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Release Notes for System Center Essentials 2010

Updated: July 26, 2010

Applies To: System Center Essentials 2010

The following release notes describe important information and known issues in Microsoft System Center Essentials 2010.

Copyright

This document is provided "as-is". Information and views expressed in this document, including URL and other Internet Web site references, may change without notice. You bear the risk of using it.

Some examples depicted herein are provided for illustration only and are fictitious.  No real association or connection is intended or should be inferred.

This document does not provide you with any legal rights to any intellectual property in any Microsoft product. You may copy and use this document for your internal, reference purposes. You may modify this document for your internal, reference purposes.

© 2010 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Microsoft, Active Directory, Excel, Hyper-V, SharePoint, SQL Server, Windows, Windows PowerShell, Windows Server, and Windows Vista are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies.

All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

Known Issues

Installation and Configuration

Issue: You might not be able to configure domain-based Group Policy settings by using the Configure Essentials Wizard in a computing environment where there is trust across Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) forests if you are logged on to the server with an account located in the trusted forest, and you attempt to use alternate credentials in the Configure Essentials Wizard to configure domain-based Group Policy.

Cause: Using the Configure Essentials Wizard in computing environment where there is trust across AD DS forests in combination with the use of alternate credentials has a high failure rate.

Workaround: Log on to the System Center Essentials 2010 management server with an account located in the same forest as the management server, and then start the Configure Essentials Wizard.

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Issue: After installation, the Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) and Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) database files might not be located in the Data directory that you specified during setup.

Cause: If you install System Center Essentials 2010 by using a remote instance of SQL Server and change the default SQL Server database directory, the Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) database files are not moved to the new SQL Server default directory. This does not cause a loss in functionality.

Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) always locates its database within the SQL Server default directory under the SQL Server installation directory. If you change the default database directory in SQL Server, WSUS still locates the database in the original SQL Server default database location because WSUS does not have a parameter that enables a non-default database location. This does not cause a loss in functionality.

Workaround: The VMM database files are located in the original SQL Server default directory under the SQL Server installation directory; for example, D:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10.instance3\MSSQL\Data.

The WSUS database files are located in the SQL Server default directory under the SQL Server installation directory, for example, D:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10.instance3\MSSQL\Data.

CautionCaution
If, for any reason, you decide to move the database files, ensure that you move only the .mdf and .ldf files, not the databases. The databases must stay in the same SQL Server subdirectory.

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Issue: Setup might fail if you are using a remote database server, and the Domain Name System (DNS) suffix list is located on the Essentials 2010 management server.

Cause: The remote database server name cannot be resolved if the DNS suffix list is not ordered correctly.

Workaround: Reorder the DNS suffix list on the management server so that the remote database server name is resolved.

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Issue: If you upgrade from System Center Essentials 2007 with Virtual Machine Manager (VMM), your disk space is less than the required amount of disk space for installing VMM (2.5 GB), and your VMM installation was on another server, the upgrade process continues, but VMM is not installed during the upgrade.

Cause: The upgrade process installs VMM on the same drive as Essentials 2010. If the drive has insufficient disk space, VMM is not installed.

Workaround: After upgrade is completed, free the required amount of disk space (2.5 GB) on the drive where Essentials 2010 is installed, and then add virtualization management by starting Essentials 2010 Setup through Add/Remove Programs.

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Issue: Essentials 2010 Setup might fail during prerequisite installation if the system or user locale settings are configured to use a different language than the operating system language.

Workaround:

  1. Option 1: Manually install SQL Server, following the instructions in the System Center Essentials 2010 Deployment Guide.

  2. Option 2: Modify the system and user locale settings to use the Windows operating system language.

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Issue: When you perform a remote database installation of Essentials 2010, the Setup program might time out after 105 minutes and fail with a System Center Data Access service failure.

Cause: Typically, this problem occurs because the remote instance of Microsoft SQL Server service is running under a domain user account.

Workaround: Log on to the Essentials management server, and use the Services snap-in console in the Microsoft Management Console to ensure that the System Center Data Access service (service name OMSDK) is running. If the SQL Server service is running under a domain user account, change the service to run under a local system or network service account, and then restart the Essentials 2010 Setup program.

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Issue: When you install Essentials 2010 with the Reporting feature on a computer with an instance of SQL Server that includes the underscore character (_) as a part of the name, the Reporting feature fails to install.

Cause: The underscore character (_) is not supported as a part of the SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) name.

Workaround: Rename the instance of SQL Server, removing the underscore character (_). Then try reinstalling the Essentials 2010 Reporting feature.

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Issue: When you install Essentials 2010 with the Reporting feature on a computer with an instance of SQL Server Reporting Services that is configured for SharePoint integrated mode, the Reporting feature fails to install.

Cause: Installing the Essentials 2010 Reporting feature by using an instance of SQL Server Reporting Services configured for SharePoint integrated mode is not supported.

Workaround: Identify an instance of SQL Server Reporting Services that is not configured for SharePoint integrated mode, and then reinstall the Reporting feature by using the instance of SQL Server Reporting Services that you identified.

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Issue: If Internet Information Services (IIS) was installed on the computer after the Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 was installed, you must reregister Microsoft ASP.NET 2.0 before you install Essentials 2010.

Workaround: Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Command Prompt window.

  2. At the command prompt, open the following directory: %WINDIR%\Microsoft.net\Framework\V2.0.50727.

  3. Type aspnet_regiis.exe –i to reregister ASP.NET 2.0.

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Issue: SQL Server 2008 cannot create or upgrade databases on compressed drives.

Workaround: Select an uncompressed drive on which to install the Essentials databases.

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Issue: If a user who has administrative credentials on the Essentials management server is not a SQL Server administrator, and if this user logs on to the Essentials management server to uninstall Essentials Reporting, it is not uninstalled. Additionally, the following error message is logged in the SCE_ReportingMSI.log file: "ConnectDatabase: Failed to initialize database connection. Error Code: 0x80040E4D. Additional Error Description: Login failed for user".

Workaround: Ensure that the user who uninstalls Essentials Reporting is both an administrator on the computer and has SQL Server administrative credentials.

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Issue: If a user who has local administrative credentials on the Essentials management server logs on to the Essentials management server to uninstall Essentials 2010, it is not uninstalled.

Workaround: You must be logged on as a domain user and also have local administrative credentials to uninstall Essentials 2010.

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Issue: Sometimes, the domain controller of a trusted domain fails to recognize the Essentials 2010 Managed Computers policy setting. For example, this problem occurs in the following scenario:

  1. You create domain A and child domain B with a domain functional level of Windows Server 2003.

  2. You install Essentials 2010 on a computer in domain A, and you deploy the Managed Computers policy.

  3. In domain B, link the System Center Essentials All Computers and System Center Essentials Managed Computers policies.

  4. Deploy agents to all the computers in domains A and B.

  5. Result: The domain controller in domain B does not pick up the Managed Computers policy.

Workaround: Configure local policy on the domain controller to point to the Essentials 2010 management server.

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Issue: After you run the Configure Essentials Wizard, it might take two hours or more for Group Policy to configure the Windows Firewall on computers in your domain. Depending on your site's configuration, it might take longer than that for the policy setting to replicate throughout your domain. This might lead to a delay of up to 24 hours before the firewalls of all the computers in the domain are correctly configured. If you run the Computer and Device Management Wizard to discover computers before that time, it might not successfully discover some computers because the correct policy settings are not yet applied through Group Policy.

Workaround: After you run the Configure Essentials Wizard, log on to a target computer and run the following command in the Command Prompt window to force applying the Group Policy settings:

gpupdate /force

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Issue: You cannot install Essentials 2010 on a server that has a self-signed certificate that is assigned to the default Web site.

Workaround: Remove the self-signed certificate from the default Web site before you install Essentials 2010 on the server. After the Setup program is completed, reassign the self-signed certificate to the default Web site.

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Issue: If you run the Essentials 2010 Setup program shortly after you restart, the prerequisite checker might fail when verifying whether the WinRM (Windows Remote Management) service is running.

Workaround: Wait 30 seconds, and then click Check Again to allow for time for the WinRM service to start and for the prerequisite checks to pass.

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Issue: Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) does not support uninstalling by using the Retain Data option; the Essentials 2010 uninstall process does not retain the VMM database.

Cause: The VMM product does not include support for retaining databases during the uninstall process initiated through the command line.

Workaround: Before you uninstall and then reinstall Essentials 2010, back up the VirtualManagerDB to a safe location.

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Issue: If you convert an Essentials 2010 Evaluation Edition to a purchased edition, Microsoft Software License Terms of the Evaluation Edition is not replaced by the license terms of the purchased edition in the Virtualization management host agent installation folder.

Workaround: After converting to a purchased edition of Essentials 2010, remove and then redesignate the host for virtual machines. To remove a host, in the Essentials 2010 console, click Computers. In the Computers navigation pane, click All Windows Servers, select the server you want to remove, and then click Remove Host. To designate a host, in the Essentials 2010 console, click Computers. In the Computers navigation pane, click All Windows Servers. In the Tasks pane, under Computer Group, click Designate a Host, and follow the instructions in the wizard.

Operations

Issue: Some Help links on the overview pages in Essentials 2010 might not open a Help page.

Workaround: For information not contained in Help, see the Deployment Guide for System Center Essentials 2010 (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=180738) and the Operations Guide for System Center Essentials 2010 (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=180739).

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Issue: A Problem Reports and Solutions dialog box or a Dr. Watson dialog box appears when you start the Essentials console. The dialog box reports that the event log file is full.

Cause: The event log is full, and it is set to require manual cleaning. (This is the default setting on Windows XP-based computers with the Essentials console installed).

Workaround: Change the event log setting to allow the automatic rollover of events, or clear the event log, and then start the console again.

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Issue: The Essentials management server might not submit inventory immediately after it submits Group Policy settings.

Workaround: If the Essentials management server displays Unknown as the status in the Computers pane after it submits Group Policy settings, restart the Essentials management server so that it will configure itself to correctly submit inventory.

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Issue: When you are running the Essentials console on Windows Server 2008, either on the Essentials management server or on a remote Essentials console, and you try to view a video from one of the Key Concepts and How-to Videos links in the console, the video might not open.

Workaround: Windows Media Player is part of the Desktop Experience feature in Windows Server 2008, but it might not be installed by default. You can install this feature by using Server Manager.

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Issue: Content in Essentials 2010 panes, wizards, and property pages is not displayed correctly.

Cause: If you have adjusted the font size in Windows to 120 dots per inch (DPI), text is not displayed correctly in the Essentials console.

Workaround: Change the font size to 96 DPI (the default setting) and set the screen resolution to 1024 x 768.

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Issue: When you save settings in Properties pages in Essentials 2010, the Saving...Please wait dialog box might remain in an orphaned state. This causes increased memory consumption and performance issues in Essentials.

Workaround: Start Task Manager, end the Microsoft.SystemCenter.Essentials.UI.Console.exe process, and then start the Essentials console again.

Virtualization Management

Issue: When you right-click a running virtual machine that is on a host server that is running Windows Virtual Server, a shortcut menu appears but then disappears after several seconds.

Workaround: This issue only occurs on host servers that are running Virtual Server and does not occur if the host server is running Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V enabled.

Software and Update Management

Issue: In the Updates workspace, when you view the details for a Security update, in x/y groups approved for install and x/y groups approved for uninstall, you might see that "y", the placeholder for the total number of computer groups, differs from the number of computer groups visible in the Computers workspace.

Cause: A known issue causes this calculation to be one more than expected.

Workaround: The issue will be fixed in a future release or software service pack.

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Issue: In the Updates workspace, when Updates Overview is displayed, you can start a wizard in the Tasks pane that leads you through the process of downloading catalogs and receiving updates from Microsoft partners. If the requirements of your computing environment include supplying credentials to a proxy server, the updates fail with an Error 407 Proxy authentication required.

Cause: The Partner Update Catalog Import Wizard does not support providing credentials to a proxy server.

Workaround: Use a Web browser to browse to and download the catalog, for example, by using File Transfer Protocol (FTP). Import the downloaded catalog using the Partner Update Catalog Import Wizard.

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Issue: You might not be able to create a software package that contains one or more files that are larger than 500 megabytes (MB) each.

Cause: This is caused by a known issue with the operating system when you attempt to validate large files that have been digitally signed.

Workaround: Install hotfix 888303 (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=103458).

Computer Management

Issue: After you upgrade managed computers from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008, the System Center Management service does not start on the agents for those computers.

Workaround: Delete the default value for the following registry key, and then restart the System Center Management service: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\HealthService\Parameters\SecureStorageManager

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Issue: When you disable the printer spooler service on a managed computer, inventory collection on that computer might be unintentionally disabled.

Cause: Inventory is collected through Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) queries. If the printer spooler service is not running, these WMI queries might fail.

Workaround: Do not disable the printer spooler service on managed computers.

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Issue: On computers on which you have installed an agent, you might see events in the event log with the IDs 2011 and 20012. These events are generated because the agent tries to connect to a service connection point (SCP) in Active Directory. These event IDs are created because the agent includes capabilities that are not used in this release of Essentials. The events do not affect its functionality.

Workaround: None.

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Issue: When you review the resolution steps for an alert, the steps refer to the OperationsManager database instead of the System Center Essentials database.

Cause: Many management packs are written to be used in both System Center Essentials and Operations Manager. When they refer to the database, some management packs use only the OperationsManager database name.

Workaround: When you follow steps that mention the OperationsManager database, apply the steps to the System Center Essentials database.

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Issue: Alert resolution steps might refer to the root management server (RMS) instead of the Essentials management server.

Cause: Many management packs are written for use by both Operations Manager and Essentials.

Workaround: When you follow steps that refer to the root management server, apply the steps on the Essentials management server.

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Issue: The Computer and Device Discovery Wizard does not time out when it tries to find the specified computers or devices if the discovery task is queued.

Workaround:

  1. Close the Essentials console.

  2. Restart the System Center Management service in Service Manager. To do this, click Start, click Run, type services.msc in the text box, and then click OK.

  3. Restart the System Center Data Access and System Center Management services.

  4. Start the Essentials console and run the Computer Discovery Wizard again.

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Issue: After you install an agent on a computer, the certificates might fail to install even though the installation appeared to complete successfully.

Workaround: Open SetupSCE[x].log and SCECert[x].log to check if the certificates were installed. If not, use the instructions in How to Install System Center Essentials 2010 Console on a Remote Computer for preparing a computer for Essentials console under local Group Policy, which describe how to manually install the certificates.

Reporting

Issue: When you use SQL Server Express, some reports might have a large area of white space after the report header and before the report information. When viewed on an Essentials system by using SQL Server Standard Edition, the reports display a chart.

Reports display everything but the charts correctly. Charts in the following reports are rendered as blank white space:

  • Alert Logging Latency

  • Downtime Periods

  • Most Common Alerts

  • Most Common Events

  • Performance

  • Performance Detail

  • Performance Top Instances

  • Performance Top Objects

Cause: SQL Server Express cannot display the chart control that is used in the report.

Workaround: None.

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Issue: When you run a report after installation, you might receive the following error message: "Cannot Initialize Report." The following reports, available from the Overview pages, are affected:

  • Hardware Inventory Summary

  • Software Inventory Summary

  • Group Software Deployment

  • Group Update Deployment

  • Microsoft Critical and Security Updates Status

Cause: The report is still being published to the SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS).

Workaround: Wait until the report has been published before you run the report. Reports should be available approximately one hour after the installation of Essentials 2010 is completed.

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Issue: The Essentials 2010 Daily Health Report loads without graphics.

Cause: The computer that is running the report has no Internet access.

Workaround: Ensure that the computer that runs the daily health report has Internet access.

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