Inventory, Workstation Management, Software Deployment Tool


Identification and implementation of a new Inventory, Workstation Management, and Software Deployment Tool

Requesting Department
Info Tech Services Dir Office

Primary Customers
IT Support Staff

Steve Darnall
Marvin Sorensen
Cade Webb
Breck Robinson
David Peters

Project status
Gradient Closed

Status Update

8/17/2012: UPD and other areas not in the original project have been removed - there is still significant work to be done by other teams before the UPD computers can be added to, a requirement for the machines to be added to the managed OUs. This project is therefore now closed.

7/17/2012:  Secunia security patches for Adobe products and Java are being deployed through SCCM. The team is still ironing out the details for inventory reporting, which is not part of this project, but we are looking at how reporting can be linked to Sharepoint. The original project scope did not include UPD systems, but we are including their workstations in the managed environment. Access will be limited to techs approved by Chief Soderberg. We are also extending the scope to include campus-owned wireless devices with Windows operating systems. Due to these scope changes, the project completion date has moved out to 8/20/12.

6/26/2012: Microsoft Updates are being deployed. The new interdisciplinary lab machines and some of the specialized lab images will not be deployed before the end of this project but as machines are added and updated, they will be managed through SCCM.  The other labs and office workstations are still on schedule to be added to the managed organizational units. The SCCM team is now working on report tools and formatting. 

5/21/2012: Contracted training of the SCCM team was completed on 4/27/12 and the moving of production computers into the managed environment resumed on 5/17/2012. The OSD tools have been tested, processes improved and documentation updated on eight unique office computer builds and one lab build. Secunia-detected vulnerabilities have been patched on the pilot machines and Microsoft Update collections have been built as follows:

  • MU-Ground 0 collections will contain patches for immediate release
  • MU-Two-day collections will contain patches for release after a 2-day delay
  • MU-One-week collections will contain patches for release after a 1-week delay
  • MU-All collections will contain patches for release after a 2-week delay.

Urgent security updates will be implemented immediately to all collections.

4/24/2012: Three pilot SCCM production cycles have been completed, and the third party apps have been installed and are working. Training began on 4/23/12. The process for adding workstations to the managed environment has been ironed out, but the workstation install process uses an xml file which may conflict with clients that have .xml editing configured; the deployment schedule will need to accommodate desktop support detecting and resolving this conflict. We have also determined the process for client install and configuration on computers with Deep Freeze installed. The remaining labs will be moved into the managed environment after the end of the semester to avoid any impact on finals.

3/27/2012: The development environment has been created and is now in the final stages of testing. SCCM is installed on the server, clients have been installed, and network settings have been prepped. SCCM has also been installed on the production server, and we will be implementing a 20-user pilot on 3/29/2012. In parallel with this work, we are updating the structure and security of the campus Active Directory.

2/27/2012: Matt Tinney of Windows Management Experts will be here 9am on 3/5/12. He has been provided with a key personnel list regarding the project and the questionaire he uses in the design phase has been published through Google Docs.

1/27/2012: Specs for the development and testing environment have been discussed with the contractor. His on-site start date has been moved out to 3/5/12, but we are still on schedule to meet the go live date of 6/15/12. However, Microsoft now says that the release date of SCCM  2012 could be as late as 6/30/12, so we may install SCCM 2007 instead of the release candidate for SCCM 2012.

12/20/2011: The contract has been approved and sent to our preferred consultants, Windows Management Experts (WME). Matt Tinney of WME will start gathering more information about our structure the week of 1/16/12; his first day on site is scheduled for 1/23/12. Matt will use VMH 207 as his office; we will set up a workstation for him and contact him regarding server requirements during the first two weeks of January.

11/28/2011: It has been determined that the solution best fitting Humboldt State's goals is Microsoft's SCCM. The team met with interested ITS parties to update them on the process and get input regarding adopting SCCM 2012 or SCCM 2007. There was consensus that it would be best to implement SCCM 2012. While it was acknowledged that there may be bugs with a new release, the team felt that the project timing would allow for updates and patches. It was also determined that we would need to hire consultants to help with design, testing and final implementation of the desktop management piece. We have located consultants with experience in, and recommendations from, universities that had implemented SCCM and have solicited proposals. After follow-up conversations about our IT structure and expectations of SCCM, we identified our preferred consultant, who was also the most thorough in assessing our business needs and also proposed the most complete solution within our budget. We are now working with the Procurement Office to develop an appropriate contract covering that proposal.

10/25/2011: Price quotes received from Altiris and Kace. NC State has responded positively regarding their use of SCCM. Their study for assessing management systems included survey results for 2010, in which the majority of respondents favored SCCM. Fullerton and Chico are using SCCM, Northridge has plans to move to SCCM during Summer 2012. I have contacted two consultants regarding hiring out assistance with the installation, configuration and training; I expect to receive cost estimates by 11/1/11. I have email messages in with our Microsoft contact. At this time, it looks like SCCM will be our choice of tools for management. We will keep Ghost; but will also implement Microsoft Deployment Tools (MDT).

9/19/2011: With the consolidation of IT on campus, there are higher priority tasks than assessing/changing ticketing systems; so we have removed the ticketing system from the scope of this project.

9/14/2011: Security specifications for Kace and Altiris solutions requested and received. An update of the Altiris suite on campus has been scheduled.

09/08/2011: Symantec/Altiris demonstrated their solution to the following group: Bethany Rizzardi, Chris Hansen, David Pearson, Jeanne Wielgus, John Adorador, Josh Callahan, Mark Hendricks, Mary Ann McCulloch, Mason Long, Steve Darnall.

09/07/2011: Dell/Kace demonstrated their solution to the following group: A. Cade Webb, Bethany Rizzardi, Breck Robinson, Chris Hansen, David Pearson, Jeanne Wielgus, John Adorador, Josh Callahan, Mark Hendricks, Marvin Sorensen, Mary Ann McCulloch, Mason Long, Steve Darnall.

08/26/2011: Decision made to focus on the three leading management solution providers. Dell/Kace and Symantec/Altiris will be evaluated in addition to Microsoft/SCCM.

07/22/2011: SCCM (Microsoft's management solution) was selected as the first candidate to evaluate because of the CSU-Microsoft contract. The software has been installed on a development server.

Project Documents
04-28-11 to 08-10-12

Project Documents

View ITS Department Project Master List