SCCM DP Selection Criteria Content Source Location Priority List

I have seen that SCCM DP Selection Criteria (content source location priority) is a most popular SCCM interview question. If you are one of those SCCM admins who stumbled across this interview question, then this post is for you.

SCCM content location logic is not always the same; it can change depending on the version of SCCM & scenarios.

What is SCCM Content Source Location?

Content source location is the place where the content is stored. You can classify content as source files for an application in some scenarios. For example, when a client is trying to find out a content location for Office 365 ProPlus application, it’s basically looking for the source files of Office 365 ProPlus.

Following are some of the SCCM content source location examples:

  • Peer Source Computer
  • Distribution Point (DP)
  • Windows Update Cloud Service
  • Cloud DP

When an SCCM client needs content, it requests SCCM MP to provide a valid list of content source locations. So, these are the “network locations” from where the client can download the source files of the package or application or script.

SCCM content source location priority - SCCM DP Selection Criteria
SCCM content source location priority – SCCM DP Selection Criteria

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Examples of SCCM SCCM DP Selection Criteria

You can find more details about SCCM Content Source Location Priority list in the below section. SUBNET and BOUNDARYGROUP are the two location lists you can see in the below log file samples. But, there can be other location lists like:

  • (PEER)
  • (SITE)
  • (SUBNET)

How Clients Select Content Source Location?

Following are the some of the sample log file entries from ContentTransfer.log.

<![LOG[In CTMAggregateDownloadHistoryTask::Execute, preparing to aggregate and send download history to server.]LOG]!>
<![LOG[Sending client download history summary XML with character length of 1107.]LOG]!>
<![LOG[Starting CTM job {B6DD3E60-6905-43B7-976E-224A6A7B5E0C}.]LOG]!>
<![LOG[Created CTM job {B6DD3E60-6905-43B7-976E-224A6A7B5E0C} for user S-1-5-21-527731425-643580666-2129242174-500]LOG]!>
<![LOG[Created and Sent Location Request '{DDC3B522-C084-4587-9C88-588CD9A9F48E}' for package A000000A]LOG]!>
<![LOG[Queued location request '{DDC3B522-C084-4587-9C88-588CD9A9F48E}' for CTM job '{B6DD3E60-6805-43B7-976E-224A6A7B5E0C}'.]LOG]!>
<![LOG[Persisted locations for CTM job {B6DD3E60-6805-53B7-976E-224A6A7B5E0C}:
 (SUBNET) <a href="http://ACMCM-DP02.inter/SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/ACN0000A]LOG]!>
<![LOG[CTM job {B6DD3E60-6805-53B7-976E-224A6A7B5E0C} (corresponding DTS job {9451C60F-C152-531D-B738-DC02E4FE17B8}) started download from 'http://ACMCM-DP02.inter/NOCERT_SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/ACN0000A' for full content download.]LOG]!>
 Persisted locations for CTM job {984866B5-5D73-5E1D-A94D-90DF47F64D9B}: (BOUNDARYGROUP) http://ACMCM-DP02.inter/SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/Content_34072fcd-539a-4523-8fb8-97a7c95d2c46.1 
(BOUNDARYGROUP) http://ACMCM-DP02.inter/SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/Content_34072fcd-539a-4523-8fb8-97a7c95d2c46.1
(BOUNDARYGROUP) http://ACMCM-DP02.inter/NOCERT_SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/Content_34072fcd-539a-4523-8fb8-97a7c95d2c46.1
(BOUNDARYGROUP) http://ACMCM-DP02.inter/NOCERT_SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/Content_34072fcd-539a-4523-8fb8-97a7c95d2c46.1
(BOUNDARYGROUP) https://ACMCM-DP02.inter/CCMTOKENAUTH_SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/Content_34072fcd-539a-4523-8fb8-97a7c95d2c46.1
(BOUNDARYGROUP) https://ACMCM-DP02.inter/CCMTOKENAUTH_SMS_DP_SMSPKG$/Content_34072fcd-539a-4523-8fb8-97a7c95d2c46.1

List – SCCM SCCM DP Selection Criteria?

The following is the list of SCCM Content Source location priority list.

  1. The DP on the same computer as the client
  2. A peer source in the same network subnet
  3. A DP in the same network subnet
  4. A peer source in the same boundary group
  5. A DP in the current boundary group
  6. A DP in a neighbor boundary group configured for fallback
  7. A DP in the default site boundary group
  8. The Windows Update cloud service
  9. An internet-facing DP
  10. A cloud DP in Azure

NOTE 1– DO (Delivery Optimization) isn’t applicable to the above mentioned source prioritization list. The Windows Update Agent (WUA) downloads content for DO. If the WUA can’t find the content, then the SCCM client uses the above list to search for it.

Additional Tips

When an SCCM client in two boundary groups, the SCCM content source location priority can change and become conflicting.

NOTE! – When you use 3rd party content providers like Adaptiva OneSite or 1E Nomad, then that provider will take the precedence on content location.

Real world Scenario:

  • A Windows 10 machine is holding DP and Peer Cache roles. The question of which content location will take the precedence in this scenario?
  • Will Peer source or DP take the SCCM content location priority?
  • The content got downloaded from DP share on that Windows 10 machine.
  • So, DP got priority over peer cache on the same Windows 10 machine?


The following are some of the troubleshooting tips on SCCM content source location issues. The first post will give you the details log files. And the second post is to help to troubleshoot with Support Center.


Content source priority from Microsoft Documentation

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2 thoughts on “SCCM DP Selection Criteria Content Source Location Priority List”

    • A DP? You mean you have DP A, DP B, DP C, and DP D in the same boundary group ? If so it will go the same logic explained in the post above. Why you think the logic should be different pls


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