Presentation Overview

Applies To: System Center 2012 - Service Manager

[This topic is pre-release documentation and is subject to change in future releases. Blank topics are included as placeholders.]

The presentation part of a management pack lets you define or redefine console workspaces, folders, folder items, tasks, and forms. You can define any number of these items in the management pack. Additionally, you can define items to present information that is provided by another management pack. All presentation items are consumed and displayed by the Service Manager console.

Folders and Folder Items

Folders represent logical groupings of other folders or folder items, displayed in a hierarchy. A folder item presents a view that displays objects and information through the Service Manager console. You can associate tasks with folders and views that are targeted by folder items.

The following tables describe categories or folder items that can be applied to folders to change their behavior or to introduce specific functionality.


Management Pack Identifier Target Description



The folder identifier to add the tasks to.

Creates the Delete and Properties tasks for the folder.

Folder Items

Management Pack Identifier Description



Creates a task in the parent folder that will allow the user to create a new child folder and add it to the current management pack.



Creates a task in the parent folder that will allow the user to create a new view and add it to the current management pack.


A workspace is a folder that functions as a master folder. It is the parent folder that all other folders and folder items will appear under. A workspace is represented by a bar with a title in it. Multiple workspace bars may be displayed together in the Service Manager console. When the user selects a workspace, the tree view displays all subfolders for that workspace.


Tasks appear as clickable links in the Service Manager console. These links can call out to external code or execute an action provided internally by Service Manager. Tasks can be associated with folders or individual records presented by a view. Here are some examples of what tasks can do:

  • Create a new record

  • Delete a record

  • Edit an existing record

  • Send an email

  • Execute a process


Management packs must have a category set on them that allows for tasks to be shown in the console. Without this category, the Service Manager console will ignore any tasks defined by the management pack. The category that allows for tasks to be loaded by the console is Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.ServiceManager.ManagementPack. It is defined in the Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.ServiceManager.UI.Console management pack. The following table describes some of the other categories that affect tasks.

Management Pack Identifier Description



Allows your tasks to be shown in the Service Manager console.

This category does not use the Target attribute. It should contain two children nodes named ManagementPackName and ManagementPackVersion. Which contain the name and version of your management pack. Here is an example:

<Category ID="Category.ShowTasks" Value="Console!Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.ServiceManager.ManagementPack">



Displays a task in the Service Manager console that will show the default form to create a new record of the type of Target.

The Target attribute should point to a view.


Tasks declare the type of action they will take when they are clicked. This is based on the assembly resource the task references, and then the handler defined by that assembly. The Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.ServiceManager.UI.Console management pack defines an assembly resource named SdkDataAccessAssembly that contains useful task handlers. This assembly resource points to the Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.UI.SdkDataAccess.dll file. The following table describes common task handlers provided by that assembly:

Task Handler Description


Invokes a task handler defined by another assembly. The following is a list of arguments to use with the task:


The assembly file name to load without an extension.


The fully qualified type name of the task handler to start.

[No name on this argument]

A value to send to the handler.


Displays a help page. The following is a list of arguments to use with the task:


Command to send the help document handler. Valid values are as follows: OpenCHM.


The Help file topic to open in the Help file. Example: html/80cecd71-e698-43ec-938d-851c387445af.htm


Runs an executable.


A True or False value on whether to log the task and the result.


The full file path of the executable.


The working directory to use for the executing program.

[No name on this argument]

The command line to send to the program.

Generally, the actions you will take with a task will be specific to your management pack solution. This will require that you code your own assembly with those handlers. For more information, see custom action handlers, see How to Create Task Handlers.


Views display object properties in a table format. The objects displayed are based on search criteria. The columns displayed in a view are customizable. A management pack can provide customized views and a user can create their own views. Each view is always tied to a specific type of object that is provided by a management pack. By default, basic tasks such as create new and edit are always provided to the records of a view.


By default, any class instance that you edit or create will display a form that is auto generated based on the properties of the class. However, you may want to create your own forms for editing your class types. Your own forms could pull in other data for reference or present the items in a different style than how the Service Manager console would typically display them. For example, to provide the user with the option of generating a report that is based on the selected items, you could create an action that displays a custom form to preview and email the report.

Image References

Image resources are defined by a management pack and included in a management pack bundle. An image reference specifically ties an image resource to a folder or folder item element. The Service Manager console will then use the image when graphically representing the folder or folder item. For more information, see [LINK TO MP CONCEPTUAL] and [LINK TO MP ELEMENT REFERENCE].

The following table describes existing image references you can use to give objects the default look:

Language Packs

To ensure usefulness for non-English-speaking users, you must include the appropriate language packs in your management packs. Language packs contain all the titles, descriptions, and text used in the Service Manager console. Language packs are organized according to ISO standard 639 language identifiers. A management pack can define any number of language packs. If a management pack contains elements that may be used by the Service Manager console, it should define a default language pack.

See Also

Other Resources

Scenario: Working with the Console
Scenario: Working with Console Tasks