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New networked software install options for managed PCs

Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Sean O'Malley  

OIT currently is upgrading its centralized management software for Windows PCs. Once that upgrade is complete, the process for installing software over the network will be slightly different.  

If your computer is missing any critical updates when the upgrade takes place, those updates will be applied as part of the transition. There is a slight chance that this process could result in a forced reboot.

How to tell if your PC is affected

  1. Go to Control Panel. If you see a "Run Advertised Programs" option, then your PC will be moved to the new management software some time in the next few weeks. To make sure you aren't surprised by a reboot, run Windows Update on your computer at your earliest convenience. 

  2. Look in All Programs. If you see "Microsoft System Center 2012," then your PC is already using the new management software. You don't need to do anything. 

  3. If neither of the above items is present, then your PC is not centrally managed, and you can safely disregard the rest of this story. If you are a Mac user, you also may disregard this story.

New way to install software

To find Software Manager, look in All Programs, Microsoft System Center 2012, Configuration Manager.The university offers many software titles for use on centrally managed Windows computers. These used to be provided via a Control Panel called "Run Advertised Programs." Once your computer starts using the new management software, that Control Panel will be replaced by an entry under All Programs called Microsoft System Center 2012.

To see what is available for your computer with the new tool, go to:

All programs | Microsoft System Center 2012 | Configuration Manager | Software Center

If your computer doesn't yet have Software Center, check back in a week or two.

Automatic restarts during the change

If a Windows Update requires a restart, you will see this 15 minute countdown window.If your computer has not been kept up to date with critical Windows updates, there is a slight chance that you could receive a reboot countdown similar to the one pictured on the right.  

If you are away from your computer when a countdown begins, the restart will happen at the end of the countdown even if there are unsaved documents open. For this reason, we recommend always saving your work before stepping away from your computer.

You can avoid this issue altogether by running Windows Update and allowing it to install any critical updates it finds.

If you have questions

If you have any questions, please contact your departmental technician or the OIT Service Desk.

Related Links

Printable guide to SCCM changes (PDF)