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Regarding Mac agent and Mac OS upgrades


We are running the latest on-prem Mac agents and FNMS server. We have odd thing going on. Each time Mac OS is updated, FNMS recreates the Inventory Device. In 5 days, 20% of the agents reports as "new" device and history is lost. Impossible to track anything and keep things up. Even if the Minor numbers are changed, its "new" like from 13.2.0 update to 13.2.1. Do we have some sort of configuration issue in our env?

(20) Replies

I guess I have to put more attractive headline to this 😛

Just check if after OS update. Serial number of device also gets changed. That could be reason for coming as new device.

Thanks for reply. These are Physical machines - so they do not change Serial Number. Otherwise we'd have lots of duplicates, weren't we? But we don't.

Can you explain some more. after OS upgrade, Flexera is creating complete new entry or its replacing old with new. 

Replacing old with new

See attached screen shot, no duplicates of Serial Number.  Tomorrow there will be more again.

Sometimes I get warning or two in Inventory Exceptions that there is a duplicate serial number, but when I go to All Inventory - nothings there.



Can you verify one device in JAMF if managed by it.  If you are finding history data there then i would suggest to raise one case with flexera for further investigation. 

Yes, they are all JAMF managed! I will investigate!

Please share your finding if any from jamf

Created a ticket, SLA is more than 24h 😛

Well, I discovered that Macs are recreated despite the OS upgrade. So yesterday 13.2.1 Macos new arrival marked "changed" is now "new" and "creation date" accordingly 1d++

Whattaheck, jamf?

in JAMF, is it showing same behavior & removing old history for record.



I got results from JAMF. JAMF records are consistent and continuous - no removals there. 

I guess I have to get support ticket opened...

Yes. That would be right path from here. Do let us know final result from case.

Did you find any solution from flexera?

Not yet. Problem is when your hostname and local hostname differ for a inventory device. When device is offline, its hostname is derived from "local hostname" and online its what was typed in the hostname. Depending on when the agent scans (device is online or not) its Flexera Inventory Device ping pongs between the two machines.

But there are other  oddities going on as well, but i will not go into those.

Workaround is to force hostname and local hostname to match. But thats not according to the Apple design I guess.  If that is a solution, it should be a prereq for FNMS Mac agent (or is it already, I have not checked :P)

We observed this on a SLES 11.4 physical server. The Hostname of the server was changed, and a new entry for new Hostname got created and old Hostname is no-where to be found. On the physical level, IP and Serial number remained unchanged, so kinda hint for spotting, however, on the FNMS DB level, the ComputerUID and AgentID in inventory DB is still the same.

Logically, if we have Hardware Assets linked to the inventory, the system shouldn't (ideally) be able to remove the old record, but instead track the change on "Changed device assets" page. On the same grounds, assumably, the history would not be lost. One may try to create an asset record from the inventory itself, without the need to get into import hassle, at least for testing purposes.

Have you tried this yet?

Are you saying "inventory device" history was lost when Linux hostname was renamed? Easy to tamper your device compliance history. 

Our Linuxes work without issues.

Actually, Device Compliance History can be tweaked otherwise as well, and with ease. But this is quite bad to get the old device completely wiped off and a new one taking its place with no history.

Old hostname is no-where in IM or CC. It's like it never existed, unless I missed to lookout at some place I should..!! IM.Computer_MT does have the AgentID same as in Old hostname's NDI, but with the new hostname, and this new hostname got its history starting the day it was renamed/created.

I have reasons to believe that this behavior got introduced in v.18. If in your control, try changing hostname of some such server and see how it reacts. If all your Linux's are working well, maybe they were not renamed.

OMG! Idea of the agent_id is to keep track of the agents despite the changes in the hw or os (hostname, serial, agent). Is should reside on the actual device filesystem and created by the installation process of the agent. This FNMS implementation seems very vague - you cant update your linux server (=reisntall), old device data is always wiped off. 

This means you have to go thru your licenses and allocations every single day - this is quite severe actually.