Monday, January 19, 2009

Unable to import AI license file

So our software licensing team asked about using SCCM's Asset Intelligence to track software license usage at our company. After going through all of our normal internal testing we were ready to import our xml formated license file into our site. However when we tried to import it on our production server we received a single message:


Unable to connect to the site database

Not very useful since my console and site server were obviously talking to the site database just fine. I spent many hours troubleshooting this one myself before calling Premier support. At which time I spent many more hours troubleshooting on the phone with them and fearing that the issue would be unresolved. We went through all kinds of troubleshooting of both my SQL server setup and my site server setup.

The only error message with any meaning behind it was when we tried to run the import manually:

D:\SMSPROV\bin\i386>mvlsimport.exe /file //server/share/MSLtest.xml

Failed to get Site Database configuration information.Failed to get Site Database connection.Failed to intialize.

Yes, those are forward slashes, per explicit instructions by Microsoft Support.

My gut told me it was a bug in SCCM, but how my site differed eluded both me and Microsoft support. Ultimately, by sheer luck a stumbled across the steps that would enable me to reproduce the bug on my own. My site had an unrelated hardware failure and I had to rebuild and recover it. As I rebuilt it I tried the import several times along the way, until it finally failed. Once I was able to reproduce the bug I let Microsoft know how my site differed from a working site. Turns out there is a bug importing the license file if the smsprovider is installed on another computer other than the site server. Support was then finally able to confirm that this was a bug that they could reproduce and would notify the development team. In the absence of an actual fix, they provided me with a workaround. The workaround is to export the sql node of the sms registry key from the site server and import it onto the smsprovider computer. If you are switching architecture you will have to update the key to compensate for wow6432node as well.

Export this key from your 32-bit site server: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SMS\SQL Server]

Import this key into your 32-bit smsprovider computer.

Or, if your provider is 64-bit, find and replace \software\Microsoft\ with \software\wow6432node\Microsoft

Key will now be in this format:


Now import the new key onto your 64-bit smsprovider computer.

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