Systems Management Server (SMS) 2003 is a legacy platform from Microsoft for change and configuration management. SMS 2003 has been superseded by System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM), which is part of Microsoft's System Center suite of advanced tools for managing local and cloud-based IT resources. Progent can help businesses of any size to maintain their current SMS Server environment and can also help plan and implement an efficient migration to SCCM 2016. For information about Progent's consulting services for SCCM 2016, visit System Center 2016 Configuration Manager planning and support services. Progent can also provide online and on-premises consulting for the management tools included with System Center 2016 including Data Protection Manager (SCDPM) for backup and recovery and Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM) for creating and managing private clouds. For details about Progent's support for System Center 2016, visit Microsoft System Center 2016 consulting services.
Important features of SMS 2003 include:
Systems Management Server 2003 adds functionality for change and configuration management of Windows-based systems with Feature Packs. Feature Packs reduce the overall operational costs of managing and deploying software by making it easier to deploy system images, manage mobile devices, and operate management tools.
- Detailed application deployment planning
Detailed reports ease the application deployment process. For a planned deployment, you can easily obtain the target groups' current hardware base, existing applications and version information, and the current service pack and hotfix levels of the system.
- Rich distribution targeting
You can finely target software distribution and other management tasks to machines and users using a wide variety of properties including network and hardware configuration, Active Directory organizational unit, or group membership and software installation status.
- Delta distribution between site servers and distribution points
When you make alterations to previously deployed software package sources, only the source changes are propagated between Systems Management Server 2003 site servers and distribution points, rather than the entire application image.
- Elevated rights Windows Installer Service
Because Systems Management Server 2003 supports the Windows Installer service (.MSI), SMS 2003 can switch user account contexts during a package installation allowing for self-healing application installation on 'locked-down' systems.
- Add/Remove Programs support
You can easily publish applications to the Add/Remove Programs interface to provide users with a consistent way of installing applications.
- Application usage monitoring
You can generate summary and detail reports describing which applications were used by which users, for how long and on which managed systems. You can track usage by user or computer, and create compliance reports comparing concurrent usage data to current license ownership.
- Detailed hardware inventory
WMI enhancements allow improved client-side performance during inventory scans and a richer set of inventory data, including BIOS and chassis enclosure data.
- Web-enabled reporting
SMS 2003 includes more than 120 pre-built reports covering hardware and software inventory as well as computer status and software deployment progress.
- Vulnerability identification
Using standard Microsoft security tools such as the Microsoft Baseline Security Inventory Analyzer and the Office Update Inventory Tool you can inventory your systems for applicable patches and vulnerabilities.
- Patch deployment wizard
SMS 2003 provides a simple console wizard to assist administrators in deploying required patches to managed devices.
- Vulnerability assessment and mitigation reporting
After SMS 2003 identifies missing security patches, the results of these individual scans are then rolled up into the central database for reporting and targeting purposes.
- Bandwidth-aware clients
The Advanced Client uses the Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) technology to detect the capacity of the client network connection and adjust transfer rates efficiently.
Upon reconnection, any partial downloads to clients will continue where they left off, eliminating the need to restart transmissions because of a disconnected session. Checkpoint/restart works at a byte level so that only bytes not transferred need to be downloaded.
- Download and execute
Once a new software package has been successfully downloaded to a client, it stays cached on the client system until the scheduled install time.
- Location Awareness
As mobile users move through geographic locations, flexible site boundaries ensure that they always receive software packages and updates from the nearest appropriate installation source, and are not required to install software across the corporate WAN.
- Active Directory discovery
Systems Management Server 2003 can automatically discover the Active Directory properties of users and systems, including organizational unit container and group level membership. You can use these Active Directory attributes to target the distribution of software packages.
- Active Directory-based site boundaries
You can base site boundaries on Active Directory site names rather than IP subnets.
- Advanced Security Mode
You can use built-in computer and local system accounts for all server functions, simplifying account and password management and enhancing corporate security by avoiding the proliferation of high-rights accounts.
- Windows XP Remote Assistance support
The Windows XP Remote Assistance feature integrates with the manageability features for remotely troubleshooting clients directly from the Systems Management Server Administrator Console when a user is present at the remote machine.
How Progent's Consultants Provide Microsoft SMS 2003 Help
Efficient maintenance of SMS Server or migration from SMS Server to System Center Configuration Manager requires in-depth experience with a broad range of Microsoft technologies. Progent's nationwide team of Microsoft-certified consultants has knowledge and experience to help businesses of any size to streamline configuration and change processes to minimize IT management costs, enhance network security, maximize productivity by keeping applications up-to-date, ensure compliance with software licenses, and track software usage patterns to help you make smart purchasing decisions. Progent's expertise with providing advanced consulting support online can also save time and cut support costs, and Progent's CISSP-certified cybersecurity consultants and CISM-certified security management consultants can help you develop a comprehensive security plan that incorporates powerful security features of Microsoft's change-management solutions. Progent also offers world-class consulting for Microsoft System Center Operations Manager (SCOM), which is a key component of Microsoft's System Center 2012 R2 solution for integrated network management.
For more information about Progent's consulting and support services for Systems Management Server 2003, call 1-800-993-9400 or visit Contact Progent.
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