What’s new in System Center 2016 Orchestrator


When you look in Technet about innovation in System Center 2016 RTM you’ll find innovations for Service Management Automation (SMA):

  • SMA 2016 now supports PowerShell Script in addition to PowerShell
  • With Service Management Automation (SMA) PowerShell ISE you can to author and test your Runbooks in your local PowerShell ISE environment
  • SMA 2016 adds a property to a Runbook that specifies a Runbook Worker it should run on.
    Service Management Automation 2016 now supports PowerShell 5.0.

For Orchestrator there are no changes listed.

And my previous answer was always that in architecture nothing changed.

But there are some minor changes which you should know about, some with perhaps more impact for your work with or upgrade to System Center 2016 Orchestrator. There are also little bugs as well which I want to note here.


  • There are Integration Packs available for System Center 2016: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=54098&WT.mc_id=rss_alldownloads_all.
  • System Center 2016 Integration Pack for System Center 2016 Operations Manager no longer requires Operations Manager console to be installed for the IP to work.
  • A customer from me gets „Access denied“ when using the „Run Program“ Activity to a Windows 2016 System with SC2012R2 Orchestrator unless the logon account from Orchestrator Runbook Service is an explicit member in the local admins group. With System Center 2016 it works if the logon account from Orchestrator Runbook Service is member of a security group which is set in local Admins.
  • System Center 2016 Orchestrator has a newer SshClient. Therefore you can connect  with „Run SHH Command“ to newer systems without lowering the SSH cipher requirements on sshd itself.  „C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Microsoft System Center 2012\Orchestrator\Extensions\Support\SSH\SshClient.exe“ has version
    (However you cannot connect to Ubuntu 16.04.3 TLS for this
    Plink.exe from https://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty/latest.html works. You need to run it first from PowerShell or Command Prompt that the SsHostKeys  are imported to registry. Execute SshClient.exe with the logon account from Orchestrator Runbook Service the key gets imported to the registry of this account).

There are even small bugs which are new in System Center 2016 which do not exist in System Center 2012 R2:

  • When you try to Re-„Check in“ a Runbook with a „Send Email“ Activity including an attachment after „Check Out“ and modify anything in the Runbook, you get the error: „An error occurred saving the activity to the data store. Please check the Orchestrator Management Service trace logs.“ Find details and a workaround here: http://sc-orchestrator.eu/error-re-check-in-a-runbook-with-send-email-activity-including-attachment-in-sc-2016-orchestrator-rtm/
  • When you got select in System Center 2016 RTM Runbook Designer Hep/Abpout it shows „Technical Preview 5“
  • In the configurations settings of the Exchange Admin Integration Pack for Orchestrator in System Center 2016 there’s a new field  „Authentication mechanism“ which is not set after the update from System Center 2012 R2.
  • In Start  Menu you’ll find Runbook Designer, Datastore Configuration and Deployment Manager of the SC 2016 version in „Microsoft System Center 2012“.
  • Even in a fresh installation SC2016 Orchestrator is installed under the program path and registry  path „Microsoft System Center 2012“.

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