Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings with Sign Wave SCCM Collections

Let’s understand how Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings with Sign Wave SCCM Collections. In this post, you will learn one of the exciting ways to handle the WaaS Deployment Rings strategy with SCCM.

I know the customers using this method to deploy Windows 10 WaaS for their production environment.

NOTE! Desktop Analytics integration with SCCM will help automate most of these tasks in the future.


In recent days we (SCCM Admins) are more focused on designing the deployment rings predominantly used in Windows as a service: Windows 10 deployment rings.

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Windows 10 deployment rings are similar to the deployment groups created for version upgrades. Deployment Rings are how devices are separated into a specific timeline.

With Windows 10, you construct deployment rings differently in each servicing tool, but the concepts remain the same.

Why SCCM Deployment Rings?

Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings Strategy

An Idea that may help !!!!

Each deployment ring is expected to reduce the risk of issues resulting from the deployment of the feature updates by gradually deploying the update to the entire organization’s client estate.


In this blog, I am focusing on reducing the complexity, risk, and control options and mainly the possibility of re-using the segment of rings (Especially Production Ring) for Windows 10 update deployments and large-sized applications.

Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings with SCCM Sign Wave?

Generally, Microsoft Deployment Ring representation is as below, followed as a best practice and tweaking the ring structure based on the organization’s needs.

Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings
Figure-1: Deployment Rings Representation (Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings) – Image credit to Microsoft and Michael Niehaus

Designing non-production rings in an organization may be a bit straightforward and comfortable as you have the set of devices (mostly based on personas/department etc.) already defined.

However, for the production ring, which is of a vast audience – Is there a way we can explore more and make it dynamic and automated as a one-time activity???

The production deployment ring strategy is the point where I would like to introduce Sign Wave SCCM Collections. You will see more details about Sign Wave SCCM collection in the following sections.

Sign Wave Use Case

I interacted with one of the use cases (Green Field Environment ) with specific requirements to have a dynamic way of designing these SCCM collections, which can address the below critical elements.

  • New Machine inclusions
  • One-time activity
  • It can be re-used as BAU for application and software update deployments as well (Especially Large Sized apps to control the bandwidth)
  • Impact Control

To address this – I came up with a Sign wave design for SCCM collections, and these collections are to be made part of the Production Ring.

SCCM Collection Structure

Check out the following example to get more details about the SCCM sign wave collection structure.

Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings
Figure-2: Sign Wave Collection Sample (Windows 10 WaaS Deployment Rings)


Assuming there are 1000 machines on-boarded to SCCM and these 1000 machines are from different countries. 100 engines from each country for ten (10) countries.

Note: By this logically, we will have 10 Wave collections

Sign Wave: This collection structure is similar to the ring approach (generally referred to as Sign wave collections) and additionally provides certain advantages.

How to Populate Sign Wave SCCM Collections?

Typically, these hundred (100) machines are expected to be a mixture from all ten (10) countries. We can explore the possibilities using their unique attributes and bring them to the respective collection using queries.

Example: W10 – Coll: Query criteria can be Computers Ending with 1 – Were Name like “%1”. These query criteria will bring the machines satisfying this condition from all ten (10) countries. We can find similar rules and try to build all the Wave collections.

Note: Additionally, we can increase the number of Waves to fill the criteria if some combinations are considered.

Benefits of Sign Wave Collection WaaS Deployment Rings

One-time Activity: All mass / global deployments, including software updates, can be targeted to these Wave collections. No need to create another set of collections for the mass / global deployments

Bandwidth Control: Since each Wave collection consists of machines from a different country, the devices would receive the deployments accordingly at their local time based on the schedule.

This will avoid all machines hitting DP for content and MP for Policy simultaneously from one geographical region.

A deployment scheduled at 10:00 AM Local Time is targeted for W10 collection. In this case, the machine from India would receive this deployment when it is 10:00 AM in India, and similarly, the device from Singapore would receive the deployment when it is 10:00 AM in Singapore.

This creates a sign wave kind of requests hitting and avoids the simultaneous hits.

Number of Waves (Collections): Additionally, we can increase the number of Waves to fill the criteria if some combinations are incorporated.

New Machine inclusion: New machines introduced to the environment will automatically be part of any Wave collection depending upon which criteria it satisfies.

Deployment Numbers: The number of deployments to be created each time is limited.

Huge Size Deployments: Since the deployments will be in a very controlled manner, this would additionally help for the bigger packages being released phase-wise.

Impact Control: If any impact is identified due to the deployment in the first W10 target at 10:00 AM roll-out, other implementations can be stopped or controlled to avoid the other effects.

Note: This design has strong, strongly dependent naming conventions followed.



Gurudatt is a Technical Architect with 15 years of experience in the End User Computing space. His main area of interest is the design and implementation of ConfigMgr Infrastructure. He has a vast knowledge of ConfigMgr infrastructure & Client-side troubleshooting.

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