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Best practices for deploying applications within a ConfigMgr 2012 Task Sequence

When you decide to install Applications during your OS Deployment using Configuration Manager, there are some caveats which must be taken into account

Applications installed during a task sequence must be installed completely silent, that means that no user interaction is allowed.

Some points of attention are:

  • Task Sequence runs in the context of the System account
  • There is no Explorer.exe running during a Task Sequence
  • Installation must be fully unattended, no user interaction is allowed
  • The installer may never initiate a reboot, it should return return code 3010 for example when a reboot is needed. ConfigMgr will then take care of the reboot when needed.

During many of my project building Task Sequences for customers I’ve build a way to test successful installation of an Application during a Task Sequence.Read More

ConfigMgr 2012: Caveat with application revisions when used in a Task Sequence – Updated

Update: Some readers of my blog still experience this issue, and up until now the exact cause is not clear. The workaround is still valid though ! Please read the comments below for the latest updates. If you also experience this issue, please up the counter on the Microsoft Connect site where this issue is reported: https://connect.microsoft.com/ConfigurationManagervnext/feedback/details/772079/task-sequence-doesnt-install-or-fails-when-application-version-is-updated

Recently I experienced some strange issues with installing applications during a task sequence, and at this time of writing there is no official fix for this issue in ConfigMgr 2012 only a workaround. It caused me a lot of question marks before i could actually figure out what the problem was.

 

So, to start let first answer the question about what the symptoms are:

When you install applications you will notice that the task sequence when executed will not install the latest application revision of that application. Instead the application revision of the Application at the time it was added to the task sequence is used, causing either the Task Sequence to fail or an earlier version of the Application ends up being installed.

 

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When looking to the References of your task sequence you will notice that it displays a reference to the latest application revision you have.

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This corresponds to the actual revision, which you can view by right clicking on the application and by choosing Revision History. As you can see here Revision 2 corresponds to the /2 behind the Application ID.
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