unless its item GUID changes.

Additional details

When the computer is in reboot state and Altiris Agent is stopping, save information in Synchronization.xml file and stop the Task Synch Agent from proceeding further, this will cause the task synch agent to stop gracefully.


After executing each program under a Sequential task, Task Synch Agent checks for the “after run action” of the task executed. If the task is going to reboot or logoff the computer then synch agent will save status information in Synchronization.xml file and stop further processing. It will start processing after reboot of the machine is complete.

Please note that if you repair or install any SWD version (e.g. SP2), it will revert to the older version of the Synchronization agent, and you will need to complete the steps described in this article again. This is only until the release of SP3 where the fix will be included.

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