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SCCM2007 - Setting a maximum amount of distributions of an advertisment

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Hi everybody,


Since I'm new on this forum I might as well take the time to introduce myself properly.

I'm 24 years old, and work as a system administrator for the local government of a small muncipality in the Netherlands.


We have recently decided to migrate all Windows XP machines to new Windows 7 machines,

and also decided it was time to part with our current means of distributing OS's and software among clients,

which basically consisted entirely of installing "one client", sysprepping it for "new" distribution, imaging it

with storage applications like Acronis True Image, and deploying said image on every computer

that needs to be distributed.


The exception to this way of distributing software has always been software that needed license activation,

and kept track of on which computer it was in fact installed and activated, and usally had a limited number

of computers it could be installed on, at any time. We would install that software by hand.


Long story short, we're right in the middle of trading in this way of working for software distribution via SCCM2007,

and later on SCCM2012. Most things are going smoothly, but the same applications, with a certain number of licenses

purchased, seem to puzzle us. We want to find a way to limit the amount of times a software advertisement (say, Adobe

Acrobat Professional X, of wich we own 20 licenses, and thus, may be installed on only 20 computers at any time) within



We could "just package" the application (although we'd still need to figure out a way to make the installation

"find the licence key on its own" so the application can actually install, rather than run into a "please enter your

license code" notification and freeze) and manually keep track of "where it's installed and how many licenses are

taken", but I was specifically asked to "find a way to make SCCM *refuse* any distributions as soon as the program

was distributed to 20 client computers", this being a safeguard to make sure any of our "underlings" don't end up

distributing the software beyond those 20 licenses anyway, getting us, as a "government", in trouble for using more licenses than we actually possess.

Basically, "we should not be able to, at any time, distribute Adobe Professional X, to more than 20 clients, at ANY time".


I'll keep my thinking cap on, but any help is most definitely appreciated!

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Firstly, there is no magic trick that can be performed by SCCM 2012, or SCCM 2007 that can achieve what you want. There is no mechanism directly in SCCM to restrict installations of a program to a set number.

Secondly, does your organisation have App-V - do you have an enterprise agreement/software assurance? That would be a better solution I think! Means you can control the users who can run the package using AD groups.


Traditional method:

Do you have a volume licensing key from Adobe? You should with that many licenses I think (although we don’t), that makes the software package much easier. Alternatively, just use a single license key from one of your packages and just MAKE SURE you don’t install any without uninstalling first (to achieve you 20 installs max).


Then use software metering rules to verify and report on the number of machines using Acrobat X.


I am sure there are more elegant ways of achieving this but you have to take into account the overhead with administering it from an ICT point of view. If your users do not have admin rights, then you control what is installed. So make sure its only on 20 machines, and then setup business processes to remember to check to uninstall from one machine when installing on another.


Adobe will not come knocking on your door for 20 licenses of Acrobat.

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I take it then that you are not the only systems admin using SCCM as if you were you could manually keep track of what has been deployed and how many off etc...


I think you could create an adobe specific computer collection with your 20 computers in it.....deploy adobe as part of a individual task sequence to this collection and then also check the disable this software on deployed computers in the program properties also of the package (this will prevent it running on the PCs again)......then I am fairly sure with a bit of tricking about that you could have a query associated with the TS that it will only install on this adobe collection.....so if this TS is deployed to say other collections it will not install as the query does not have entry for the other collections.......but again it is down to SCCM admins to keep control over these licence specific software deployments....so in other words if you do get this to work then these software deployments should be only deployed via the TS with the queries configured and not via the software package/program method


Hope this helps a little.

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