In this article, you’ll learn how to exclude folders from software inventory in SCCM. You can skip or exclude certain folders while running SCCM software inventory using the Skpswi.dat file.
The software inventory in SCCM is used to collect information about the files located on client devices. The inventory can be initiated to collect information about a specific file, files with a specific extension, or all files on the computer. The information that is collected from the clients is stored on the Configuration Manager site database server.
The more files that you specify for software inventory collection, the more processing is required. Therefore, instead of enabling software inventory for all files and the entire system, it’s best to exclude certain folders from software inventory in Configuration Manager.
In our earlier article, we showed you how to configure software inventory in SCCM. The steps in the guide will assist you in configuring the software inventory from the ground up, explaining all the available options. If you are using Intune, you can export a software inventory report with a few easy steps.
Some organizations restrict software inventory to a specific folder or a client drive. This is done to prevent collecting sensitive information on the client computers or servers. In such cases, you can explicitly tell Configuration Manager not to software inventory a folder or a drive by creating a Skpswi.dat file. For example, you can exclude specific folders on a file server or distribution point that you do not want to inventory.
What is Skpswi.dat file?
In our earlier article, we explained the Skpswi.dat file in detail. In short, Skpswi.dat prevents software inventory by SCCM. If you place this file in a folder, the software inventory will be skipped for that folder. Software inventory will not inventory the client drive or the folder again unless this file is deleted from the drive on the client computer. Be careful of the extensive use of the Skpswi file because it may provide inaccurate software report results.
Also Read: Query Time Zone Inventory using SCCM
Exclude folders from Software Inventory in SCCM
Perform the following steps to prevent software inventory on specific folders or the entire drive on the client computer:
Step 1: Create Skpswi.dat file
Launch Notepad.exe and create an empty file named Skpswi.dat. Make sure the file extension is .dat and not .txt. You cannot create a .txt file on C: drive (root drive) and other locations due to security reasons. Therefore, create this file on your desktop or some other folder, and later we will place this file in the required location.
Step 2: Place the Skpswi.dat file
Place the Skpswi.dat file at the root of each client hard drive or folder structure that you want to exclude from the software inventory. For example, in the screenshot below, we have placed the Skpswi.dat file in the C:\Windows directory. By doing this, the SCCM software inventory will be skipped for the C:\Windows directory.
Note that excluding a folder from the software inventory also excludes any subfolders. So be careful while placing this file into a folder on the Windows client.
Step 3: Turn on Hidden attribute for Skpswi.dat file
Chances are that other administrators could delete the Skpswi file if they don’t know its purpose. That’s why Microsoft recommends turning on the hidden attribute for this file. Right-click the Skpswi.dat file and click Properties. In the file properties for the Skpswi.dat file, select the Hidden attribute, as shown in the below screenshot.
After making these changes, when the software inventory scan is initiated on the client computer, the folders are now excluded from the software inventory. By default, the schedule of software inventory and file collection is set to 7 days.