In this post I will cover how to setup or install SCCM distribution point. Distribution points in Configuration Manager hosts the content files that you deploy to devices and users.
In this post I will cover the steps to install distribution point role on a Windows Server.
Install a SCCM Distribution Point Role
Let us see how to install distribution point role in SCCM. You can also install a distribution point using PowerShell script. However if you are new to SCCM, I suggest you use the steps mentioned in this guide.
Most of all before you install DP role check the operating system compatibility. Click the link to know more about it.
SCCM Distribution Point Role Prerequisites
- Remote Differential Compression
- IIS Configuration
- Application Development: ISAPI Extensions
- Security: Windows Authentication
- IIS 6 Management Compatibility: IIS 6 Metabase and IIS 6 WMI Compatibility.
To support PXE or multicast role on DP, the WDS (Windows Deployment Services) role is required. WDS installs and configures automatically when you configure a distribution point to support PXE or Multicast on Windows Server. In addition to that PowerShell 3.0 is required on Windows Server before you install the distribution point.
SCCM Site Server Computer Account
You must add the SCCM site server computer account to the Local Administrators group on the box where DP role is to be installed. This step must be done before you install distribution point role else the installation fails.
In this example, SCCM is the name of the site server and SCCMDP01 is my DP server where DP role shall be installed. So I add the SCCM site server computer account to the Local Administrators group on SCCMDP01 computer.
Add a new SCCM Distribution Point Server
To add a new SCCM distribution point server using SCCM console
- Launch the SCCM console.
- Click Administration > Site Configuration. Right click Servers and Site System Roles.
- Select Create Site System Server.
- The Create Site System Server Wizard opens and should help you to install distribution point role.
In the Create Site System Server Wizard, click Browse. Select the computer on which DP role is to be installed. Click the drop-down and select the Site Code and click Next.
On the System Role Selection page, check the box “Distribution Point”. Click Next.
SCCM Distribution Point Settings
While installing distribution point role on a server, you will see several options to configure. Let us look at each of these options.
- Install and configure IIS if required by Configuration Manager: Enable this setting to install Windows components required for a distribution point automatically. To install it via command line check this post.
- Enable and configure BranchCache for this distribution point: Enable this setting to enable and configure BranchCache.
- Specify how client computers communicate with the distribution point: Choose either HTTP or HTTPS for client communication with the DP. If you select HTTPS, ensure you read this.
- Allow clients to connect anonymously: Enable this check box only if you need anonymous connections to the DP. The ConfigMgr client uses the Local System account and the Network Access account to connect to the DP.
SCCM Distribution Point Drive Settings
- Specify the drive settings for the distribution point – You can configure up to two disk drives for the content library and two disk drives for the package share.
- Drive space reserve (MB) – This value here determines the amount of free space on a drive before SCCM chooses a different drive and continues the copy process to that drive. By default the Drive space reserve is 50 MB. In this example I will set it to 1024 MB.
- Content Locations – Specify the content locations for the content library and package share. By default the content locations are set to Automatic. The primary content location will be set to the disk drive that has the most disk space at installation and the secondary location assigned the disk drive that has the second most free disk space.
I have explained the pull distribution point settings in this post. Click Next.
The PXE option can be enabled and configured later. Click Next.
We shall go through Multicast options later. Click Next.
Specify whether to validate the integrity of content files on the distribution point. When you enable content validation on a schedule, Configuration Manager will verify all the content on distribution point.
We will configure the content validation later. So click Next.
In this step you specify the boundary group(s) to associate with this site system. Click Add and choose the boundary group. Click Next.
Finally on the completion page, click Close.
Monitoring SCCM Distribution Point Installation
When you install a SCCM distribution point, you must know about the installation status. A DP install could fail due to multiple reasons. Therefore you must always check and verify the DP install status. To find out the distribution point status.
- Go to Monitoring workspace.
- Click Distribution Point Configuration Status.
- From the list of distribution point servers, select the SCCM distribution point server that you just setup.
- The status icon is important here. A green circle with tick shows successful DP install.
You can login to the DP server and check for the folders shown in the below screenshot.
Distribution Point Troubleshooting Log Files
Whenever you send any content from central DP to remote DP, it is important that content reaches the destination DP. Hence for SCCM DP troubleshooting, you can open the Distmgr.log file. This file records content creation, compression, delta replication, and information updates.