Back in November during the Configuration Manager MVP Summit 2017 we did a hackathon that week which was amazing fun! Some of the features that was being worked on during that week is now in the Configuration Manager 2712 Technical Preview that was just released. The official documentation is here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sccm/core/get-started/capabilities-in-technical-preview-1712
There are some really great features in here like Client PXE, Last Logged on user in device view and Multiselect of Application in Software Center. I hope more of the things we talked about and worked on that week will make it in the next Technical preview as there was some really cool stuff!
No Let’s have a look at these new cool features.
Wow!! This is mindblowing, that is something I never thought would ship with Configuration Manager ever. Ronni Pedersen wrote a great blog post in how to make a client in the 1711 Technical Preview with the DP role to act as a PXE server https://www.ronnipedersen.com/2017/11/19/sccm-enable-desktop-clients-as-pxe-servers/ . The Distribution Point role should not be needed anymore in this release.
When testing it I didn’t get it to work, I can see it responds just fine but it is missing a file ☹ I will update this when I get it to work.
How it works, we need to distribute the Boot image to the client cache on the computer. I did that with a Task Sequence that simply downloaded the content.
Then we can enable clients to respond to PXE requests which can be done using a Custom Client Setting.
When configured this we go the client and after the policy is downloaded a new log file shows up the C:\Windows\CCM\Logs folder SMSPXE.log
And in there we can see that it actually responds just fine.
Do not automatically upgrade superseded applications
This was also part of the Hackathon I was a part. Finally!!!! Supersedence is fixed!!!! 😀 Based upon your user voice feedback, in this release you have the option to configure an application deployment to not automatically upgrade any superseded version. Now when creating the deployment, on the Deployment Settings page of the Deploy Software Wizard, for either Available or Required install purpose, you can enable or disable the option to Automatically upgrade any superseded versions of this application.
Device list displays primary user
There are two new features in the Device view in the console.
Primary users column are now visible per default. And “Last Logged on User” is a new Optional column that can be added. Extremely useful!
Improvements to Office 365 client management dashboard
The Office 365 client management dashboard now displays a list of relevant devices when graph sections are selected.
Install multiple applications in Software Center
This is a great new feature, I was in the Hackathon group that worked on this. We can no install multiple applications using multi-select in Software Center. Will save much time in many scenarios.
Renamed collections display in existing collection membership rules
This solves a very annoying behavior when working with collections. So now when a collection is a member of another collection and it is renamed, the new name is updated under membership rules
Allow user interaction when installing applications as system
Was introduced in the 1711 Technical preview but still listed as a new feature in Technical Preview 1712. This gives us the possibility to allow users to interact with an application deployed to System and set to run “Whether or not a user is logged in or not”. A question I got on Twitter when tweeting the picture is if the application can be added to a Task Sequence when that setting is used and the answer is YES.
Surface Devices Dashboard
The Surface dashboard now displays firmware version for Surface devices rather than operating system version.
And as always it is now time to continue testing and see if there are more features hidden in this release!