SCCM CB application creation is the next step after the installation of SCCM CB 1702 installation, SCCM CB AD discovery and client installation. I already covered in the previous posts “Step by Step Video Tutorial of SCCM CB 1702 Baseline version Installation” and “Video Tutorial How to Perform SCCM CB AD Discovery and Install Client“. SCCM CB application creation is the first step in this process. The second step is SCCM CB Application Deployment, and the third step is the installation of SCCM CB application on the clients. We will cover all the scenarios in this post. I have already documented all these steps in the video tutorial which has more details about SCCM CB application creation (upload), deployment and installation.
Application deployment is one of the features many corporate organizations are using to cater their business requirements. In SCCM CB, we will have the option to create packages and deploy those SCCM packages. Yes, packages are required in the some of the scenarios. Apart from that, the packages are used to deploy old school win32 apps which got migrated to SCCM CB environment from SCCM 2003/2007/2012. I would recommend taking advantages of SCCM CB applications rather than still using standard packages.
How to create/Upload SCCM CB Application
SCCM CB application creation is the first step in this process. The application can be created based on several types of installation files. These installation files are ranged from win 32 MSI apps, EXE and then the wide range of mobile (MDM) apps. The best-preferred installation type for Windows devices is MSI, and we are going cover MSI app creation in this post. I have already shown in the video that how to create share folder to store the application source.
The first point we need to make sure that SCCM CB application source should be stored in an UNC path (\\ServerShare\Sources\). If we don’t provide the UNC path as a source location for MSI app source, you will get an error in the wizard as you can see in the video tutorial.
SCCM CB application creation process will create a metadata in the console, and it will create the related DB entries. Apart from this, this process will create a bundle of files which this MSI installation file required for the complete installation of the application. This bundle of files will be delivered to SCCM content stores called DPs. The client will download (if in case the deployment setting is to download the content from DP) and install it. All this process is covered in the video, and we will cover in the following sessions.
How to Deploy SCCM CB application and Content?
Once SCCM CB application is created, and the app reference is there in the console then, we can go ahead deploy the application content (the source files) to the content store servers (Distribution Points). The entire process is explained in the video tutorial above. We can initiate a distribute content option to start the application source replication process to remote DPs. SCCM CB application content distribution is mandatory before we deploy the application to SCCM client devices or users.
Once the application content is distributed to the DPs then, we can deploy or schedule the application installation to the device collection or user collection. There are a couple of decisions you want to make before the start of the SCCM CB application deployment process. First one is to decide whether we should deploy apps to Device collections? If we are deploying it to device collection then, all the users in that device will get the application, and there could be some license implications as well. The second option is to deploy the application to user collection. From my perspective, this should be the default deployment practice if you don’t have any specific requirement to deploy apps to devices.
The other important point in SCCM CB application deployment is about the behavior of application installation. We have two option in the application installation behavior. First one is to empower the user experience by making the SCCM app as AVAILABLE. In the available scenario, the application will be deployed to the user, and it will sit in the software center until the user initiates the installation from software center app. The second option is to deploy the application as REQUIRED and in this scenario, the application will automatically install on the device without any user intervention.
How to Install Application on End User Device?
Once you deploy the application to the collection as mentioned in the video tutorial above, the SCCM client will check for the new policies at the next scheduled interval. On the schedule, the SCCM client will download the application source download, and installation will automatically start on the Windows device as you can see in the video tutorial. The installation behavior setting is very important and depending up that behavior the actual app install will kick off.