ITMS Administrator Group

Frequently Asked Questions for peer-to-peer downloading in IT Management Suite 

08-21-2017 06:00 AM

Below you find some questions that users ask most often about peer-to-peer downloading feature in IT Management Suite. If you have questions that are not answered here, add them to the comments.

  1. Does HTTP(s) package transfer use the BITS process?
    HTTP(s) package transfer does not use the BITS process.
  2. Does peer-to-peer use HTTP or UNC package transfer?
    Peer-to-peer engine uses HTTP only. Peer computers share the content using HTTP.
  3. Is the Maximum number of requests per core setting actually per CPU core of the file provider?
    Maximum number of requests per core option lets you specify the number of HTTP requests that Symantec Management Agent's HTTP server processes. The rest of the requests will wait.
  4. If a peer-to-peer download is interrupted by the file provider going off-line, what does the file receiver's agent do regarding that package, how does it go about getting the file?
    The agent goes back to DHT and tries to find another file provider. However, note that Symantec Management Agent looks for all the peers just once during one download attempt.
  5. How to keep agents from reaching outside their site for peer-to-peer packages? What is the expected behavior?
    In peer-to-peer downloading, the Symantec Management Agent does not use any information of the subnet/site tree that you can see in the Symantec Management Console. The agent only communicates to the peers that are available in the networks where computer's network adapters are connected to. The agent is not able to communicate to the computers located in the subnets that are not directly available.
  6. Is there a way to limit the number of computers that contact a computer for a peer-to-peer download (is that what the setting #3 does)?
    There are two settings:
    1) Maximum number of connections option is peer-to-peer “server” side. This option lets you limit the number of clients that can download a file from a peer or can perform peer-to-peer requests to that peer.
    2) Maximum number of peers per download attempt option is peer-to-peer “client” side. This option lets you limit the number of peers the Symantec Management Agent tries to download the file from.
  7. Is there a way to exclude a specific computer from being a peer-to-peer target for other computers within a site where peer-to-peer is enabled?
    The peer-to-peer feature does not have exclusion logic built in but one of the workarounds is to clone the Targeted Agent Settings, enable peer-to-peer and apply it only to the desired list of client computers.
  8. Does peer-to-peer download feature use TCP or UDP during the downloads. Does the system switch based on if one is available or not?
    UDP is only used for the broadcast and for the creation of the DHT network. TCP is used for the rest of the communication and file transfer amongst peers.

For more information about the peer-to-peer downloading, see the following knowledge base article:

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09-21-2018 08:41 AM

to add to this...

my only biggest concern is... has anyone done any testing, monitoring the machines to see resources used? Our machines are heavily used and we will not use P2P just in case it hurts our machines performance.

03-26-2018 06:38 AM

I referred to what can be done for example with the Alitiris Agent using VBS like there are examples under ...\Altiris ASDK\Samples\Altiris Agent\VBS:

' SYMANTEC:     Copyright (c) 2017 Symantec Corporation. All rights reserved.
' The Licensed Software and Documentation are deemed to be commercial computer software as defined
' in FAR 12.212 and subject to restricted rights as defined in FAR Section 52.227-19 "Commercial
' Computer Software - Restricted Rights" and DFARS 227.7202, Rights in "Commercial Computer Software
' or Commercial Computer Software Documentation", as applicable, and any successor regulations,
' whether delivered by Symantec as on premises or hosted services.  Any use, modification, reproduction
' release, performance, display or disclosure of the Licensed Software and Documentation by the U.S.
' Government shall be solely in accordance with the terms of this Agreement.
' Setup management objects
set agent = CreateObject("Altiris.AeXClient")
set psagent = agent.ClientPolicyMgr.ClientAgent( "Altiris.AeXNSCPkgSvr" )

' RefreshPackages
'wscript.Echo "RefreshPackages"
'wscript.Echo "Method complete"

... I guess the command-line features will do the job as well. I will have a look at them.



03-26-2018 04:44 AM

I'm not sure if this answers your question, but there is peer-to-peer command-line interface available via aexagentutil.exe or aexnsagent.exe

03-22-2018 04:34 AM

Are there any "new" methods available in the Altiris Agent when peer-to-peer is enabled to call like it is possible when you have the package server agent installed. Example from Package Server agent: RefreshPackages, ResendPackagesStatus...?

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