System Center Configuration Manager: Step-by-Step – Server Preparation and Prerequisites Installation

To kick things off, I will quickly cover the prerequisites for proper server configuration and preparation.  In this guide, System Center Configuration Manager will be installed on Microsoft Windows Server 2016 running as a VMware virtual machine.  This server will need to be joined to a domain, and my domain controller is also running on Windows Server 2016.

To conform with best practices, even for this lab environment, I have configured this Primary Site Server as follows:

Compute Resources:

  • 2 vCPU
    • Hot Add not enabled
  • 16GB RAM
    • Hot Plug not enabled

Disk Layout: (I will let you determine the proper sizes for your disks, as I am demonstrating in a lab, my sizes are much smaller due to storage limitations)

  • Disk 0 – OS
    • Controller 0:0
  • Disk 1 – Data
    • Controller 1:0
    • 1024k aligned
    • 64K unit size
  • Disk 2 – SQL DB
    • Controller 1:1
    • 1024k aligned
    • 64K unit size
  • Disk 3 – User DB
    • Controller 2:0
    • 1024k aligned
    • 64K unit size
  • Disk 4 – User DB Logs
    • Controller 3:0
    • 1024k aligned
    • 64K unit size
  • Disk 5 – TempDB & Logs
    • Controller 1:2
    • 1024k aligned
    • 64K unit size
  • Disk 6 – Backups
    • Controller 1:3
    • 1024k aligned
    • 64K unit size

Prerequisites:

Active Directory Schema Extension

  • Login to your Domain Controller as a member of the Schema Admins global security group
  • Mount the SCCM installation media and run .\SMSSETUP\BIN\extadsch.exe
  • Check the results by opening the ExtADSch.log located on the root of the system drive

Create the System Management Container

  • On your Domain Controller, launch ADSI Edit
  • Expand the containers structure tree on the left, select the CN=System container, right-click and select New > Object

  • Select Container
  • Enter System Management

Set Security Permissions

  • Right-click the new CN=System Management container and select Properties

  • Select the Security tab, and add the SCCM Site Server computer account and grant it Full Control, then click Advanced

  • Select the Site Server computer account and click Edit

  • In the Applies to list, select This object and all descendant objects, then click OK, then OK again and close the ADSIEdit console

Create SCCM Domain and Service Accounts

In this lab demonstration, I have created the following Groups and Users/Service Accounts.  Feel free to create the same accounts or change at your own discretion.

  • SCCM Admins (Group)
  • SCCM Site Servers (Group)
  • SCCM Admin (User)
  • SCCM Client Push (User)
  • SCCM Join Domain (User)
  • SCCM Network Access Authority (User)
  • SCCM SQL Reporting Service (User)
  • SCCM SQL Service (User)

Network Configuration

I’ll assume this has already been done prior to joining the Site Server to the domain but just in case, please ensure that you have set a static IP address for the SCCM Site Server.

Firewall Configuration

I have created the following batch script and posted it on my GitHub here.  Ensure that your Firewall is on and run this script via an elevated command prompt or PowerShell on your Site Server.

Hidden Files

You can prevent SCCM from placing content on drives you don’t want content on.  You can do so by creating an empty file called no_sms_on_drive.sms and then place the file in the root of each drive that you want to prevent SCCM from putting content.  I choose to place this file on the root of all my drives except for the D: drive.  You can read more about hidden files here.

Roles and Features

Before you can install SCCM on your server, you will need to install the following Windows Server Roles and Features.

  • .Net Framework 3.5
  • .Net Framework 4
  • IIS
  • Remote Differential Compression (RDC)
  • BITS
  • ASP.Net

Rather than using the GUI to install these, I’ve created the following PowerShell script to install said Roles and Features.  You can find this on my GitHub as well here.

Local Administrator Accounts

Add the following groups to the Local Administrator group on the Site Server.

  • SCCM Admins (Be sure to add SCCM Admin and any other Domain User accounts you need to this group)
  • SCCM Site Servers (Be sure to add the SCCM Servers’ Computer Object account to this group)

System CLR Types for SQL Server 2014

This version is compatible with SQL Server 2017.  Download from here and install.

Report Viewer 2015 Runtime

This version is compatible with SQL Server 2017.  Download from here and install.

Windows ADK – Windows 10 (1709)

Download from here and install

Windows SDK – Windows 10 (1709)

**Optional** – I chose to install this just for the MSI Tools

Download from here and install

And that’s that!  Now you’re ready to install and configure Microsoft SQL Server.  I hope you’ve found this helpful, thanks for reading and I’ll catch you all on the next one!

 

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