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Altiris 7.1/Windows 2012 - let's make it work...

Created: 24 Jul 2013 • Updated: 18 Sep 2013 | 7 comments
This issue has been solved. See solution.

What I want - windows 2012 to install altiris inventory and altiris server inventory subagents in the same way that 2003/2008 do, right now.

It seems the filters were written specific to 2000/2003/2008, there are no "like '%windows%'" arguments here, they just include filters.

What I've done thus far - created my own windows 2012 filter, then took that GUID and added it to the windows server collection through collectionincludecollection:

select * from CollectionIncludeCollection
where collectionguid = 'B677C36F-8CF8-4C57-AA6F-F11948E128C7'

Doing this essentially fixed most of my issues by forcing altiris to bring in 2012 servers.  Unfortunately, I'm missing something...when I check the client policy on our 2012 servers, it shows 

<Policy version="7.1.8280.0" userPolicy="" hash="1C88F9A35DBBA596FAD48F9C7B3B8C4E" name="Inventory Plug-in Install" guid="{BADABAAC-2382-4E92-90A8-F933B64BC17B}"/>

but never runs and doesn't show up in the software delivery window with ALL options checked (to include anything expired/installed).

What am I missing that doesn't allow this client on 2012 to install the Inventory agent in a normal fashion?

disclaimer - I'm aware that 2012 is not supported and an article is given as a work around to install the inventory agent and inventory server agent manually.  see my first line - I don't want a work around, I want it to work as it does with 2008. If the article states that you can go ahead and run the agent, if installed via SWD, then I should be able to get this installed with a little tweaking.  

Operating Systems:

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EMercado's picture

You could export the filter, edit the XML to include your 2012 collection in <include><collection> node, then import it back. I tested this on my dev server and it worked fine.

MichaelCiv's picture

7.5 should include support for Server 2012 and is expected to release in October...

nickthenerd's picture

I completely get that, but I'm in a situation where we are rolling out 2012 servers for the last six months.  I can't sit by and idle while we wait for 2012 to be supported.  The corporate machine continues to roll on with or without support.

That being said, my company probably won't be the first adopter of 7.5 as well.  I'm going into 7.5 as cautiously optitmistic but I have far too much on the line to NOT spend MONTHS of testing on my side before I push 7.5 wide.  It might be 6mo to a year before I can feasibly convince my leadership to roll out this version, just to be supported on 2012, not to mention linux 6.2+, which is a whole other story.

nickthenerd's picture

Alright, after testing in another environment, I can confirm these instructions allow you to use Windows 2012 in the Altiris 7.1 environment WITHOUT needing to set up a SWD job to deliver the inventory and server inventory sub-agents.

***warning: run these steps at your own risk, always test for any negative side effects in a non-production environment.  Read through all steps, then decide if you are comfortable using SQL and Chevron tool.***

1) Create a filter for windows 2012 located at filters>computer filters>windows>servers.

Clone Windows 2008.  Edit 'Copy of Windows 2008' and rename it to Windows 2012.

Now click on Filter Definition and select query mode: raw  (can't stand the builder, don't need training wheels)

Once it loads, under Parameterised Query, it should give you the raw sql - find 2008, change it to 2012, leave everything else alone and be sure to leave the '%2012%' in there.  Save.

Right click your new filter and view the properties for your new filters GUID.

2) include your windows 2012 to your Windows Servers filter in sql:

insert into CollectionIncludeCollection
values (N'B677C36F-8CF8-4C57-AA6F-F11948E128C7',
N'<new filters guid goes here>',

Replace <new filters guid goes here> with your new GUID.  Make sure you leave the tick marks on either side.

3) Open Chevron.exe (I got this tool from support, not sure where it is located currently in support forums)

manage>filters>software filters>agent and plug-in filters
Now you need to edit 'windows computer without inventory plug-in' to include 2012 servers.
Copy this GUID of said filter {E7D1D5EF-8798-4AF3-B62B-DACC1368C42F} [control+c], and it will load into the chevron tool in the viewer section.  Click 'viewer' and then click 'view xml' and it will take you to import/export page.
Look for   <itemAttributes>NoReplication, Readonly</itemAttributes> and remove the ', Readonly' part, then click save.
Now go back to the filter and reload it.  You should be able to click edit now.
Once you can edit, add another line to the raw sql to include 2012, ex.
OR LOWER(d.[OS Name]) LIKE '%2012%'
place this below the 'vista' line and click save at the bottom.
refresh the results of the filter and verify your 2012 servers are showing up in the filter (if applicable)

as an alternative - you can export this xml, edit the xml there and import it back - Altiris will warn you that this GUID already exists, click yes to overwrite.

4) Lastly, using chevron, view guid - cfdfe132-bb74-4738-ab98-81abd21a6350, like you did previously.  Click 'view xml' and it will take you to import/export.
Look for   <itemAttributes>Hidden, NoReplication, Readonly</itemAttributes> and remove the 'Hidden, ' & ', Readonly' part, then click save.
Now go back to the filter and reload it.  You should be able to click edit now.
Once you can edit, add another line to the raw sql to include 2012, ex.
Copy this line:
OR LOWER(ac.[OS Name]) LIKE '%2008%')
Then chnage the 2008 bit to 2012, like ex. below:
OR LOWER(ac.[OS Name]) LIKE '%2012%')
Now go back to your original 2008 line and remove the ) (this way it includes the 2012 for the AND operation of sql.
Click save at the bottom.
refresh the results of the filter and verify your 2012 servers are showing up in the filter (if applicable)

This particular piece is different - you can't 'see' the filter because it is hidden.  I'm not sure how to pull the xml otherwise - but I'm sure someone else knows a way to get it exported, maybe they can comment there.

Now sit back, drink for favorite beverage and watch the sub-agents install, just like 2003 and 2008.

It might look scary, but it really isn't.  Chevron probably isn't necessary, but makes life a little easier for manipulation such as this.  Go forth and dominate.

HighTower's picture

This is great!  Thanks for writing it up.

You should resubmit this as an Article and collect big Connect points.

nickthenerd's picture

I figured this would be frowned upon since it is not supported in 7.1 and I'm going in and making direct changes to their xml that should be set to 'read-only'.

Also - do you know if there is a tech article that allows folks to download Chevron?  I looked around before I submitted, but I could not find one to link.  Other than chevron tool, I have no idea how to edit a hidden filter without it.

I would probably need to spend some time with snipping tool as well to clean up some of my directions.  I just hope someone gets some use out of it, because it took a bit of work, but it is definately worth it.

nickthenerd's picture

found something else --

Last but not least - change the function inside sql to make 2012 a 'client supported OS'
In sql studio > <database name> > programmability > functions > Scalar-valued Functions
right click dbo.fnIsSupportedClientOS > modify.
find the row that says:
OR @sOSName LIKE '%2008%'
copy this row, hit ENTER, then paste and modify the year from 2008 to 2012 like so:
OR @sOSName LIKE '%2012%'
EXECUTE - this will modify your function to allow 2012 to be a supported OS.
This is needed for your upgrade functionality, like the default upgrade policies for symantec management agent, etc.