The original article below suggests the use of a majority of the systemdiscovery custom data fields. For production environments, it may be best to collect only the subset needed. More information on an appropriate subset of custom data is shown at http://www.symantec.com/connect/videos/part-4-configure-intel-amt-integrating-altiris
The first article highlighted a useful custom report based on natively available data within ITMS 7.1. Additional data can be obtained to both assess the environment and assist with troubleshooting issues. The information shared in this article is helpful to those who have not yet moved to Altiris 7.1, are not gathering Full Inventory, or that want to get additional insights on the settings and capabilities of the Intel vPro Technology firmware. This article will utilize a tool from Intel called SCSDiscovery and will require a custom data class. Some of the captured data may appear duplicated to available datapoints within the Altiris CMDB. The difference is real-time data at the time the SCSDiscovery tool was run on the client.
The tool is available at http://software.intel.com/en-us/articles/download-the-latest-version-of-intel-amt-setup-and-configuration-service-scs/under the title of “System Discovery Utility”. A variety of early generations or components to the tool have existed, yet most were never posted publicly by Intel. The contents of the ZIP file include a PDF document providing more insights on what data is collected along with the SCSDiscovery.exe and associated DLL files.
The tool will detect the presence of Intel AMT whether or not the associated drivers are loaded. If the drivers are loaded, the tool will capture approximately 70 fields of data locally on the client. By default, this data is stored to the local Windows registry and an XML file in the directory where SCSDiscovery.exe was executed. For an optimal data capture across all generations of Intel Active Management Technology, the LMS service should be stopped prior to running the utility. More information and background are provided in the PDF document within tool download as mentioned above.
Custom Inventory for SCSDiscovery
Using the Altiris 7 Custom Inventory guidance provided at http://www.symantec.com/connect/articles/introduction-custom-inventory-notification-server-70, a custom data class should be created along with a VBscript to collect the data from the clients. For convenience, attached is an example VBscript developed from my own lab environment. The one datapoint I did not include was the Certificate Hashes. The NS7_Send VBscript is provided “as-is” for your reference along with an XML for the custom data class (ACU_Discovery_Data.xml).
Review the datapoints captured and determine what is needed for your environment. If you choose to utilize the custom data class file, a quick and easy method is to import as shown below. This is my approach and I invite you to validate accordingly for your environment as needed. Remember – this will add a custom data class to your Symantec CMDB which will be populated with data associated to client resource records. (I add this disclaimer as customer responses have been mixed. All agree with the end goal. Some are hesitant to add custom data.)
Sequence for Capturing Data from Client to Notification Server
On a target client with Intel Active Management Technology, run the following set of commands:
- Sc stop lms
- Scsdiscovery.exe systemdiscovery
- Sc start lms
A partial screenshot of the resulting data on a test client is shown below:
Using the sample NS7_Send.vbs file, call “cscript ns7_send.vbs” to capture this data to the registered Notification Server. Note: This will require the Altiris Inventory sub-agent to be loaded.
Once captured to the server, open the Resource Manager of the target client and change View > Inventory. Navigate to the custom inventory data class as captured for that client. Again, a partial screenshot is shown below for reference.
The data is now centrally stored on the Notification Server enabling a number of possibilities.
To help automate the process, use a TaskServer job or other means to deliver the client files, perform the steps in sequence, and so forth.
Example Custom Report
Similar to part 1 of this article series, a custom query and report can be written to provide a central view based on key datapoints. The example below queries for only a subset of the data
The example query produces a report similar to the following (which is intentionally similar to the native report shown in part 1 of this article series)
Summary of key custom data points
The custom data and report will be needed in events prior to Altiris 7.1 if the exact Intel AMT firmware and driver version are to be captured. The additional data points will prove helpful for a complete environmental assessment or when troubleshooting.
- WiredIPv4 – knowing the exact IP address of the firmware. If blank or different than an expected IP address, this indicates the firmware network interface may be unreachable.
- OSPrimaryDNSSuffix – knowing the exact network DNS suffix from the client’s perspective will help determine what remote configuration certificate needs to be acquired
There are other beneficial nuggets of data provided by the SCSDiscovery custom data which will be shared later.
The opinions expressed on this site are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or strategies of Intel Corporation or its worldwide subsidiaries
Return to Part 1
Read Part 3