A slightly odd ball title, but I wanted to cover off a few scenarios that seem to have plagued a few people in the past. Hopefully this article will help a few people. I was called into a client site as their distribution points and WSUS drives were constantly filling up. The culprit was misunderstood and therefore misconfigured Windows 10 Servicing Plans.

The Issue

If you haven’t run into this issue, let me have you imagine this scenario. You configured the Servicing Plan to download only the English packages. Unfortunately, you’re still downloading a lot of non-required and legacy updates. This fills up DPs, wastes bandwidth, and becomes a headache. Think of this common scenario. 60 English packages at I’d estimate at 2gigs each and probably at least 2 downloads per package.

60 packages * 2gb * 2 downloads = 240GB of Data. Oh, what fun! Do we really need all these updates? Fortunately, the answer is NO!

 

The Solution

Only down the languages and packages that require deployments! Simple right? Yes and No. This is because the interface for Windows 10 servicing is a little bit different than the Software Update Point (SUP) and WSUS interfaces we’ve been dealing with for years. When using the SUP interface and WSUS, when one chooses “English” on the Language page, only English updates are downloaded and distributed.

With the Windows 10 Servicing, a filter screen is presented, and one would easily imagine, only English Updates are downloaded. This is of course what happens when configuring SUP.

 

Well there is one little detail I didn’t put in my screenshot. In the bottom left of that window there is a Preview Button!

When you click the Preview button, you’ll notice that there is “EN-US” and “EN-GB”. Really!? Ok, I only want to download the “EN-US” and also don’t want to download any of the old legacy updates. This is what wastes a ton of space and bandwidth. How do I deal with this? We need to filter things a little bit further.

 

Reconfigure the Filter

As SCCM is constantly updating it’s information from the clients, we know what we want to search for to reduce our package size.

  1. Language – Only download the English language (This includes all EN-xx”)
  2. Title – Let’s filter this to just EN-xx
  3. Required – This is the secret sauce. I mentioned SCCM has the information. Let’s only download updates where 1 or more systems require it!

Update your filters, and keep clicking the preview button until you’ve got the updates required for your Servicing Plan.

 

Cleaning up the Old Headache

The simplest thing was to delete all the service plans and start over.

To do this:

  1. We look at the Servicing Plans
  2. Removed all Serving Plan deployments from the collections
  3. Deleted the Servicing Plans
  4. Deleted the updates within the Deployment Package(s)
  5. Deleted the Deployment Package(s)
  6. Went to the file share for each of the Deployment Packages
  7. Deleted any content within them

Create a New Service Plan and Monitor

Now that the clean up is complete, let’s start over and Create a new Windows 10 – Pilot (0 days) after deployment. Using the same criteria above for the Upgrades properties and search criteria, I’ve narrowed down the upgrade software that we will download and distribute from over 100 to just 4!

 

After you’ve created the proper filter and deployment package, it might take some time for the software to download. This is because by default, the Servicing Plan rule only runs after a SUP synchronization.

 

Before we right click and choose Run now, let’s open the ruleengine.log with CMTrace.exe on the Site System Server. Once the log is opened, right click and force the Service Plan rule evaluation by clicking run now.

 

Look at the snapshot of my log file. There are a few things to note in here.

  1. Highlighted in blue: The Servicing Rule that we’re processing.
  2. In the red box, this is the query the SCCM is running to find the updates for this rule. Notice that our criteria is tagged onto the end. (en-us) etc.
  3. The bottom arrow is pointing to the 4 updates. This will match the ones we found in our Preview while setting up the rule.
  4. Highlighted in yellow, The 4 updates will be placed in the Update Package that we defined

 

Now one thing I want to also note is on the file system, I have 8 updates in my Deployment Package. Now if you look in the log above, let’s take note of the last 4 lines. We have 4 updates to download and SCCM shows the rule criteria it found and the “ID” numbers. If you look just below that, you’ll notice that each ID number requires 2 downloads. The math now makes sense. 4 updates, that require 2 downloads equals 8 files.

 

I hope this helps troubleshoot or even shed some light on Windows 10 Servicing Plans.

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