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Ghost images created on package servers go into 'checking package' and/or 'pending download', 'downloading' state after an update configuration occurs on the Symantec Management Agent (SMA)

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Article ID: 172092

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Updated On:

Products

Deployment Solution

Issue/Introduction

Ghost images created on package servers go into 'checking package' and/or  'pending download', 'downloading' state after an update configuration occurs on the Symantec Management Agent (SMA) causing significant delays in the processing of other tasks.  E.g Copy file, creation of PXE preboots are the main tasks affected as these tasks need to create/copy packages to/from the package server.
There isn't an error per se but all other processes on the package server are delayed until 'checking package' is complete.

Cause

Ghost images that are created directly on package servers are a special type of package called an 'external package'. In the current design, the hash for these packages is checked every time an 'update configuration' occurs on the Symantec Management Agent whether or not the contents of the package has changed.  

Because hashing of one 2gb image file takes approximately 30 seconds and image packages usually contain at least five 2gb files, a significant delay occurs when running the tasks noted in the situation section of this KB.  Considering customers have multiple images on a package server the delay can be quite extreme (At least 10 minutes ).  

Environment


All builds of DS 7.x/8.x

Resolution

Development is planning on having the owner of the external package create and maintain the hashes instead of the hashing being done each time an update configuration is requested. Hashing will only occur when the actual image changes - which is quite rare. This is a significant change and will take considerable time to address
 
Workarounds/Suggestions:
1. Set a high 'update configuration value' for the package server(s).  E.g 30 minutes or greater.  The higher the configuration value, the less likely that a task like 'Copy file' will occur when hashing (checking package) is taking place.
2. Install the SBS Service on a site server that DOES NOT also act as a Package Server. The reason for this is each time a PXE Preboot is created/recreated an update configuration is triggered and hashing begins. With the SBS Service on a separate site server, the update configuration will not occur on the Package Server and the packages needed by the PXE Preboot creation/recreation process can be immediately delivered to the site server acting as an SBS Server.
3. Import images created on Package Server to the NS using the Resource Import tool and remove the package from the Package Server.  The NS is now the source of the package and the image will replicate to the package server.  No hashing will occur on the image on the Package Server. This isn't a practical solution for customers that create images at a remote site
4. Create package servers that only store Ghost images. This will cut down on the occurrence of the issue.