How to force an SCCM 2012 client out of Provisioing Mode during OSD

The other day I had an issue at a customer, where the installations of new computers ran without any errors, but once logging in, it was obvious that everything was not right.
The reason why we noticed that something was wrong, was that all new computers that had been installed, were missing the SCEP client. Looking at the server side, everything looked fine, so it had to be something on the client side.

Issues that were present:
1. SCEP was not being installed
2. Fewer Actions than usually for the Configuration Manager client
3. There was no Client Certificate for the client

I’ve seen this before with SCCM 2007, and then the problem was the client was still in Provisioning Mode.
Provisioning Mode is a mode that the client is in during OSD, which blocks policies from being applied during the installation. Once the task sequence is complete, the client should have been brought out of this mode, and get its policies correctly.
One easy way to check this is opening the Registry Editor and checking this value:

Regedit Provisioing mode SCCM 2012 client

Sure enough, the client was still in Provisioning Mode.

So, how should we solve this?

One way is to change the value in the registry and then reinstall the client, but since this happens on almost all new installations, this would be some seriously tedious work.

The easiest solution is to add these two registry changes as seperate command line steps in your Task Sequence after the “Setup Windows and ConfigMgr” step:

Force SCCM 2012 client out of Provisioning Mode Task Sequence

Do a new installation now and it should work!

Note: This does not actually solve the underlying issue why the client is still left in Provisioning Mode. It does however get your deployment solution up and running again.

6 Responses

  1. Rob Simmers

    I’ve had to deal with this in the past and typically OSD is crashing. Typically it’s Windows Update with a corrupt package or something. If you review the smsts*.log it’s not always easy to find, but if you have a majority of clients in provisioning mode, then the task sequence is crashing and not completing the final steps to prepare the system for boot. In SCCM 2007 client, some other indicators are in the SCCM Client control panel applet, Site Mode is UNKNOWN.

  2. This is just a workaround, but does not fix the underlying issue that causes the client to be stuck in provisioning mode.
    It might get really hard to find out what’s causing it (disabling / enabling TS steps until you found out which one to blame) though.

  3. That is true. Not sure if I emphasized it enough in the post 🙂 thanks for the input Torsten

  4. Thanks for the registry keys information. How can I tell if the scep is installed? Where do I look on the client pc?
    Our pc’s that ccm stops working on never have a certificate listed.

  5. There should be scepinstall.log file under Windows\ccmsetup\logs. If there is no certificate listed, the client is most likely still in Provisioning Mode. Check the provided reg value 🙂

  6. Yeah, a common problem is Windows Updates with double restarts that break the Task Sequence. The problem with this is that the TS doesn’t “fail” and therefore it’s a little bit more difficult for support personnel to see that there is something wrong with the installation before giving the device to the user.

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