Today I got some clarification direct from the source concerning improvements in the handling of duplicate SusClientIDs in the v7.4 (WSUS3SP2) Windows Update Agent.
A new feature in the WUAgent v7.4 uses “hardware validation” to determine if a SusClientID contained in a machine is a duplicate of one already in the WSUS database. If it is, it autogenerates a new SusClientID. This feature executes at Service Startup.
The WSUS3SP2 Deployment Guide introduced this concept of “hardware validation” in the new chart in the Client Requirements section, but it didn’t get documented anywhere else, although I’ve now learned that the line in the Release Notes that says “Imaged machines will be more clearly displayed in the WSUS console“ really means . . . “We fixed the bug and now your imaged machines will simply appear without any additional remediation steps necessary.”
Additionally, there was a question as to why the chart stated it would only apply to physical machines when I had actually observed a VM perform this “hardware validation” step to reset a SusClientID. The Hardware Validation does apply to VMs; the chart is incorrect. An update to the chart in the Deployment Guide is in the works; in the meantime I’ve added Community Content to clarify based on what I was told today by a WUAgent Program Manager responsible for this functionality.
This functionally is dependent on certain systemboard capabilities that might not be present in legacy systemboards. What actually constitutes a “legacy systemboard” is not yet identified to me, but the question is being researched, and when I have the answer I’ll share it. The good news is that Virtual Machines do not have this “legacy systemboard deficiency”, and VMs will auto-generate a new SusClientID. I’ve not yet empirically verified this functionality, however; that’s on my agenda for early next week.
You can preemptively update your WUAgent to v7.4, even without WSUS3SP2 deployed, by downloading and installing the new WUAgent from the Microsoft Download Center. See KB949104 for details or download from these links: WUA v7.4 x86 | WUA v7.4 x64 | WUA v7.4 ia64