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Altiris Agent Booster

Created: 02 Jun 2008 • Updated: 03 Jul 2008 | 19 comments
Robert Lundsten's picture
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Altiris Agent Booster (former AAAIM) is a utility that enable you to quickly deploy and get Altiris Agent up and running.

Agent Booster installs (optional) and then monitors the installation process and actions. No more waiting for the agent to update configuration or send basic inventory. It's all instant in Agent Booster. Agent Booster also has the option to update collection(s) or add the computer to collection(s) on the Altiris® Notification Server.

In addition, Altiris Agent Booster also has the option to cleanup the Altiris Agent GUID.

This will save a lot of time and effort when deploying Altiris® Agent.

License: AJSL
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jjesse's picture

I am not understanding the point of this tool. Could you go into further detail why I would want to use it instead of the normal altiris agent installation

Jonathan Jesse
Director of Training
ITS Partners

Jonathan Jesse Practice Principal ITS Partners

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Robert Lundsten's picture

The Altiris Agent Booster's job is to "kick start" the Altiris Agent. The problem many customers are facing today is the amount of time it takes to get the Altiris Agent up and running after you have imaged a computer. You might want to deploy software after the image is completed or you want to get the latest patches rolled out, either way, the process takes too long time...

Let me give you an example;

A customer has set the "Update Configuration" schedule to every 2 hours and "Collection Update" to every 30 minutes. Everything in Altiris Notification Server is based on policies and collections. This means the following;

1. The Altiris Agent sends basic inventory to the server
2. The Altiris Agent checks for new policies (usually after 15 minutes after install)
3. The collections are updated (within 30 minutes)
4. The Altiris Agent get the "new" 2 hour policy (update configuration)
5. ...

At step 2, the collections must be updated in order for the client to get the new policies. After step 4, the client will not get any new policies within the next 2 HOURS.
Using the Altiris Agent Booster, it only takes 5-10% of the time to deploy and get the Altiris Agent up and running using the above settings.

Hope this clarifies things!

Kind regards,
Robert Lundsten

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luisdg's picture

Our packaging guys just took the altiris agent and subagents, packaged them into one wise package and there you have it. An all-in-one package. It also uninstalls / reinstalls the agent if already installed.

Installing this package is part of our imaging process (taking into account multiple NSs) and doesn't need to check in to the server to download and install subagnets. They're already there. :)

This is a nice "speed up" process though.

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Robert Lundsten's picture

That's a good way to do it. I also have a couple of customers that has the Altiris Agent embedded in the image and works fine as well.

However, the problem I often see is that the Update Configuration and Collection Update is set higher than default causing problem with Software Delivery and Patch Management. The subagents sometimes is a priority 2...

Thanks for the great tips!

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asaf magen's picture

can some one please explain how to use the  "AltirisAgentBooster.xml" file.
i want it to update my collection and no the default collection.

does some one have an exmple?

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Robert Lundsten's picture

Hi!

The XML file is the collection you import in NS.
This collection can then be updated more quickly with Altiris Agent Booster.

Good luck!

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jloubser's picture

Hi Robert...at the risk of sounding like a complete noob, how do I use this? I have the ASDK installed, have imported the XML, have loaded the asp and assigned rights, have updated the collection to an appropriate test one...now what? How do I make it rapidly install a client on a device that presently does not have one?

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Robert Lundsten's picture

To start using the Agent Booster you need to launch it on the computers you want to install the Altiris Agent on;
Example: AltirisAgentBooster.exe /server:server.domain.com /updatecollectionguid:{f83250c3-3964-4652-a1dc-262813df4d1e}

If you are using Altiris Deployment Server I recommend that you add the command as a task during your deployment process;
1. Distribute image
2. Run Altiris Agent Booster
3. Install applications
4. ...

Hope it helps!

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Gualaal's picture

Hi Roberto,

thank you so much for the booster, it could be help us to acelerate client installations!

we have a problem, during the update of the collections, we've receiving an error. this is the dump log:

[11/01/2010 18.58.18] Starting thread; THREADFUNC_WakeupAltirisAgent
[11/01/2010 18.58.18] Waiting for Altiris Agent process (AeXNSAgent.exe) to start...
[11/01/2010 18.58.18] Starting thread; THREADFUNC_Monitor_AltirisAgentDetails
[11/01/2010 18.58.18] Altiris Agent InstallDir: C:\Program Files\Altiris\Altiris Agent
[11/01/2010 18.58.18] Altiris Agent Version: 6.0.0.2403
[11/01/2010 18.58.18] Altiris Agent GUID: {3B9D77A4-F491-4E27-A2C3-F4A5E703B324}
[11/01/2010 18.58.21] Altiris Agent started
[11/01/2010 18.58.21] Waiting for Altiris Agent to register itself
[11/01/2010 18.58.23] Altiris Agent is now registered
[11/01/2010 18.58.23] Resetting tick count
[11/01/2010 18.58.23] Waiting for Altiris Agent to request configuration...
[11/01/2010 18.58.23] Trying to update Altiris Agent configuration
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Altiris Agent updated for the first time
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Sending Basic Inventory
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Basic Inventory sent
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Updating collection (GUID: {f83250c3-3964-4652-a1dc-262813df4d1e})...
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Opening internet session
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] ERROR: Could not update collections. Response from server: 006~ASP 0177~Server.CreateObject Failed~800401f3
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] ERROR: Could not add computer to collection. Response from server: 006~ASP 0177~Server.CreateObject Failed~800401f3
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Using HTTP
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Opening URL:
http://Altiris/Altiris/NS/Agent/AltirisAgentBooster.asp?Action=UpdateCollection&CollectionGUID={f83250c3-3964-4652-a1dc-262813df4d1e}
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Downloading file: C:\DOCUME~1\ADMUSR~1\LOCALS~1\Temp\AltirisAgentBooster.res
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Results from Altiris/Altiris/NS/Agent/AltirisAgentBooster.asp: 006~ASP 0177~Server.CreateObject Failed~800401f3
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Adding computer to collection (GUID: {f83250c3-3964-4652-a1dc-262813df4d1e})...
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Opening internet session
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Using HTTP
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Opening URL:
http://Altiris/Altiris/NS/Agent/AltirisAgentBooster.asp?Action=AddComputerToCollection&ResourceGUID={3B9D77A4-F491-4E27-A2C3-F4A5E703B324}&CollectionGUID={18a47320-f269-4934-8f1a-ba7324bcac3a}
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Downloading file: C:\DOCUME~1\ADMUSR~1\LOCALS~1\Temp\AltirisAgentBooster.res
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Results from Altiris/Altiris/NS/Agent/AltirisAgentBooster.asp: 006~ASP 0177~Server.CreateObject Failed~800401f3
[11/01/2010 18.58.27] Ending thread; THREADFUNC_WakeupAltirisAgent
[11/01/2010 18.58.29] Stopping threads and closing program...
[11/01/2010 18.58.30] Ending thread; THREADFUNC_Monitor_AltirisAgentDetail

also if I try to browse from IIS the page AltirisAgentBooster.asp I've receive this message:

006~ASP 0177~Server.CreateObject Failed~800401f3

could you help us?
thanks
Ale

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Robert Lundsten's picture

Hello Ale!

Can you make sure that the ASDK components are installed on the Altiris server? Please see readme for details...

Thanks

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Gualaal's picture

Hi,

thank you for your answer!

these are the ASDK we've installed on our NS:

Altiris ASDK Task Management Solution   1.4.108
Altiris ASDKServer 1 4 1.4.108 1.4.108

Thanks, bye
Ale

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Robert Lundsten's picture

Hi Ale!

You also need to install Notification Server COM component (Altiris_ASDK_NS_COM.msi). This should be located in the same folder structure where you installed ASDK.

Hope it helps

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Gualaal's picture

Hi, Robert.

sorry again...
I cannot found anywhere the file "Altiris_ASDK_NS_COM.msi", could you help me?

Thank you so much, bye
Ale

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KSchroeder's picture

Gualaal,
This file is extracted as part of the ASDK installation.  If you don't have it, re-run the ASDK_1_4.exe (err, whateve the file name is) and choose the NS COM checkbox during installation.

Thanks,
Kyle
Symantec Trusted Advisor

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Gualaal's picture

Hello,

thank you, I've installed NS COM correctly.

But...the problem related to the Booster is not resolved, during the update of a collection I receive now this error message:

ERROR: Could not update collections. Response from server: Method failed. Exception: Failed to construct DatabaseContext object. Connection to database failed.

I cannot understand...someone could help me?

Thank you in advance
Ale

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Robert Lundsten's picture

Hi Ale!

Just wanted to check if you sorted out the problem?
Have you migrated to Altiris 7 yet?

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toca's picture

Hi robert,

Thanks for this tools.using it even without the update collection option speeds up the process by miles..... no more sitting there clicking update config...lol

the only thing i still have to workout is which collections i should put in the xml i imported.
at first i thought maybe put in collection like
"computers requiring swd agent" ut realised that there was no need as the booster pulls subagent down very quickly.

so should it be colection like " all windows 32bit computers" "all windows computers"

do you perhaps have an example of what you normally put in.
an is their a collection i can put in that will start the patching process quicker.

once again thanks for the tool.

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Robert Lundsten's picture

Hi Toca!

No problem :) Hope it still does the job...

You can add any collection you like but normally you add collections that you need when installing the computer, like you mentioned "Computers requiring...<agentx>".
Yes, you can also add "all windows computers" but only if you have applied a policy.

Hope it helps!

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toca's picture

thank you Robert,

That does make sense...
great work.

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