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Installing/Applying ConfigMgr 2012 R2 SP1 (SP2)

Now before I go on, you should know there are two files available for download but I’m still getting the same question regarding it. https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/evaluate-system-center-2012-configuration-manager-and-endpoint-protection

  • System Center 2012 Configuration Manager and Endpoint Protection SP2
  • System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager and Endpoint Protection SP1

Just looking at it you’ll see that it is the first service pack for ConfigMgr 2012 R2 and the second service pack for ConfigMgr 2012. Hence this is where the confusion lies. Even though the above statement is true but when deciding which files to use for the installation is where most people get caught by surprise. Even though you’ve read some FAQs about it some of you might still be unclear about it. So let me share an easy way of understanding how it all works. Microsoft has brought the two versions of ConfigMgr (2012 and 2012 R2) up to the same level of functionality. So it makes sense to release only one file that will be applicable to both versions of ConfigMgr. They did…except that there is a second file. And trust me the names used here is not obvious and that’s probably why you’re reading this now.


Think of it that Microsoft has released SP2 for ConfigMgr 2012 but the same file used will also upgrade a ConfigMgr 2012 R2 to SP1 level. Remember they are now essentially the same now. It is a full media which allows you to install a complete ConfigMgr environment from nothing. So if you used that file to install ConfigMgr from scratch, you will end up with a ConfigMgr 2012 SP2 installation.

Here’s where the second file comes in. After you’re already on ConfigMgr 2012 SP2 and want to bring it to ConfigMgr 2012 R2 SP1, is when you use the second file. It is a mere 5MB file after extraction. If you are on ConfigMgr 2012 R2, this file will NOT install SP1 for you. Remember you should be using the first file which is about 1.1GB.

I hope that was a short one to clear the understanding before I proceed to show you how to go about backing up, restore, test and then upgrade your ConfigMgr environment to SP2 or SP1 if you were on ConfigMgr 2012 R2.

On to actually performing the upgrade. First you would want to be safe so you should make a backup of your ConfigMgr database. The best way is to protect your ConfigMgr environment is to schedule your backups. To do this is simple using the SQL Management Studio.

You should remember that executing the setup.exe /TESTDBUPGRADE not only runs a simulation or a pre-req test, it actually upgrades the database. That is why you should always make a backup of your ConfigMgr database, restore it to another SQL server and then run the /TESTDBUPGRADE on it. So don’t run setup.exe /TESTDBUPGRADE by mistake!



Go to Management > Maintenance Plan. Right-click on it and select Maintenance Plan Wizard.



Click Next on the SQL Server Maintenance Pla Wizard page.



Enter a name for your maintenance plan. Click the Change button on the bottom right.



Configure the schedule you want the backups to run then click OK. Then back at the Select Plan Properties page, click Next.



Click to select the three checkbox as below then click Next.

  • Clean Up History
  • Back Up Database (Full)
  • Maintenance Cleanup Task



In the Select Maintenance Task Order page, accept the defaults or change the order then click Next.



Most of the time you do not need to keep more than a week so change to remove historical data older than one week.



In the Define Back Up Database (Full) Task page, click on the Database drop-down box and select the database you want to backup. Configure the Folder location you want to store the backup file and select the backup compression to Compress backup. Click Next.



In the Define Maintenance Cleanup Task page, configure the location where you store the backup file and enter bak as the file extension. Change to delete files more than 1 week of age. Click Next.



In the Select Report Options page, accept the defaults or change to e-mail report if desired, then click Next.



In the Complete the Wizard page, click Finish.



In the Maintenance Plan Wizard Progress, click Close once the process is complete.



Back to the SQL Management Studio console, right-click on the Maintenance Plan you just created and click Execute to run the backup task out of schedule.



Click Close once the task is completed.



This is what you’ll end up with after the backup task is complete. Note the file size after compression from an original size of 5GB! Impressive.




Now to restore the database so that you can test the upgrade. You have to remember that you cannot restore the ConfigMgr DB to another SQL server that has a ConfigMgr DB. That means you would need another SQL server that is not another ConfigMgr server.

In my case I’ve got another SQL server in my environment and using the SQL Management Studio, right-click on Databases and select Restore Database.



In the General node of the Restore Database screen, select Device and then browse to locate the .bak file that was generated from the backup process.



In the Select backp devices, click Add.



Browse to the location of the .bak file then click OK three times.



Test DB Upgrade

Now that you’ve got the database restored to another SQL server, we can begin to test the DB upgrade. Remember, the setup.exe /TESTDBUPGRADE runs an actually database upgrade.

Using a command prompt or PowerShell window, navigate to the location of ConfigMgr 2012 SP2 media. Then simply execute “setup.exe /TESTDBUPGRADE <database name>



You can check the progress and status of the upgrade from the ConfigMgrSetup.log file which is normally located in your C:\ root. Now that you’ve successfully upgraded your ConfigMgr database in a separate server, you can now be more confident of it also succeeding in your production ConfigMgr environment.



Installing SP2

The rest of it is easy. Go ahead and install SP2 into your production environment.

Click Install.



In the Before You Begin page, click Next.



In the Getting Started page, make sure Upgrade this Configuration Manager site is selected then click Next.



In the Microsoft Software License Terms page, select the checkbox to accept the license terms then click Next.



In the Prerequisite Licenses page, select all the checkboxes to accept the license terms and then click Next.



In the Prerequisite Downloads page, choose either to Download required files or Use previously downloaded files then click Next.



In the Server Language Selection page, leave the defaults and click Next.



In the Client Language Selection page, leave the defaults and then click Next.



In the Settings Summary page, click Next.



In the Prerequisite Check page, click Begin Install.



Click Close when the process is complete.




Installing ConfigMgr 2012 R2 SP1

Now to get it up to ConfigMgr 2012 R2 SP1. Just so that you know you using the correct file, it is the smaller size of the two which is only about 5MB so this will be a really quick one. Click Upgrade to proceed.



Click Next.



In the Software License Terms page, select the I accept the license agreement checkbox and then click Next.



In the Ready to Install page, click Install.



In the Setup Complete page, click Finish.



The Experience

Before ConfigMgr 2012 Service Pack 2 Installation


After ConfigMgr 2012 Service Pack 2 Installation


After ConfigMgr 2012 R2 Service Pack 1 Installation







One response

  1. Fabian Willems

    Nicely Done, thank you! Though I have two little additions:
    1. If the SQL server instance used for testing the DB upgrade is not the default instance, the command to execute is “setup.exe /TESTDBUPGRADE \”.
    2. The SQL server instance used for testing the DB upgrade has to use the collation “SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS”, otherwise the DB (test) upgrade will fail.

    July 24, 2015 at 5:40 pm

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