SCCM Client Install – CcmSetup, Monitoring, Synchronization

Table of Contents
. Why manual SCCM client install
. Try to reinstall the SCCM client from Console
. Useful CcmSetup.exe Switches
. Monitoring Installation of CcmSetup.exe
. After SCCM Client installation
. Check SCCM Client synchronization

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Why manual SCCM client install

Installing the Client for System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM Client Install) is necessary for the Computer / Server to connect with the environment and having all the configuration settings centered at one place and online. You can set “Push Installation” (send client software installation instruction from the SCCM Console to chosen computers) for all the clients from the SCCM Console. Although, there are times that you need to install the clients manually (Migration problems, Client failures, etc).

Try to reinstall the SCCM client from Console

You can try to reinstall the Client in the SCCM Console before connecting to the host and manually installing it:

. Assets and Compliance => Devices
*** If you see your device and it says on "Client" tab "No", but when you connect to the computer, you see that the client is installed, most likely you will need to reinstall the client.
. RightClick on the Device => Install Client
    "Install Configuration Manager Client Wizard"
"Specify Client Push Options"
[V] Always install the client software
[V] Uninstall existing Configuration Manager Client before the client is installed
*** equivalent to "/forceinstall" switch of the "ccmsetup.exe"
[V] Install the client software from a specified site
*** Select your Site ***

Useful CcmSetup.exe Switches

The Client installation files are located at the Primary Site in its installation folder:

\siteserver\c$\Program Files\Microsoft Configuration Manager\Client\ccmsetup.exe

There are several switches that may help your Client Setup recognize your Primary Site and settings faster:


Will force the Client installation connecting to that Management Point while downloading the client installation files from near Distribution Points that are configured to that MP, if there is no DPs then the setup service will download files from that Management Point.


Will force the assignment of the client to that Site Code. If you will not specify this property, the client will receive the assignment from Active Directory Domain Services or from specified Management Point.


Ccmsetup.exe / SMSSITECODE=PP1

Other switches that can help you install:

Ccmsetup.exe /forceinstall

Forces the installation service to remove any existing client and install the one that comes with the service

Ccmsetup.exe /Source:c:\SCCMClientCB

You can Copy the whole “Client” folder

\siteserver\c$\Program Files\Microsoft Configuration Manager\Client\

to the computer, that you want to install it on, to “C:\SCCMClientCB” or any other folder that you like. You will need to change the switch accordingly to your path.

Finally, “ccmsetup” is downloading all the setup files that are located on MPs and on DPs through the Background Intelligent Transfer Service. If you specify this switch it will search for the files in the folder that you copied the files to, like “C:\SCCMClientCB”. So, the “ccmsetup.exe” will search for its files in that folder instead of DPs and MPs.

Ccmsetup.exe /BITSPriority:FOREGROUND

Ccmsetup uses BITS to download the files. If you have Background Intelligent Transfer Service configured in your environment to download at lower rates between certain time points and when you run the ccmsetup it is within the lower rate time range – you will wait more time in order to finish the installation. With this setting you can override the default behavior of the ccmsetup (which is NORMAL) and download with faster rates. The available states of importance in descending order are:


Full list of switches and properties for “ccmsetup.exe” can be found in Microsoft Docs.
In addition, you can find there some of the return codes.

There is a script available for SCCM client Offline installation that you can try (We didn’t test it, so if you have spare time you can write your findings in the comment section).

*** After “ccmsetup.exe” has completed – the installation files will be copied to:


Monitoring Installation of CcmSetup.exe

The installation of ccmsetup.exe is silent by design. Right after you executed “ccmsetup.exe” you may open “Task Manager” to check its activity:

. [Ctrl] + [Shift] + [ESC]
. [Details] tab (Windows 10)
. You will see "ccmsetup.exe" is running.

Also, you may open the Services configuration, find there a service “ccmsetup” and check that it is in “Running” state:

. [Win] + [R]
. Type "services.msc"
. [OK]
. Double Click "ccmsetup"
. Check its state

After the ccmsetup finishes its action you will see in Task manager that “ccmsetup.exe” has disappeared. “CcmExec.exe” is running there instead. In “Services” there will be no “ccmsetup”, but a new service called “SMS Agent Host”, which is “CcmExec.exe” actually.

We can monitor *.log files with “CMTrace”.
*** You can check our guide for CMTrace Usage.
The SCCM Client install logs are located in:


First of all, there will be created “ccmsetup.log”. Open it with “cmtrace.exe” and you will see the progress of the installation.
The Setup will end with the line:

CcmSetup is exiting with return code 0

You might get different kind of red lines. Mostly, they’re not that big of a deal as cmtrace marks red or yellow based on keywords. There are situations when “ccmsetup.exe” will stop the installation and it will tell you that it will retry after the timeout. If the setup quits with any exit code except “0”, you might need to investigate why. If the ccmsetup service is still present, it will begin the installation again after the timeout or after you restart.
After “ccmsetup.log” has finished, you might want to check “client.msi.log” in the same location. To see if it has finished fine also.
The last line of the log will be:

=== Verbose logging stopped: 01/01/2099  10:10:10 ===

After SCCM Client installation

When you open the Software Center after the installation

Start => Microsoft System Center => Software Center

the actual executable will be:
For SCCM Client 2012


For SCCM Client Current Branch


Check SCCM Client synchronization

After the “ccmsetup.exe” has finished its actions, it is time to check on client synchronization. Check when the client has been registered at the primary site and fully functional.
The client does a lot in the background after the installation. You need to check that all the logs have been stabilized at:


Filter the files by date and open the most recent with “cmtrace.exe”. See when it stops adding lines. When it is finished, check the most recent log again to see movement till it stops. Probably it will be another file than the one you opened first. When all the logs stop updating – most likely that the client is registered and working.
For particular registration on the Primary Site, you can open the log:


And find there a line with “[Regtask]”:

[RegTask] - Client is not registered. Sending registration request for GUID:
[RegTask] - Client registration is pending. Server assigned ClientID is GUID:
[RegTask] - Sleeping for 60 seconds ...
[RegTask] - Client registration is pending. Sending confirmation request for GUID:
[RegTask] - Client is registered. Server assigned ClientID is GUID:


[RegTask] - Client is already registered. Exiting.

Only then the client is written in SCCM Database.
Mostly, the last log that synchronizes is “CIDownloader.log”. So, you can open it in “cmtrace.exe” and wait till it stops.

In addition, we will check the SCCM Client settings under Control Panel:

. Control Panel\All Control Panel Items => Configuration manager
. [Actions] tab

If you see only “Machine Policy Retrieval & Evaluation Cycle” and “User Policy Retrieval & Evaluation Cycle”, it means that the client still didn’t receive its policies from the Management Point. Execute [Run now] on both of the actions and close the window. Wait till all the logs will stabilize again. After that open the “Configuration Manager” at the Control Panel to check if you see all the actions in the [Actions] tab. There should be more than 2 Actions – around 11.
You may check that all your settings are working correctly with the information in the [General] tab.

When the synchronization with the primary site is finished, you may check that you have your Deployed items in the “Software Center” Application:

Start => Microsoft System Center => Software Center

You may execute compliance check if you want in:

Device Compliance => [Check compliance]

When the Applications are being installed, they will be downloaded to:


You may check there to see if downloading process has really started as it is stated in the application.

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