How to provide hard statistics on your build sequences.
A while back my boss gave me two goals for our OS deployments; 1) he set a target for 90% successful builds and 2) build times as close to 1 hour as possible. Okay, getting there is one thing, but how do I report on that?
Last week I wrote a post about setting up Windows PE Peer Caching. One of the limitations of that feature is that it only works within the Windows PE portion of a build task sequence. Once in the full OS or for deployments to established clients Peer Caching is unavailable.
Phil Wilcock, co-founder of 2Pint Software, commented and pointed out that you could use Peer Caching for getting the OS deployed and then use BranchCache within the full OS.
Now, I’ll be honest here. I understand the “textbook” when it comes to BranchCache but I had never actually set it up. It always seemed to fall under the, “One day I’m going to have to give that a try.” Well that day is today. This post will get BranchCache working with Configuration Manager. Once that is done my next step will be getting 2Pint’s BranchCache for OSD up and running.
“Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
What is Windows PE Peer Caching?
Windows PE Peer Caching was a feature added in Configuration Manager Technical Preview 2. During an OS deployment, it allows a machine being built to pull content from other systems on the local subnet (its peers) as opposed to going across a potentially slow WAN connection. It is quite simply a peer-to-peer network of content providers. This is similar functionality to 1E’s NomadBranch and 2Pint’s BranchCache for OSD Toolkit.