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SMS: How the 'Assignments Are Not Mandatory Over Slow Links' Feature Works
Article ID: 202332 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q202332
In Systems Management Server (SMS) 2.0 Software Distribution assignments can be configured so they do not run when a client has a slow connection, and yet they are still mandatory over regular Local Area Network (LAN) connections. This article documents how this feature works.
SMS 2.0 provides a way for clients using a slow connection to skip the running of advertisements that would usually run. This is accomplished by way of the Assignments are not mandatory over slow links advertisement check box.
If the Assignments are not mandatory over slow links box is checked for an advertisement, the SMS Advertised Program Manager (SMSAPM32) client agent tests to see if the client is currently connected over a slow link, and if so, then it does not schedule a program to run based on any of the assignments listed in the advertisement. The check box only affects scheduling based on the assignments in the advertisement with the box checked. If there are other advertisements for the same program and the box is not checked in those other advertisements, the program will still be scheduled based on assignments in those other advertisements. The following example is a sample scenario of this:
To trigger SMSAPM32 to re-evaluate whether programs should be scheduled based on the speed of the network connection, use the refresh option in the Advertised Programs Monitor on the client. But you should note that SMSAPM32 caches the determination of whether or not the network is fast or slow for one minute. In other words, any requests to test the network speed within one minute of the last time it was actually tested will result in the same determination. This is to avoid extra network traffic when the ODPs find numerous programs that need to be scheduled.
Sample ScenarioAdvert 1 for Program A has an assignment to run at 2:00 P.M. but is not mandatory over slow links. If the client is connected over a slow link when the Offer Data Providers (ODP) run to learn of this advertisement, SMSAPM32 will not schedule this program.
If, in addition to Advert 1, you create Advert 2, also for Program A, that has an assignment to run at 5:00 P.M., and is mandatory over slow links, when the client learns of both Advert 1 and Advert 2, and the client is connected over a slow link, Program A will be scheduled to run at 5:00 P.M.
Assuming Advert 1 and Advert 2 above, if the client connects over a fast link at 3:00 P.M. and the ODPs run to learn (or relearn) about the advertisements, Program A will be scheduled to run immediately because Advert 1 makes Program A mandatory over a fast link at 2:00 P.M. This is true regardless of whether or not the client previously learned of these advertisements.
In the reverse case, where Advert 1 contains a 2:00 P.M. assignment that is mandatory over slow links, and Advert 2 contains a 5:00 P.M. assignment that is not mandatory over slow links, SMSAPM32 will effectively ignore the assignments in Advert 2 and schedule Program A to run at 2:00 P.M. without testing to see if the connection is over a slow link.
For additional information on slow network speed detection and known issues, please refer to the following Microsoft Knowledge Base Articles:
(http://support.microsoft.com/kb/201836/EN-US/ )SMSAPM32 Network Speed Detection on SMS2.0 NetWare Clients
(http://support.microsoft.com/kb/235777/EN-US/ )SMSAPM32 Perform Slow Link Detect All Mandatory Assignment
(http://support.microsoft.com/kb/246974/EN-US/ )Mandatory Assignments May Not Run If CAP Cannot Be Reached