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managing/deploying 1000s of clients... how do you?

Hey Party people,

I'm having an issue with agent deploys and wondering how others handle this task when dealing with a few thousand clients. My issue- I'm deploying to over a thousand clients within multiple domains, on multiple wans and getting loads of expired installs. For isntance, I just tried to deploy a groupUnder sub-task details for the "stopped" tasks I see the error "Failed to authenticate with remote system, system error: The network path was not found." but I have confirmed and know for certain that my credentials are OK. After speaking with McAfee they're suggesting I have network problems, possible bandwidth issues. I guess that makes sense as from what they say, there is no innate throttling/scheduling done when the deploy task is run for several clients, so if I'm deploying to 700 clients, its trying to get em all done at the same time.

So my question is, if ePO does not internally/automatically stagger agent deploy, can this be accomplished some other way? A deploy task tied to a report that only lists a specified number of unmanaged clients at a go.

Secondly, I know a logon/startup script can get this done and is actually my preference but my overlords prefer to deploy via ePO. I'm wondering what the general consensus is as far as best practices for how to deploy the client is?

Sorry for the long post.

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RE: managing/deploying 1000s of clients... how do you?

I've seen this before. Make sure file sharing is enabled on the client. You should be able to open "\\COMPUTER-NAME\c$" from the ePO server. If not you could check a client's network properties to enable it. I have looked around to see if there was a group policy that could set it, but it looks like you have to physically be in front of the machine.
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RE: managing/deploying 1000s of clients... how do you?

Since enabling File Sharing is not an option for many organizations - government agencies in particular, we're trying various methods of batch file deployment, scheduled tasks, login scripts, but are still having issues - particularly with Windows 7. Scheduled Tasks and XP worked reasonable well, but I havent' been able to get it to work on W7 RTM.

It would be really helpful to have a functional msi install, but McAfee doesn't seem to want to provide one.