Deploying an Inventory-Collector Package

Updated: May 31, 2012

Applies To: Windows 8, Windows 8.1

You can use the following methods to deploy an inventory-collector package to the destination computers:

  • Group Policy Software Installation. This is a feature of Active Directory® Domain Services in Windows Server®. All computers to which you deploy the package must be part of the Active Directory forest.

  • Logon script. You can use Windows® Script Host to create a logon script. Installing by using a logon script requires administrator credentials on the local computer.

  • Microsoft® System Center Configuration Manager. For information about how to use System Center Configuration Manager, see the product documentation.

  • Manual distribution. You can use a file server on the network as a software distribution point, or you can distribute removable media. User installation of an inventory-collector package requires administrator credentials on the local computer.

  1. Ensure that the computers to which you want to deploy the inventory-collector package are members of the Active Directory forest.

  2. Create a Group Policy Object (GPO) for publishing the inventory-collector package.

  3. Assign the GPO to the organizational units (OUs) that contain the set of computers.

  4. Create and publish a new software installation package by using Group Policy Software Installation.

    For information about the Group Policy Software Installation process, see Best practices for Group Policy Software Installation.

  1. Create the logon script. The following script is an example.

    Set ws = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")

    To keep the installation from running repeatedly, your script must create a marker.

    For more information about logon scripts, see Assign a Logon Script to a User in the Active Directory.

  2. Save your script in the SYSVOL\Scripts folder.

  3. Open the Active Directory Users and Computers console by clicking Start, clicking All Programs, clicking Administrative Tools, and then clicking Active Directory Users and Computers.

  4. Right-click the OU to which you intend to assign the logon script, click Properties, and then click the Group Policy tab.

  5. Click New to add a new GPO, or select an existing GPO and then click Edit.

  6. In the left pane, expand the User Configuration object, expand the Windows Setting object, and then click Scripts (Logon/Logoff).

  7. In the right pane, double-click the Logon script.

  8. Click Add.

  9. Click Browse, browse to the \\<domain>\Sysvol\Scripts folder, select your script, and then click Open.

  10. Click OK to close the Logon Properties dialog box.

  11. Close the Group Policy Management console and the Active Directory Users and Computers console.

  12. On a computer that is a member of the domain and a part of the OU, log on as an OU user.

  13. Open a Command Prompt window, and then type GPUPDATE /force to force the update of the Group Policy setting.

  14. At the command prompt, type RSOP.msc to verify your Group Policy assignment.

  15. In the left pane, expand the Computer Configuration object, expand the Windows Setting object, and then click Security Settings.

  16. Expand Account Policies, click Password Policy, and verify the assigned Group Policy setting.

  17. Close the Resultant Set of Policy console and the Command Prompt window.

  1. Verify that the computers to which you want to deploy the package are included in your Configuration Manager inventory.

  2. Create a Configuration Manager computer collection that includes the computers.

  3. Create a shared folder that contains the source image of the inventory-collector package.

  4. Create a Configuration Manager package that is based on the source image from the shared folder.

    For more information, see How to Create a Package.

  5. Specify the Configuration Manager software distribution points.

  6. Create a Configuration Manager program that includes the required commands and command-line options to deploy the inventory-collector package.

    For more information, see How to Create a Program.

  7. Create a Configuration Manager advertisement that instructs Configuration Manager clients to run the program that you specified in the previous step.

    For more information, see How to Create an Advertisement.

  1. Store your package (.msi) file in a shared folder on the network.

  2. Notify the users of the computers that require the inventory-collector package to run the .msi file. For example, you might send an email message that includes a hyperlink to the shared folder.

  1. In your inventory-collector package, specify a local output path for the log file.

  2. Burn your.msi file to removable media.

  3. Send the removable media to users of the offline computers.

  4. Instruct the users to run the .msi file and then return the generated log file. For example, the users might send the log file in an email message or place the file on a network share.