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Unable to install PXE on device no longer targeted by CEM policy.

  • 1.  Unable to install PXE on device no longer targeted by CEM policy.

    Posted Dec 10, 2020 01:50 AM

    Hi all,

    Very strange issue on 8.5 RU3: we're trying to add Network Boot Services to an endpoint but the checkbox (in the Site Servers config panel) is greyed out. The device already hosts Package Services, and both Monitor and Task Services are available for installation, but NBS is not.

    We've removed all CEM policies from the machine and confirmed their removal in Agent diagnostics; we've disabled the CEM gateway policy, we've stopped the endpoint's Altiris Agent and cleared the existing policy XMLs, but the Cloud-enabled Management mode is enabled but inactive message remains, and the Console refuses to allow us to deploy NBS.

    This is the second machine we've seen demonstrate this behaviour; our solution the first time around was to uninstall the Agent (with /clean), then reinstall, and ensure CEM policy was never applied before deploying NBS. Eventually the checkbox became available - but we had to re-replicate the entirety of the package library to that machine, so I can't call it a workable solution.

    I've not seen this behaviour before and I can't find any reference to it online or in the known issues reports, unless I've missed something.

    As per this thread, prior versions up to and including 8.1 RU7 (our previous platform level) allowed machines to choose between CEM and non-CEM connections based on a single registry entry. We would use policy to switch between the two during the late after-hours to help expedite package replication over the public internet and not our extremely slow WAN links, but that stopped working after upgrading to 8.5 RU3, and I can't help but think these two issues are related.

    Has anyone encountered a similar circumstance? Was it fixable without blowing away the Agent and starting again?


    Tech Monkey/IT Primate

  • 2.  RE: Unable to install PXE on device no longer targeted by CEM policy.

    Posted Mar 22, 2021 07:50 PM
    Edited by deemacgee Mar 22, 2021 07:49 PM
    Hi all,

    We eventually found the cause: CEM connections were not automatically switching back to direct comms when "internal" (i.e. LAN/WAN) routes to the main Altiris server were identified.

    To rectify this, we had to enable diagnostic mode in the Agent, remove any CEM gateway server target in the Server Profiles tab, then (quickly) restart the Altiris Agent. Once restarted, the Agents would connect to the server via non-CEM routes, and after a short time, PXE services could again be deployed. A bit fiddly, but hopefully attended by the CEM improvements in Altiris 8.6.

    Tech Monkey/IT Primate