What is the difference between the IAD file (Patch 6.2) and the IBD file (Patch 7.0)?

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Article ID: 181833

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Patch Management Solution for Windows

Issue/Introduction

 

Resolution

Question
What is the difference between the IAD inventory rule file (Patch 6.2) and the IBD inventory rule file (Patch 7.0)?

Answer
 

IAD vs IBD

 

This document is intended to explain the differences, between the current file used to by the Patch Management Inventory Rule Agent and the file that will be used with Patch 7.0. 

Patch Management Solution 6.2 uses an iad file type.

The InventoryRuleCache.iad is an XML file containing all available rules for enabled languages. 

Currently the size of an iad file for English only is approximately 9 meg.  This is multiplied by the amount of languages enabled.  For example a Notification Server with 10 languages enabled would create approximately a 90 meg iad file that will be downloaded and run, on every client running the Software Update Agent.

Disadvantages

1.      Size of the iad file.

2.      Because the iad file is a flat file it can become fragmented and require the entire file to be downloaded again.  This also causes it to be slower to parse.

3.      It is more intensive on the client, causing performance issues that may be noticeable to the end user of the computer.  Commonly takes over 20 minutes to run.

4.      Potentially large amount of network traffic, when there is a new PMImport and the client computers must download the full iad file again.

Settings available for the iad file are

1.      <cacheFileFragmentationThreshold>200</cacheFileFragmentationThreshold> - This setting determines how many modifications must be made to the IAD file before a defragmentation occurs.  Value is in number of modifications (writes/deletes).

2.      <defragIntervalDays>7</defragIntervalDays> - This setting determines how many days must pass before the IAD file is defragmented.  This setting and the threshold setting above are evaluated using the OR logic; meaning; if the IAD file has more than 200 modifications OR more than 7 days have passed, then the file will be defragmented.  Value is in days.

3.      <sleepBetweenRules>200</sleepBetweenRules> - This setting determines the amount of time the Inventory Rule Agent should "sleep" in between rule evaluations.  Increasing this value will cause less CPU and I/O activity; however, it will cause the Patch Inventory scans to take longer to complete.  Value is in milliseconds (ms).

Tools used to help troubleshoot and view the iad file or Inventory process

1.      Single rule evaluator (EvaluateSingleInventoryRule.exe and Test Inventory Rule.htm).  This is used to force a single inventory rule to run.  When trace logging is enabled this simplifies the process of evaluating the checks done in an inventory rule.

2.      Iad file viewer (InventoryRulesViewer.exe).  This tool makes it possible to browse through the iad file much easier than looking at the file through Notepad or Internet Explorer.

3.      Verbose and trace logging.  More logging often means easier troubleshooting and quicker time to resolution.

4.      Aexpatchutil is a utility to provided to perform common agent processes.  The /i forces inventory to be run then sent depending on settings defined for inventories.

 

 

Patch Management Solution 7.0 uses an ibd file type.

The InventoryRuleCache.ibd file is a SQLite database containing only the amount of rules required to fully inventory a client computer.  This accomplished by creating families for rules.  Families of rules mean, there will be a set amount of rules for key Microsoft components, like (Operating systems, Office versions, .net versions etc.).  After determining the Software and operating system installed, the client will request only the additional families of rules that apply to that computer.

Advantages

1.      Smaller file size

2.      Faster inventory process

3.      Smaller amount of traffic on the network

4.      Less intensive on the server

5.      Less impact on client computers.  The inventory process generally only takes a few seconds but should not be more than a few minutes (unless there are environmental issues).

6.      The ibd file does not require defragmentation

 

Settings available for the ibd file

 

1.      <sleepBetweenRules>200</sleepBetweenRules> - This setting determines the amount of time the Inventory Rule Agent should "sleep" in between rule evaluations.  Increasing this value will cause less CPU and I/O activity; however, it will cause the Patch Inventory scans to take longer to complete.  Value is in milliseconds (ms).

Tools used to troubleshoot

1.      SQLite Database Browser.exe is the tool that will be used to open and browse through the ibd file.  It allows queries to be run against the data base and shows the tables in the database.

2.      Verbose and trace logging.  More logging often means easier troubleshooting and quicker time to resolution.

3.      Aexpatchutil is a utility to provided to perform common agent processes.  The /i forces inventory to be run then sent depending on settings defined for inventories.