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Hi,

I will try to shortly (as possible) describe my problem and I have a few questions...

I administer sccm in a network having <who knows how many> different offices and around 50k active clients.

The network is also NOT connected to the internet.

 

I used to have bdp's set up almost on every vlan, eventually this became unmanageable, got to over 2k bdp's making it unsupported and chocked the system as it had too many offline bdps.

Eventually after a case with a support engineer we got rid of all of those bps leaving us

With only 3 DP's sitting in our main DC.

 

Now we practically cannot distribute anything because every time we try 1 of 2 things happen:

1. Too many PC's attempt connection to the dp's eventually flooding the firewall

2. Users at remote sites get their bandwidth eaten up completely.

 

I am aware that a single DP cannot support more than 4k client and That I have to assign many more DP's

The problem is that for some ridicules security reasons (NOT negotiable) all ports are closed between different user Lans.

In addition, there are only few DC's and putting DP's in them is:

1. Not enough

2. Will still generate above 2 problems

 

I am also aware of solutions as branch cache and / or multicast but:

1. Branch - we still have XP machines and win 7 migration going pretty slow.

2. Network guy's say multicasting is still not possible on our network and will take very long time to enable support for it (?!?!)

 

Regarding the problem I mentioned above about flooding the firewall with sessions:

A little reading and testing revealed that the problem is 10 times worse when bits is used and deployment contains multiple files because of how bits works.... (Round robin between all distributed files about every second)

 

Rate limiting - we also don't know what bandwidth we have from out main dc to every site / office, plus rate limiting being global setting in cm07 doesn't help either (although we could just use gpo instead but still... we don't know the bandwidth).

 

We are thinking about turning off bits so we generate less sessions but that would mean no resume ability... and even less bandwidth control.

We also checked the option of applying QOS but network guy's said it would take them ages to implement globally so no for now

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This ends the description of current state, now I need advice \ answers.

1) Any general applicable advice?

2) Alternate content providers (Adaptiva OneSite / 1e Nomad) - I see them as probably the perfect solution for except: WAAAY too EXPENSIVE

 

Think otherwise?

Anyone uses it?

Will it solve my problems?

How hard would it be to implement / how long it will take?

Do they sell / have customer support worldwide (bonus for onsite)?

 

3) Since we do not like spending $$$ :)

And since I’m a curious guy - I always wondered how cool it would be to use torrents on our network.

Now I am beginning to see how this can actually solve my problems for wan distribution

Assuming I take the basic idea described here:

http://www.rarst.net/software/torrent-deploy-files/

 

And tweak it a little (or a lot), I have done some basic tests and have ideas how to automate/ script this...

Now the question is - how can I make it play nicely with SCCM?

 

Assuming I can write some script to initiate a BT download,

Do some stuff with the content on completion,

And deploy this with SCCM - it can cover me in the SW Distribution part.

But what about software updates - where your packages do not have a "program" for you to customize and let it find the updates in the folder uTorrent put them in?

 

If there was an easy guide how to implement a real Alternative Content Provider using the api....

Only thing I found is this:

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh948148.aspx

 

If you have a trick to edit what SCCM runs when advertising updates

Or if you have a trick to "pre-stage" client cache (download with BT, put it there, make client accept and skip download)

Those would also be nice.

 

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If you have 50k of device and only 3 DP, you have a problem. Each DP will only support 4K of device. So by my calculations you are 10 DP short.

 

IMO you should re-evaluation 3rd party solution or at bare minimum look at Branchcache.

 

You need to purchase 10 new servers just to come to a support situation with MS. If you assume that each server is 5k-7k you already have 50-70k of your 3 party solution. Even better yet you never have to worry about network port between network, you only need BITS open from the 2 DP to each LAN segment. Plus you have get PXE point at remote sites too, if needed.

 

If you are not into BDP then use secondary site and DPs on them, Again this will cost $$s, again this is a good case to support 3rd party solutions.

 

IMO don’t turn off BITS this is will allow for checkpoint restarts vs NBT which you will need to start from the begin again.

Again, IMO it does not make sense to create your own ACP for CM, why because who will support it over time, Who will update it? How long will it take you to do this vs 3rd party..

 

Keep in mind, I will not make a dine from either Adaptiva / 1e.

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As I said I'm aware about the need to set up 10+ more servers for distribution.

And I belive you about not getting a dime from 1e or adaptiva ;)

but last I checked onesite is 15$ per client (actually it was very hard finding pricing and maybe I'm wrong...)

my own acp would be fully controlled and free, but will be long to implement smoothly, using it without any sccm api coding externally would be easier :)

also one of the reasons for cconsidering bittorrent because it's alredy a very polished and tested mechanism that needs very little warping by few simple scripts.

I'm actually surprised that noone does that with sccm...

I actually heard twitter and Facebook have a torrent based system for automated content distribution on their networks.

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So $15 sound like the SRP price, since you don't know the exact price this tell me that you haven't actually evaluated either product. And therefore don't know what volume discounts are available to you.

 

It is a shame that you haven't evaluated either product, did you know that with Nomad, it has WOL option that will wake all of its peers?

 

You are defiantly wrong on the cost for you to create your own ACP, it will never be free, it will cost your time which is NOT free. This is one of my pet peeves, people like to ignore the cost of their time and maintenance over the long term.

 

Don't under estimated how long it will take to create a ACP and integrate it with CM. Based on my experience this will easily be a full time job for months.

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We currently have around 12 remote offices (workstations per office are 8-60) those get packages, Software updates through central location's single DP via WAN links. Is Branch cache recommended and reliable solution for any Windows environment and What should be the minimum number of Client computers per site to have branch cache enabled or local DPs configured?

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