In this article I'd like to share information gleaned from a quarters worth of support incidents regarding Configuration Manager 2007 Software Update Point configuration and operations.

It is worth noting that Windows Software Update Server (WSUS) is a key dependency for the Software Update Point (SUP). When WSUS isn't happy, the SUP is also going to have a bad day.  Along with this, it’s crucial to allow WSUS to be configured by Configuration Manager as independent configuration of the WSUS Server usually results in unsatisfactory performance and additional problems.

Online Content

The online TechNet library for Configuration Manager has a plethora of topics covering Software Update Point (SUP) configurations so please explore the relevant links as needed. Before beginning, ensure you are familiar with the core topic About the Software Update Point (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb632674.aspx).

Common problems found with Software Update Points

WSUS Dependencies

Two dependencies in WSUS loom large for Configuration Manager and lead the way for problems in this area. Being aware of these two issues might save you time and suffering down the line. I will also note that WSUS 3.0 SP2 should provide relief from both of the following problems.

1. Issue per KB 954960. This first issue is one that results in some clients failing to pull down updates from the WSUS Server (SUP). This problem is documented in KB 954960 and occurs due to a recent revision to a Microsoft Office 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1) update that causes some WSUS 3.0 servers to incorrectly synchronize the revised update with the update’s approvals. When the affected client computers communicate with such a server, the Web service is unable to process the approvals, therefore the detection is unsuccessful.

Resolution: The WSUS KB 954960 article provides a download link for the update directly.

2. WSUS Server Uninstalls. Continuing to drive support calls is the problem where the WSUS Server underlying the SUP is found to have been uninstalled. Forums posts correlate this problem with Server Reboots as well as being linked to SMS Site Backup operations. What is understood is this occurs when WSUS is installed on the Site Server and an MSI repair call is made to WSUS which fails.

While there is no current fix for this problem it is expected to be resolved by WSUS 3.0 SP2. Fortunately there are two widely discussed workarounds to be found on the forums which should help:

Workarounds

· Move the WSUS server off of the Configuration Manager Site server.

· A manual registry edit can be implemented to prevent the WSUS repair from launching. For more on this please reference various forums postings such as this one: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/configmgrsum/thread/ec73565a-93df-48d6-b411-35ffec7d25e4/

Synchronization with Microsoft Updates

When the SUP fails to sync with Microsoft Update, there is really only one flavor of problem seen with regularity.

NOTE: This same problem impacts Upstream/Downstream and related Server Sync operations.

1. Port and Proxy Configurations and Authentication. Whether the proxy is hardware, software, on the SUP or on the network, the results are the same. Incorrect configurations will result in a sync failure. This includes omitting a proxy, defining one when not needed, WPAD configurations, as well as incorrect authentication, filtering, or port details. It’s recommended you work with your networking team to identify any proxy configurations that might exist. I regret that tools and approaches to investigating this type of issue are beyond the scope of this blog but you can find more here:

Configuration Manager SUP Configurations

When external dependencies are in hand, the next common call driver involves configuration choices for the Software Update Point. These are common enough to represent an ongoing class of issues and worth identifying here.

1. Active SUP - With all the configuration details necessary, it's not uncommon to overlook defining an Active SUP. Fortunately it's quick and easy to do. Find more here:

2. Ports on the SUP - Bringing up the tail end of common issues is the configuration of the SUP ports. This is a simple task yet is often overlooked and not validated. It's easy to correct when incorrect as well. If your SUP is having a problem, please make this simple check which may be part of the puzzle. Find more here:

General Information

The following are resources you may find useful when approaching Software Update Point issues and strategies:

Super Flows for SUP Sync: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=d509a9f4-e397-4d0a-89bb-fa3d68b9e8be&DisplayLang=en

Software Update related TechNet Forums: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/configmgrsum/threads/

WSUS Homepage on TechNet: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/wsus/default.aspx

WSUS Team Blog: http://blogs.technet.com/wsus/default.aspx