How Preferred Distribution Points and Fallback is working in Configuration Manager 2012

Posted: May 8, 2012 in System Center Configuration Manager 2012
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When you create a distribution point, you have the option to assign boundary groups to the distribution point. The distribution points are preferred for clients that are within a boundary group that is assigned to the distribution point. When a client requests a content location, the management point will send the client a list of the preferred distribution points that have the requested content. When there more than one distribution points on the list, the following logic is used to determine what distribution point the client should connect to first.

1. Network boundaries

     a. AD Site

     b. Other types of boundaries, such as IP address

2. Forest trust

3. HTTP locations

     a. HTTPs (SSL) locations are ordered higher up

     b. HTTP locations (non-SSL) are ordered below

4. SMB locations

If there are 2 distribution points that are in the same category above, a distribution point is selected at random.

When there are no preferred distribution points, and the client falls back to a fallback distribution point, the following logic is used to determine what distribution point the client should connect to:

1. Forest trust

2. HTTP locations

     a. HTTPs (SSL) locations are ordered higher up

     b. HTTP locations (non-SSL) are ordered below

3. SMB locations

If there are 2 distribution points that are in the same category above, a distribution point is selected at random.

When on-demand distribution is configured, depending on the settings that you configure, the client might not go to a fallback distribution point, but instead the content might be downloaded to the preferred distribution point. You can read more on that in the On-Demand Content Distribution section of the Planning for Content Management in Configuration Manager topic.

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Comments
  1. Ian R says:

    Thanks I’ve been looking for this info, it isn’t clearly documented on the MS site.
    When you say HTTP locations are second after AD site / Subnet…is this determined by package settings (download or run from server) download using BITS or HTTP run from server using SMB?

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