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Microsoft KB Archive/175526

From BetaArchive Wiki

Article ID: 175526

Article Last Modified on 10/27/2006


  • Microsoft Systems Management Server 1.2 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q175526


You may find it necessary to modify the default 'User Information' MIF Entry form that is supplied with Systems Management Server. This form is stored in the Uinfo.xnf file and can be modified using the Systems Management Server MIF Form Generator application, which is supplied with Systems Management Server.

Because this file is part of a normal Systems Management Server client installation, modifying the existing form instead of simply creating a new form keeps you from continually redistributing a custom form after new Systems Management Server clients are installed.

Ideally, this procedure should be accomplished prior to deploying Systems Management Server in a production environment. If this is done after the Systems Management Server client has been installed on users' workstations, several additional steps are required to ensure that it is done properly.


NOTE: Applying Systems Management Server service packs will overwrite the modified files. Save a backup copy of the changes and manually update the files after applying the latest service pack.

The master copy of the Uinfo.xnf file is stored in the following directory:


Microsoft recommends that you modify a copy of this file, rather than the file in this location. After you create and save the final version of the form, place it in this directory.

The following steps show the best procedure for modifying this file and distributing it to your Systems Management Server clients:

Customizing the Form

  1. Copy the Uinfo.xnf file from the directory noted in the previous section to a working directory.
  2. Start the Systems Management Server MIF Form Generator and open the Uinfo.xnf file or create a new one.
  3. Enter or modify the Form Name.

NOTE: If the Systems Management Server client has already been deployed in the network environment, and users have already filled out the default User Information form, then do not use User Information as the Form Name. Use User Data or Client Information or something similar instead. Systems Management Server uses the form name to define the group class and SQL tables in the Systems Management Server database.

  1. Configure the rest of the MIF form as needed.

NOTE: Consulting with others is an excellent idea to help determine what information is going to be requested from the users. Planning what is going to be contained in the form will prevent users from having to fill out the form more than once.

  1. Save the MIF form as Uinfo.xnf in the working directory.

For more information on creating custom MIF forms, see Appendix B of the "Systems Management Server Administrator's Guide" for Systems Management Server version 1.2.

Testing the MIF Form on a Client

Ideally, the new form should be tested in a test environment with a test installation of Systems Management Server.

  1. Delete the Uinfo.mif and Uinfo.sev files from the \Ms\Sms\Noidmifs directory of the Systems Management Server client.
  2. Manually copy the new form (Uinfo.xnf) to the \Ms\Sms\Bin directory of the Systems Management Server client.
  3. Start the MIF Entry application and view the form. If changes are necessary, go back to the "Customizing the Form" procedure in this article and modify until it is defined the way you want.
  4. Repeat Step 1 to delete the files.

NOTE: If Systems Management Server inventory is taken after the MIF form is filled out, it will be written into the Systems Management Server database. Therefore, perform Step 1 (in Testing the MIF Form on a Client) to ensure that the group class matching the form name (that is, User Information) is not defined in the Systems Management Server database until the final version of the form is determined.

Distributing the Updated Form

Copy the updated Uinfo.xnf file to the following directory on each Systems Management Server site server:


If additional sites are added to the Systems Management Server hierarchy, be sure to copy the custom MIF form to this directory on the new site servers. This will ensure that client inventory that is passed up the Systems Management Server hierarchy will not be rejected by the upper-level sites.

After the Systems Management Server Maintenance Manager service has distributed the file to all the Systems Management Server logon servers managed by the site, any new Systems Management Server client that is installed will receive the updated form automatically.

Viewing the New MIF Form Data

After a Systems Management Server client has filled out the MIF Entry form and has been subsequently inventoried by running Smsls or Runsms utility, the new MIF Entry data can be viewed with the Systems Management Server Administrator utility. The following are some reasons why the new group might not appear under the Systems Management Server client's Personal Computer Properties.

  • To display a new group class for the first time, the Systems Management Server Administrator must be exited and restarted.
  • It can take several minutes for a client's inventory to be updated in the Systems Management Server database.
  • The client's inventory was rejected as being corrupted. See the 'Deleting the Group Class' section (later in this document) to see if this is the case and what needs to be done to correct it.

Additional Steps for Existing Systems Management Server Clients

If the old form has been filled out and inventoried by any users in an existing Systems Management Server environment, you must remove any existing Uinfo.mif and Uinfo.sev files prior to distributing the new Uinfo.xnf file. This can be accomplished by creating a Systems Management Server Workstation package that calls a batch file which contains these commands:

REM Look for the Systems Management Server Client directory on the C: drive
REM If it isn't found, look on the D: drive
  goto END

  goto END

echo SMS Client Directory Not Found


In the preceding example, the batch file could be extended to look for the Systems Management Server client on other drive partitions. This same functionality could also be performed using a Systems Management Server Installer application.

Deleting the Group Class

The preceding steps should not be necessary if the procedures documented earlier are followed as recommended. However, if a new form name was not used, as recommended in the previous steps, it might be necessary to delete the group class created by an earlier version of the MIF form.

Any inventory taken from Systems Management Server clients that have filled out the new form will be rejected as being corrupted if the form name used is already defined in the Systems Management Server database and has a different format.

The MIFs that are rejected by the Dataloader service are placed in the following directory:


To prevent the client inventory from being rejected, do the following:

WARNING: Deleting a group class from the Systems Management Server database will result in the complete loss of all inventory stored by the corresponding tables in the Systems Management Server database. In other words, if the "User Information" group class is deleted, all Systems Management Server clients that previously showed the "User Information" group in their Personal Computer Properties will no longer show this group. In addition, deleting a group class will probably result in RESYNC jobs being created in order to retrieve full inventory information from Systems Management Server clients.

  1. Start the Systems Management Server Database Manager utility and log on to SQL server.
  2. On the Tools menu, click Delete Group Classes.
  3. Select the Personal Computer architecture and then click OK.
  4. In the Defined Group Classes list, see if "User Information" is defined. If "User Information" is defined as a group class, then at least one Systems Management Server client has filled out the original form and passed it up with their Systems Management Server inventory.
  5. Select User Information, click OK, and then answer Yes to verify the delete action.
  6. Quit the Systems Management Server Database Manager utility.
  7. Start the Systems Management Server Service Manager utility.
  8. Stop and restart the Systems Management Server Executive service running on the Systems Management Server site server. This will flush the Systems Management Server Dataloader's cache, which contains an image of the structure of the Systems Management Server database.

When the next full client inventory is reported, the new User Information group will be created with the corresponding entries.

After deleting the old group class, the Dataloader may be able to reprocess the MIFs that it previously found to be corrupted. To do this, move the MIF files located in the \BadMifs directory into the \Deltamif.col directory. Do not move MIF files which have a date and/or time stamp earlier than the date changes to the MIF Entry form were made. These were probably marked as corrupted for a different reason.

Additional query words: prodsms custom mifs

Keywords: kbinfo kbinventory KB175526