What’s new in System Center Configuration Manager 2012R2

Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager 2012 R2 offers a great deal of new and promising additions. In this Post, I will highlight some of these features: ConfigMgr Setup – Database & Log files When you run Setup to install a new primary site or central administration site, you can select non-default locations for the site database files. The option to specify non-default file locations is not available when you specify a SQL Server cluster. Client Assignment

  • Ability to reassign clients, including managed mobile devices, to another primary site in the hierarchy, individually or in bulk.
  • There is now an additional option in the Client Push wizard. When you choose to “Always reinstall the client software” you can now also choose to “Uninstall the existing Configuration Manager client
  • A new Resultant Client Settings option allows you to view the effective client settings that will be applied to the selected device.

Content Management

  • Pull-distribution points support the prioritization of their source distribution points.
  • Pull-distribution points push status for completed actions to the site server (instead of distmgr having to poll each Pull DP periodically).
  • From the Distribution Status node in the Monitoring workspace of the Configuration Manager console, you can cancel distributions that are in progress to a distribution point, and redistribute distributions that have failed.
  • You can use the new built-in report named Distribution point usage summary to view details about how individual distribution points are utilized, including how many unique clients access the distribution point, and how much data transfers from the distribution point.

Company Resource Access

  • Under Compliance Settings. In ConfigMgr 2012 R2 you now have the ability to deploy Certificate, VPN and WiFi profiles to a collection of devices.
  • VPN Profiles – configure profiles for Microsoft, Cisco, Juniper, Dell SonicWALL, F5, Check Point
  • App triggered VPN – VPN automatically established if the app requires it
  • WiFi Profiles – manage WiFi protocol and authentication settings
  • Certificate Management – manage and distribute certificates

Software Deployment

  • Maintenance Windows for Task Sequences and Software Update Deployments
  • Preview Automatic Deployment Rules applicability before Deployment

Software Update Management

  • New maintenance window dedicated for software updates installation.
  • You can now change the deployment package for an existing automatic deployment rule.
  • You can now preview software updates that meet the property filters and search criteria that you define in an automatic deployment rule.

Mobile Device Management

  • MDM Enrollment
    • PC Settings > Network > Workplace
    • Built in Windows OS support for access to ‘Workplace’ services
    • Supported for Windows 8.1 PC/RT and iOS.
    • Registers the mobile device with on premise or Azure Active Directory
  • Workplace join
    • Registers the mobile device with Configuration Manager/Windows Intune
    • User-initiated process over SSL.
    • Admin defines which users are authorized to enroll devices

Operating System Deployment

  • Support for boot images based on Windows PE 3.1.
  • Virtual hard disk management which allows you to create and modify virtual hard disks, and upload them to Virtual Machine Manager.
  • New Task Steps
    • Run PowerShell script
    • Check (computer) Readiness
    • Set Dynamic Variable

Monitoring and Reporting Reports are now fully enabled for role-based administration. The data for all reports included with Configuration Manager is filtered based on the permissions of the administrative user who runs the report. Administrative users with specific roles can only view information defined for their roles.

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