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Patch Remedy 4 Windows10 Upgrade explained.

Support and question forum for Patch Remedy WUA plugin for LabTech
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Cubert
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Patch Remedy 4 Windows10 Upgrade explained.

Post by Cubert » Thu Mar 29, 2018 2:04 pm

How to use the Windows 10 Version Upgrader in Patch Remedy

We will be describing in the following posts how to use the Windows 10 Upgrade features in the latest Patch Remedy 4.

As of Patch Remedy 4, Plugins4Automate has added a new feature that allows the MSP to upgrade older versions of Windows 10 to the latest version available. There are 2 possible ways to deploy the Windows 10 upgrades, the first way is by selecting the Windows 10 agent(s) from the Windows 10 Upgrade data view and selecting to Upgrade OS now. This will schedule the upgrade script to start on the end agent(s) over the next few minutes. The second way is to select to enable OS upgrades on agent(s) which will cause Patch Remedy on next cycle to launch the upgrade process automatically.

There are some basic setups Patch Remedy will need to get started upgrading Windows 10. You will need to create 2 ISO files from the Media Creation Tool located here https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/softwar ... windows10/. You will need to create a 32bit and a 64bit ISO and have each named differently from the other. You will need to have caching share setup at each client location, this is a network share that all agents can access at a given location. We will use this cache location to store the ISO files. During the automated process, Patch Remedy will look at all the agents at a given location set to auto upgrade and will pick one agent to start the process on and the rest of the agents it holds back for 50 minutes. This allows the first agent to download the ISO to the location share, caching it for all the other agents. 50 minutes later the rest of the agents will start looking to see if the ISO is on the network share and if so they will pull that file in and start the upgrades, else the next agent will attempt the downloads until the ISO is present.

Once the ISO is available the agent(s) will mount the ISO and transfer the files to the local system. The process validates that the files exist locally to the agent, then prompts the user if an active desktop is detected. The user will get a total of 3 possible messages. The first is a pop up message on a timer (90 sec) asking if it is OK to upgrade OS at this time. The user must select yes for any upgrades to proceed. If the user selects no, the script will stop and it will be logged in the plugin that user denied update. If the user selects yes, then they will get another popup on a timer (90 sec), asking them to close all open windows and applications. Afterwards a custom splash screen message screen will appear with the MSPs logo and a message from the MSP. This splash screen can be closed by going into task manager on agent and killing the mshta process.

The upgrade will reboot the computer during the upgrade and once the user logs back in the final upgrade setups will complete and the system will now be on Windows 10 latest versions.

Either way you deploy the upgrade (Automation or Manually) the upgrade process is the same and the responses will be the same. All actions get logged in the plugin's log viewer for each agent.

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Re: Patch Remedy 4 Windows10 Upgrade explained.

Post by Cubert » Thu Mar 29, 2018 2:56 pm

The setup


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We first need to open Patch Remedy and go to the Windows 10 Upgrade tab. Find the GEAR in the right side of plugin and select it. That will launch the setup form where you will add all the configurations needed to support the upgrade process.

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The configuration form needs to have the names of the 3 ISO files, 32 and 64 bit made from the media creation tool available from Microsoft and WIndows 10 Enterprise if you are going to upgrade Enterprise agents. You have 2 options for file transfers from CW Automate to the end agent. The default way will be to store the ISO files on the LTShare at \\LTShare\Transfers\Software\Windows10\. The second way is to place ISO files on the Internet at a web URL accessible from anywhere. If you supply a URL then you will disable the use of the LTShare in the plugin. The LTShare may not be accessible to all Clients and all Locations so URL is the preferred method to deliver the ISO files.

The User Message Image and User Message allows you to customize the splash screen the end user sees during upgrades "if" an active desktop is found during an upgrade attempt. You can supply a URL of a logo image and HTML encoded text to create a really nice splash screen for your end users. If nothing is supplied then we use the default Patch Remedy logo and a simple message directing them to helpdesk if any troubles.


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As explained above, Patch Remedy caches the ISO files so you do not flood the local networks of your clients with hundreds of ISO downloads from the agents being upgraded. For this process to work you will need to have the cache share configured for each "client location" you want to process upgrades at. If you supply a username and password in the provided fields then we will use those to attempt authentication of the NAS or remote share.


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Once we have all our setups completed we are ready to start deploying Windows 10 upgrades. Select 1 or more agents from the list of Windows 10 agents and then right click mouse to reveal menu. There are 3 menu items for Upgrading Windows 10, Enable / Disable Automated OS Upgrade, Attempt OS Upgrade Now and View Upgrade Log.

To enable an OS upgrade on the next patch remedy cycle select to enable the upgrade from the menu. To start an upgrade now, select the attempt OS upgrade now menu item and to view the log entry for any agent in the process of or finished and upgrade process select the view upgrade logs.


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The agent upgrade log view shows the time of the attempted install and the verified completed date. it will also show you the current status of the logs. In this case we have successfully installed the upgrade to a 32 bit agent.

***If you are using the automation feature of the upgrade process and any attempt fails the automation will not retry that system until the Last Attempt time stamp is NULLed out. If at anytime a Last Attempt date can be viewed here Automation is disabled.*** Use the Reset Upgrade button to NULL out the Last Attempt Date if you want to allow agent to attempt another automated upgrade.

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Re: Patch Remedy 4 Windows10 Upgrade explained.

Post by Cubert » Thu Mar 29, 2018 3:22 pm

The Process



The process is script based. The Patch Remedy Maintenance script handles the upgrade process. Following the script logs on the agents console

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The script can be monitored here for different statues. After the script gets to the final install point and executes the installer the script goes into a 4 hour sleep. This sleep allows the agent to reboot if needed and fully complete the upgrades before the script wakes backup and checks to see if the version is now showing up to date. The script will check the version and will log the results.

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Re: Patch Remedy 4 Windows10 Upgrade explained.

Post by Cubert » Wed Apr 04, 2018 4:33 pm

How To Setup a Hosted URL for your ISO files


You can self host your files on the Labtech server via a URL.
We placed our ISO image on the LT server at
C:\inetpub\wwwroot\WCC2\Images\myISO.iso

and can access it via URL
http://your.LTHOSTName.com/WCC2/Images/myISO.iso

So in the PR config the url would be http://your.LTHOSTName.com/WCC2/Images and your 64bit file would be named myISO.iso. We picked the image folder on the LT server as an example but based on your setups it can be any folder you want it to be in that is reachable via IIS's default website configurations.


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Re: Patch Remedy 4 Windows10 Upgrade explained.

Post by Cubert » Wed Apr 04, 2018 4:54 pm

How to manager remote agents not able to access a network share


If you have remote desktops or laptops in the field that do not have access to the Location Drive then you will need to regroup these agents under a new location. Call your new client location RemoteAgents and set the Location Drive as so. Then move all remote agents to this new location. All agents in this location will now use the \\localhost\C$ admin share as the Location Drive. Of course agents will need the admin share active.

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In the Location Drive box use
\\localhost\C$\Windows\LTSvc\PatchRemedy
This will cause the agent to download the ISO to the patch remedy working directory where it should then be unpacked and the installs can continue.

The end agents will need 10 GB of free drive space on C to complete the unpacking. (4.5 GB iso file and 5 GB unpacked install directory)

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