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Identifying Issues Pertaining to Software Installation

Updated: March 28, 2003

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Although Group Policy can successfully install software applications – especially in small- or medium-sized organizations – you need to determine if it is the best solution for your needs. Using Group Policy, assigned applications are installed or updated only when the computer is restarted or when the user logs on.

Using SMS for software deployment provides enterprise-level functionality that is not available with Group Policy-based software deployment, such as inventory-based targeting, status reporting, and scheduling. For this reason, you might use Group Policy to configure the desktop, set system security and access permissions, and use SMS to deliver software applications. This approach provides bandwidth control by scheduling application installation outside core business hours.

Your choice of tools depends on your requirements, your environment, and whether or not you need the additional functionality and security that SMS provides.

For more information about the Software Installation extension of Group Policy, see "Deploying a Managed Software Environment” in this book.

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