Sample Design Verification Plan
A design verification plan will help you proceed with logical and controlled testing of SMS. A staged design verification plan starts with the basics and builds with each successive phase. A sample plan for verifying your SMS design can include the following stages.
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Analyze basic SMS functionality in a single-server environment. This approach makes it easier to identify hardware and integration issues with other management tools. It is easier to find and fix problems in the lab than in the production environment. You can complete a significant amount of the testing with a single computer running Windows 2000 Server SP2, and a laptop and desktop computer, each running Windows 2000 Professional.
Add additional servers, site systems, and subnets to the lab in the manner planned for deployment. Then, verify the added functionality. Configure the servers and site systems as you would configure them in production, including software and network protocols. If you have trusted domains in your production environment, set up some trusted domains in the lab. Set up accounts, logon scripts and profiles, and security as you would in your production environment.
Add clients and verify basic client functionality. Try to add at least one client for each platform that is used in your production environment. For example, if your company uses clients running Windows 98, Windows NT 4.0 Workstation, and Windows 2000 Professional operating systems, add at least one of each of these clients at this stage. Install and configure the clients as they would be installed and configured in your production environment.
Create an SMS hierarchy configured in a manner similar to your proposed SMS design. For example, if you plan to use many secondary sites reporting to a single central site, create and test at least four or five secondary sites in your lab. If you plan to create a hierarchy with many levels, create and test a similar hierarchy. If you plan to use an SMS 2.0 site in the hierarchy, create and test a similar site. Be sure that the hierarchy is created and functioning properly and then verify hierarchy-related functionality and system performance. Test over all the network link types and speeds you will actually use in your production environment. If you are using WINS, DNS, DHCP, SNA Server, or RAS, test them as you would use them in production. If you plan to use Courier Sender, test it at this stage.
If the SMS site servers are not dedicated strictly to SMS, test them with the appropriate applications running on them. Ensure that they are installed with any standardized software, such as antivirus software, used throughout your organization.
Perform basic scalability and capacity testing to ensure that your site design and hardware scales to meet your current and future needs. If you can create real loads in your lab environment, do so. Otherwise, simulate expected loads so you can accurately test system performance.
Ensure that your hierarchy design is well-documented in your project plan before proceeding to the deployment phase. Include a diagram of the hierarchy, site codes, server roles, and other relevant information.
Be sure to document and verify the results of your tests against your project requirements. Rework your plan and resolve any major issues before proceeding to the deployment planning phase and pilot project.
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