3.9 Application Management

You are not required to organize bundles into different folders, but we recommend that you use a minimal folder structure to divide applications and images. If bundles are organized logically and with granularity, it becomes very easy to create special administrative accounts that only have limited rights to a given folder or set of folders.

3.9.1 Recommendations for Organizing Bundles

Every organization is different and has different requirements for organizing content. The important thing to keep in mind is that you should always organize your content according to how your organization views it. If you do not organize the content and simply put everything into the default folder, it becomes unmanageable within a very short time.

Keeping this in mind, some best practices for organizing your bundle objects include:

  • Create a root folder for application bundles.

  • Create a root folder for imaging bundles.

  • Create a folder for bundles that you may subscribe to, from other ZENworks zones.

The ZPM folder is an auto-generated folder that contains all ZPM service-related bundles. Although the bundles in this folder can be changed and additional ones created, we recommend that you do not change the folder and the bundles within it.

We recommend that you create folders under the base Bundles folder to group imaging and application bundles together. The following list provides examples of the types of folders that can be created:

  • Create a folder for software vendors.

  • Create a folder for special applications.

  • Create a folder for base images.

  • Create a folder for add-on images.

  • Create a folder for bundles that you share with other zones.

Categorizing application and imaging bundles into separate folders also allows for administrator roles to be created so you can limit the bundles that an administrator can edit or assign to devices.

The important thing is to arrange your content with your company organization in mind. This might be different with each company or site. This information should be gathered during the design phase of the project and detailed in the design document.

For more information, see the ZENworks Software Distribution Reference.

Bundle Groups

In addition to using folders, it is a good idea to create bundle groups for some applications to make assignments easier. Each group contains a set of bundles that belong together. These groups can be organized for special functions or tasks.

The following are some examples of how you might want to leverage bundle groups to keep things simple:

  • APPS-Base: Contains all applications needed by all users.

  • Finance-Applications: Contains bundles needed to work with finance applications.

  • Help Desk-Tools: Contains bundles that are related to the Help Desk.

For more information, see the ZENworks Software Distribution Reference.

3.9.2 Assigning Bundles

A major feature in ZENworks is the ability to inherit assignments from multiple places within the system. With this feature, it is very easy to assign a bundle or bundle group to many devices in seconds. You do not need to assign bundles to each device, which saves time and money.

Based on your folder and group design, we recommend that you use folder or group assignments instead of direct assignments. Use these indirect assignments wherever possible to increase speed and reduce administration effort. If you utilize folders and groups for as many of your assignments as possible, you can deliver updates to hundreds of devices when you need to get them there, even immediately.

Best practices on how to leverage folders and groups include the following:

  • If you have a set of bundles that are required for all devices in a site, use the site folder to assign these bundles or bundle groups.

  • If you have special bundles that are used in one or more departments, assign these bundles only to the department folders.

  • If you have bundles that are used by several devices in different folders, set up groups for assignments.

  • Only use direct assignments if a single device or a small number of devices need special assignments.

For more information, see the ZENworks Software Distribution Reference.

3.9.3 Testing Bundle Changes

Micro Focus’s best practice dictates that a new application or change to an existing application in the environment should use a testing phase that does not affect the production network. To accomplish this there are three approaches that you can take:

  • Use built-in bundle change management: Any changes to a bundle, the changes are automatically saved to a sandbox. These changes can only be seen by test users or devices that have been flagged by the administrator.

  • Create a test zone that can be used to test the bundle: This zone will have different devices and different bundles that you can use to test. You can then use the mutlizone content sharing and subscription capabilities to subscribe your production zone to the test zone, allowing you to quickly and easily import test bundles into production.

  • Create a test zone that can be used to test the bundle, but instead of setting up multizone content sharing and subscription you can manually import and export the bundles between zones as described below. This is useful if you want to store the bundle for offline disaster recovery.

Importing and Exporting Bundles

To import and export bundles manually between zones you can do the following:

To export bundles:

  1. From your test zone Primary Server, export the bundle to a specific export directory, by using the following command:

    zman bundle-export-to-file /bundle_path/bundle_name bundle_filename.xml -c

    If the application has no dependencies and is not a Windows MSI bundle, a single bundle_filename.xml is created. If there are dependencies or MSI content to be imported into the Content Repository, two files will be created: bundle_filename.xml and bundle_filename_ActionContentInfo.xml.

    Additionally, because you used the -c parameter, the actual MSI or other file content associated with the bundle will be exported.

    For example, you can export the officeXP bundle to officeXP.xml by using the zman bundle-export-to-file officeXP officeXP.xml -c command. The officeXP.xml and officeXP_ActionContentInfo.xml files are created along with a folder containing the content.

  2. Copy the entire directory by whatever method of communication is approved from the DEV-ZONE server to the PROD-ZONE server.

  3. Create the bundle on the PROD-ZONE ZCM server by using the following command:

    zman bundle-create new_bundle_name bundle_xml_filename.xml bundlefolder --actioninfo bundle_name_ActionContentInfo.xml (using /bundlefolder/bundlename results in an error because of invalid characters).

    For example, use the following command to create a bundle called ApplicationX:

    zman bundle-create OfficeXP officeXP.xml "/Bundles/Microsoft Applications" --actioninfo officeXP_ActionContentInfo.xml