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SCCM 2012 - Extract Task Sequence XML from Stand Alone Media

Posted on 2016-09-06
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Last Modified: 2016-09-26
Hi Everyone:

I had created a SCCM 2012 - OSD Task Sequence and then created a USB stand alone media to deploy onto a few laptops.  Unfortunately, the SCCM 2012 server was in my lab environment and it crashed.

I was looking to see if any one knows how I can I obtain the SCCM 2012 - Task Sequence XML file from my SCCM - OSD stand alone media?

I am open to any ideas or suggestions even if it is many steps.

Thank you!
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Question by:rmessing171
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by:Mike T
ID: 41787555
Hi,

The final is on the USB but it's not going to be any good to you if you want to read it as it's encrypted/encoded for security - MS don't want anyone to copy your TS and us it anywhere, or indeed read the content as it might well have passwords embedded.

What problem are you trying to solve? Do you want to recover your TS or just extract a command or two?

Mike
PS: does the USB work OK?
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Author Comment

by:rmessing171
ID: 41787818
Hi Mike,

Thank you for reaching out to me!

You read my mind, I would like to recover the entire TS with the associated program command lines.

Is there a way to do this?

Thank you again for your assistance!
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Author Comment

by:rmessing171
ID: 41787820
Yes, the USB works find, I would just like to reproduce the TS back into my rebuilt SCCM 2012 Console.
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:Mike T
ID: 41788048
Hi,
I just double checked and the TS is saved in <Drive>:\SMS\Policy.xml.
The bad news is that it is indeed binary not text.

The good news is that you can recover *some* (probably the key ones) from the logs.

Look in the path C:\windows\ccm\logs

FILE
execmgr.log  - This contains ALL MSI command lines you may run if you use packages
AppEnforce.log  - same as above if you use Applications.
smsts.log  - this contains ALL steps, but won't contain the MSI commands for obvious reasons; it does have some commands though that you can piece together;

filtering will help immensely

Appenforce.log        Executing command line
execmgr.log             Running
smsts.log                 Executing command line
                                Start executing an instruction

The latter will give a pure list of ALL steps you had in your TS, but without the detail - i.e. just the title of each step. It's handy to save and print out and then you can follow your TS along as having 200 odd steps get a bit hard to remember.

I don't know of any other way. You *might* be able to import the TS from the USB into your new CM site. It's not something I've tried and I doubt MS would let you for security reasons.

I hope that helps.

Tip I learnt: Export your TS often from the console and then save a copy elsewhere. There's too much work to lose.

Mike
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Mike T earned 500 total points (awarded by participants)
ID: 41788053
PS: when I said filtering I meant within CMTrace. Is there any *other* tool :P ?
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:Mike T
ID: 41815722
There is NO way to recover a TS - it is encoded/encrypted by MS on purpose. The only solution is to piece it together from the step in the logs as detailed in my answer.
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