How does the package download process work with the Altiris Agent?
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How does the package download process work with the Altiris Agent?


Article ID: 180314


Updated On:


IT Management Suite




Let's say that we have "packageA" with "my.exe" that needs to go to your Site Server/Package Server and then to the client machines on the assigned Sites to that Site Server/Package Server.
Then days later, you modify the "packageA" with a newer version of the "my.exe" file

1. When there is a new "my.exe" version for "packageA", does the Site Server/Package Server delete the old file and then download the new file? Or keeps the old file in the cache folder until the new file is downloaded?
2. What happens if the old file is already downloading on a client machine, does it stop the download process and delete what was downloaded on the client machine? Or keep downloading until it is done and then replace the old file with the new one?
3. What happens if the old "my.exe" is in use (like it is open by the user), will it delay in getting the new version downloaded and replaced until we close the file?


  • When a package is detected as changed by the NS it updates the SWDPackage table with a new version number, this version number is then put into the client configs of both the package server and the agents. 
  • When the Site Server/Package Server gets a client config and there is a new version number it removes the shares and virtual directory in IIS for that package, it then downloads the new package files and replaces them, no backup is kept. 
  • When the Agent gets the new package version notification it will do the following:
    • If it already has the package and does not need to run it again it will do nothing. 
    • If it already has the package and needs to run it again, it will download the new version at the scheduled run time. 
    • If it does not have the package and needs to run it, then at the scheduled run time it will request that package version from the Site Server/Package Server, but will not get the package if the Site Server/Package Server does not have the correct version - this is to prevent situations where the Site Server/Package Server has not updated the client config since the package change but the agent has.

At no time do we delete any files, they are simply overwritten.  We also never keep a cache of old files.  Package files are determined if they are new or correct by size and date of last change, not by a hash.


Additional Information

Symantec Management Agent (Altiris Agent) Package Download