ConfigMgr MaxExecutionTime Guesses for Updates

There is a situation which MIGHT happen for you.  The default for Cumulative Updates is, I believe 60 minutes now.  But many updates are still defaulting to 10 minutes.  I don't personally think that default should change, however, occasionally there are large updates (think Microsoft Office updates) which might be several hundred GB in size, and might take more than 10 minutes to install.  In your reporting, and when looking at local logs, the CM client says the install "Failed", but all you do is a re-scan for updates, and CM says it's installed.  So what gives, you wonder?  Well, this could be a possible reason.  It's not that the install 'failed' per se.  But after 10 minutes, the CM client stopped 'watching for' the successful install.  It timed out kind of.  Since I noticed a pattern that "it's usually when those updates are ginormous, they take longer to install", below is a POSSIBLE sql query to perhaps help you find and adjust the "Max Execution Timeout" on any individual updates.

A couple of pre-requisites.  Naturally, the content has to be downloaded. So if you run this 5 minutes after a "hotfix Tuesday" sync, it might not have much to say.  Because the content hasn't been downloaded to calculate "how big" any particular update is.  So you do have to wait until your content is downloaded to track these down.

Also note that I haven't created any kind of "powershell script" to automatically adjust the Max Execution Timeout.  This is just a report, and the admin would either posh-script changing each individual update, or use the console, find each update, right-click on it and in properties for that update, adjust up the max Execution Timeout to fit.

Also note these "suggestions" are just that, suggestions.  There is no right or wrong answer for how long Max Execution Timeout should be.  Leaving it all alone as-is with no changes from what you have will still work just fine.  One of the problems you may encounter might discourage you from touching or doing anything with this at all could be this following scenario...  Here's the scenario where following these suggestions would be a big bad horrible idea.  Let's say you allow your devices to have a service window every night for 4 hours.  Then you follow these suggestions, and for whatever reason, there were 8 different Office updates, and you changed them all from 10 minutes to 60 minutes each... for a total of 8 hours estimated time to install.  A client, when it gets the Software Update deployment, when it used to think "ok, these 8 will take me 80 minutes, I can do that in my 4 hour window, let's start!".  It'll start installing, and maybe it only gets 3 done... but it does get 3 done.  If you set them to 60 minutes each, the client might decide "wow, 8 hours... I can't do that in my service window... I'll just wait until I have 8+ hours to get this done".  and of course... it may never install any of them.  So be careful in deciding whether or not this is a potentially BAD idea, for your environment.  Or at least be aware of the potential repercussions, so you know what to un-do.

What this sql does, is list for Updates released in the last 30 days, and content has been downloaded, kind of look at the maxexecutiontime set, vs. how big the content is.  and if, for example, the content size is between 50 and 100mb, but it's maxexecutiontime isn't 20 minutes or more, then maybe you the admin might want to think about making MaxExecutionTime on that specific update to be 20 minutes--so you don't get false "I failed to install" reports which a re-scan will address.

Again... this isn't perfect.  It's just a possible suggestion, if you maybe have seen this behavior in your Software Updates deployments, and were wondering if there was a way to be pro-active about increasing the MaxExecutionTime without waiting for your reports to tell you the next day.

DECLARE @StartDate datetime = DateADD(Day, -30, GETDATE())
DECLARE @EndDate datetime = GetDate()

;with cte as (select ui.MaxExecutionTime/60 [Max ExecutionTime in Minutes], ui.articleid, ui.title, ui.DateLastModified, ui.DatePosted
,ui.IsSuperseded, ui.IsExpired
,(SUM(files.FileSize)/1024)/1 as [Size in KB]
,(SUM(files.FileSize)/1024/1024)/1 as [Size in MB]
from v_updateinfo ui
join v_UpdateContents content on content.CI_ID=ui.CI_ID
join vCI_ContentFiles files on files.Content_ID=content.Content_ID
where severity is not null
and content.ContentProvisioned = 1
and ui.dateposted between @StartDate and @EndDate
and ui.IsExpired = 0
group by ui.MaxExecutionTime, ui.articleid, ui.title, ui.DateLastModified, ui.dateposted, ui.IsSuperseded, ui.IsExpired
)

select
Case when cte.[Size in MB] < 50 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >= 10 then 0
when cte.[Size in MB] BETWEEN 50 and 100 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >= 20 then 0
when cte.[Size in MB] between 100 and 150 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >= 30 then 0
when cte.[Size in MB] between 150 and 200 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >= 40 then 0
when cte.[Size in MB] between 200 and 250 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >= 50 then 0
when cte.[Size in MB] between 250 and 300 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >= 60 then 0
when cte.[Size in MB] > 300 and cte.[Max ExecutionTime in Minutes] >=90 then 0
else 1
End as [Could use MaxExecutionTime Adjustment],
case when cte.[Size in MB] < 50 then '10 minutes'
when cte.[Size in MB] BETWEEN 50 and 100 then '20 minutes'
when cte.[Size in MB] between 100 and 150 then '30 minutes'
when cte.[Size in MB] between 150 and 200 then '40 minutes'
when cte.[Size in MB] between 200 and 250 then '50 minutes'
when cte.[Size in MB] between 250 and 300 then '60 minutes'
when cte.[Size in MB] > 300 then '90 minutes'
end as 'time to set'
, cte.*

from cte
order by [Could use MaxExecutionTime Adjustment] desc, [Time to set] desc

CMCB, SQL

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