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side by side migration task sequence

Hi Everyone,

I have a need to do a side by side migration and need some details about how the task sequence should look. currently I have everything in one task sequence and it is trying to image the source computer. I want to capture the user state and inventory and use the dynamic list to deploy the software from app portal to the new computer. I would love help to fix the task sequence to make it work properly. I did not see may details in the admin guide about the task sequence.


Maybe once I get that answer maybe the answer to the next part will be more obvious. Here is the next question in a side by side migration can the destination computer be bare metal? It says it is going to be imaged anyhow.


Thanks in advance as always. Everyone is a huge help!

(5) Replies

I'll start by saying I don't have any first-hand experience using a single task sequence for side-by-side migration scenarios, but I would expect that you would need to have some conditions on your task sequence steps (probably based on computer/task sequence variables) that would tell the running task sequence which device it's running on and therefore which steps to execute.  In other words, you would have a portion of the task sequence that is only to run on the source machine and has appropriate conditions that only allow it to run on the source machine, and then you would have a portion of the task sequence that is only to run on the destination machine and has appropriate conditions that only allow it to run on the destination machine.

I'll also point out that we do have a setting in the OS Deployment settings page where you specify "Use single task sequence for capture and deployment".  You'll need to make sure you select that option, but to be honest, since I've never done it with a single task sequence, I don't know what this option does other than to insert both machines into the same collection.  It's possible that it sets the source and destination computer variables for you, but I don't have any documentation on that (@CharlesW, are you able to tell by looking at the code if this option sets computer variables automatically?).

Regarding the bare metal question, we have an option to deploy to "unknown" machines, but I'm not aware of anyone (inside or outside Flexera) that has used that option.  Instead, if you select the side-by-side option when deploying an OSD task sequence, we prompt you for the source and destination machine names.  If the destination machine is not a known device, App Portal will reach out to SCCM through the ESDWebService and create a device object in SCCM for you (based on a MAC address or SMBIOS GUID that you provide for the target device).  It will then also set up the USMT association between the source and destination devices for you.  By pre-creating the computer object and placing it in the deployment collection, when you then boot that device (boot media or PXE), it will find the targeted task sequence and run it on that bare metal device.

One other thing I'll mention (even though you didn't ask) is that you can have non-OSD task sequences that simply backup/restore user data with USMT and install applications on the destination (based on computer variables).  In this case, you could migrate to a new device that has already been imaged with your standard OS image and simply migrate user data and applications without having to reimage the device.

Anything expressed here is my own view and not necessarily that of my employer, Flexera. If my reply answers a question you have raised, please click "ACCEPT AS SOLUTION".

Your last paragraph is useful thank you we will need that also. I do have the check box for Use single task sequence for capture and deployment check I kind of thought that would do the needed variables for me. I do appreciate your help! Maybe Charles can provide additional help with the side by side.

App Portal will set some variables based on the roles you have defined for the task sequence. Typically, it is necessary to know what variables your task sequence consumes, and define the appropriate variables in your role under the variables tab.. As you create the variables in App Portal, you can define if those variables should be set on the source device, target device, or both. I believe that if you enable USMT Profiles in your role, then App Portal will automatically know where to create the Scan State and Load State variables. One thing that I can say for certain is that App Portal will NOT interrogate the target task sequence to determine which variables need to be set for the task sequence..

Note: I know that there is an issue in App Portal 2018 and earlier where both the source and target devices will not be inserted into the install collection, in the case of a side-by-side OSD, even if you have "Use single task sequence for capture and deployment" selected. Only the target device will be added to the collection. As such, if you choose to use a single task sequence for OSD, then I would recommend upgrading to 2019 R1, if the side-by-side type is to used.

Charles thank you for the reply! we are on 2019R1

I feel like you know what we need. Also you are covering something I did not see in the guide or maybe I missed it. I feel like I should understand what you are talking about but I don't. Do you have better documentation on this some where? I don't have any roles I thought roles were for selecting software to deploy based on like a job role. I don't have any variables defined. We are using USMT in the task sequence. I will read about this as much as I can in the manual. if you have any additional documentation I would love to see it.


Thank you again for pointing me in the correct direction.

I don't really have any reference materials beyond what is in the admin guide... I'm sure that you have probably already seen this, but look at the section titled  Using Task Sequence Catalog Items to Perform OS and Application Deployment. And in particular, the section titled Using Roles to Identify Applications to Deploy with a Task Sequence Catalog Item.

If you want to see the variables which are actually being set, you have a couple of options... 

1. You can look at the ComputerVariable.log on the Config Mgr server (created by the ESD Web service), or the request log for the request (on the App Portal server). 

2. You can look directly at the device in the Config Mgr Console. You need to go to Devices, right click on the Device, and select properties.. Once the device properties dialog is displayed, go to the variables tab, and you will see the variables which have been set.. The following scree capture illustrates: