Delete unused Software Update Packages and clean up disk space.

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Article ID: 171321

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Updated On:

Products

Patch Management Solution for Windows

Issue/Introduction

The Package Server hard drive is full and space needs to free up on the Package Server hard drive by remove unneeded patch packages.

Resolution

Work through the following process to delete unwanted Software Update Packages to clear disk space on the SMP Server, Site/Package Servers and Endpoint Clients:

  1. Confirm the Software Bulletin is no longer needed in the environment:
    • Console > Reports > All Reports > Software > Patch Management > Compliance > Windows Compliance by Bulletin, Computer or Update
      • Note those that are at 100% and if they are part of any parameters that would like to be removed (e.g. older year no longer being deployed due to Service Pack upgrade to images covering vulnerabilities)
    • Console > Reports > All Reports > Software > Patch Management > Software Bulletins > Windows Superseded Bulletins
      • Note those that have been Superseded as they will no longer target or be applicable to Clients per TECH127440
         
  2. Disable associated Software Update Policies to those noted in Step #1:
    • In the Console > Manage > Policies > Software >  Patch Management > Software Update Policies > Windows (or the relevant OS policies for Red Hat / SUSE)
    • Right click the affected Software Update Policy > Disable
      • Note: This may be performed on multiple Software Update Policies by selecting the main Windows Folder in the left pane, using CTRL-Click or Shift-Click in the grid on the right pane, multiple policies can be highlighted, then right-click > Disable
      • Wait at least 2 days after disablement, for the targeted Clients need to run the Update Configuration process and receive the change in status, before deleting the policy - Note - If you do not delete the policy after disabling it the clean up process will not work.
         
  3. Disable the Software Bulletins noted in Step#1:
    • In the Console > Actions > software > Patch Remediation Center:
      • Right-click on the noted Software Bulletin (e.g. MS10-084) & select Disable
        • Note: Using CTRL-Click or Shift-Click in the grid on the right pane, multiple Bulletins can be highlighted, then right-click > Disable
        • Click Refresh to make sure the Bulletin Staged status = False 
  4. Clean-up the physical Software Update Packages:
    • Open Console > Manage > Jobs and Tasks > System Jobs and Tasks > Software > Patch Management > Check Software Update Package Integrity Job
      • Run this with a one-time schedule and enable the setting Delete the downloaded packages that are no longer in use
      • This process will physically clean-up the physical Software Update Packages on the SMP Server's at the default directory: C:\Program Files\Altiris\Patch Management\Packages\Updates
        • Note that this location may be modified on the Console > Settings > All Settings > Software > Patch Management > Core Services; To Location: setting
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  5. Site/Package Server Clean up: Allow for the NS.Package Refresh, and other standard scheduled tasks to run on the SMP Server (generally scheduled through the night), for those processes will clear the Software Update Package code bases from the SMP in the database and the Site/Package Servers will clean up any packages when synchronized with the SMP Server.
    • Note: The 'NS Package Refresh' can be manually executed from the SMP Server:
      • Server 2003: Server Manager > Configuration > Task Scheduler > Task Scheduler Library
      • Server 2012: Server Manager > Tools > Task Scheduler > Task Scheduler Library
    • Advisory: The synchronization between the SMP Server and Site/Package Servers should clear the unused Software Update Packages; however, the Site Server package clean-up schedule may hold packages for that duration
      • Configuration on the Console > Settings > All Settings > Notification Server > Site Server Settings > Package Service > Package Service Settings; Delete package files if they are unused for 'SET OPTION' dropdown
      • Caution: DO NOT set to '0 Days' as that will delete the packages immediately following download on the End-point Clients, and also deletes the update packages on Site/Package Servers when the NS.Package Refresh scheduled task runs and syncs up to the SMP Server
      • View HOWTO56242 - Section 7 for more details regarding configurations of Software Update Packages on the End-point Clients

If this process fails to clear out the Software Update Packages; please review troubleshooting this process on TECH183806.

Note: Disabling Vendors & Software on the Import Patch Data for Windows (PMImport), and running the PMImport with the setting Delete previously downloaded data for vendors, software and languages that are now excluded enabled will not clean-up the Software Update Packages, but it does clean-up the Software Update Policies for that specific Vendor. However, the packages will be cleaned-up on the next run of the Check Software Update Package Integrity job execution provided the setting Delete the downloaded packages that are no longer in use is enabled.

Optional: The following processes are each a separate optional method for Update Package management moving forward, for the automatic process to remove unused packages from Package Servers (not the NS/SMP server) if the packages are set to Assign packages to package servers automatically with manual prestaging:

  • Configure existing Software Update Policies so their individual 
    • Open an old Software Update policy
    • Go to the Advanced tab
    • Click the link under Package for the Advertisement to be managed
    • Go to the Package Servers tab
    • Choose Assign package to: Package Servers automatically with manual prestaging
    • Click Save Changes
    • Note: Repeat this process for every package in every policy that needs to be cleaned up from Package Servers as needed and note that this process is for one-off updates and not global for they can be time-consuming
       
  • Configure the Windows Patch Remediation Settings globally:
    • Go to Settings>Software>Patch Management>Windows Settings>Windows Patch Remediation Settings
    • Go to Packages tab
    • Chose Assign package to: Package Servers automatically with manual prestaging
    • Click Save Changes
    • Note: This will manage each package moving forward on all newly created Software Update Policies