Decided today to install SCCM v.Next beta 1 in Hyper-V virtual machine on my test Windows Server 2008 R2 box. All seemed to go well until “Prerequisites checker” kicked in. My configuration was missing several things, so I started to repair one by one.
To my surprise, it seems that SCCM v.Next does not work with SQL server 2008 R2. So I had to install 2008 version with SP1. After that, it is mandatory that you install Cumulative update package 6 for SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 1 (KB977443). Since prerequisite checker searched for this update, and this update could not be installed on R2 version of SQL server, it is logical now why you need to install 2008 version. Couple of more thing where needed to be fixed, such as installing and configuring WSUS server and opening ports on local firewall (inbound, TCP 1433 and 4022). Prerequisites check now passed with all green, and I was ready to install SCCM v.Next.
I choose to install SCCM Primary Site Server with typical installation options. Be aware that this type of installation will install SCCM in mixed and not native mode. I tried to install it in native mode, but ended up having some certificate problems so for the sake of not loosing to much time, I did it in mixed mode. You can of course opt to select all options manually, which is recommended way to go.
After 20 minutes, whole thing was set up and ready to go. First thing that everyone will notice is all new management console. It is a step forward from MMC 3.0 and all future SC applications will share the same new console. SCCM v.Next is now user centric oriented as opposed to be computer centric. User is now the main object of targeting and administration. All well known options are still there, and if you are familiar with old console, you will not loose much time on learning some new features of a new management console. My first impression is that this console is much faster than the old one. There are four main areas in the console, Administration, Software Library, Monitoring and Assets and Compliance.
On the hardware side, as I sad earlier, I installed it in virtual machine with 2 virtual processors and 4 GB of RAM, and speed is quite adequate for testing and poking around. Later on I will ad a client or two and test software deployment, compliance settings and so on. Stay tuned for deeper look inside.