Documentation forSolarWinds Service Desk

Agent installation for Windows

On this page


The SolarWinds Service Desk (SWSD) Discovery Agent runs as a service. After the agent is installed, it automatically updates any and all core libraries it runs on, as well as future enhancements (code).

SolarWinds doesn't push anything to the agent/scanner from our servers. The agent is designed to check for updates from the server.

When updates are available they get installed. On average, the agent is updated quarterly.

In addition, the SolarWinds Discovery Agent Watchdog Service keeps watch on the Solarwinds Discovery Agent Service, and restarts it if it stops for any reason.

Use the information in the following sections to install the Discovery Agent on a single Windows computer. After you complete the deployment and setup procedures on one computer, you can perform a mass deployment to install the agent on host devices throughout your organization.


Setup > Discovery & Assets > Installation.


Ensure that the following prerequisite requirements are met before installing.

Supported platforms

The Discovery Agent is supported on the following platforms:

  • Windows 7.x
  • Windows 8.x
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 11

SolarWinds supports the following Windows Server operating systems:

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 (October 2009)
  • Windows Server 2012 (September 2012)
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 (October 2013)
  • Windows Server 2016 (September 2016)
  • Windows Server 2019 (October 2018)
Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2003 are not supported.

Firewall requirements

The following domains and ports must be allowed.

Purpose Destination IP TCP/UDP Destination Port Protocol
Report asset data to the SWSD platform

(EU accounts only)

Obtain the external IP address for monitored devices UDP 53 DNS

Although the required firewall settings are only for outbound traffic (Destination IP and Port), when a session is initiated from inside the firewall, it allows incoming traffic because it knows it is a response to a legitimate request.

Group policy requirements

Be aware that if your IT organization has a group policy that would restrict an application being installed from automatically creating itself as an NT service, the policy needs to allow the NT SERVICE/SamanageAgent to run as a service.

If the agent is not allowed to run as a service, the installation can fail. If the agent does install but is not allowed to run as a service, it will not report back.


You need administrator permissions to run the installer. If you are not logged in as an administrator, you will be prompted to Run as administrator. When you run an admin-enabled command window, a command prompt is not required.

The first step in the installation process is to download the Discovery Agent (MSI or EXE). After downloading, you have the following options for installing it on a single computer:

You can deploy the discovery agent on Windows and macOS devices.

Download the Agent installation file for Windows

  1. Navigate to Setup > Discovery & Assets > Installation.

  2. To the right of Discovery Agent Windows, click Download MSI/EXE file.

  3. From the dropdown, select the file type you want to download (MSI or EXE) and save it to your local computer.

  4. Run the file you downloaded:

    • If you downloaded the MSI file, you can open the file to install on your local computer.

    • If you downloaded the EXE file, you need to run the Discovery Agent Setup wizard.

Run the MSI file

Open the MSI file and follow instructions.

You can also perform a silent installation of the MSI file. See Silent MSI Install.

Run the Discovery Agent EXE Setup wizard

  1. Review the installation prerequisites and employ all required corporate security measures in your deployment.

  2. Launch the Discovery Agent wizard.

  3. At the Welcome message, click Next to begin.

  4. If you agree with the license agreement, select I accept the agreement, and then click Next.

  5. In the Ready to Install dialog, click Next.

  6. When prompted, click Finish to complete the installation.

    When the installation is complete, the Discovery Agent runs an inventory scan for the first time. This may take several minutes to complete.

    The agent then begins reporting on the preconfigured parameters (for example, hardware and software). It may take a few moments for the information to display in your SWSD instance.

Perform silent installation using a command line

Msiexec can be used to install, modify, and perform operations on Windows Installer from the command line. For more information, see msiexec.

If you want to install the Discovery Agent using a Windows command line, perform the following steps:

  1. Open Terminal.

  2. Navigate to the Download folder.

  3. Execute the installer with the mode unattended and proxy command line arguments.

    "<folder>\Solarwinds_Discovery_Agent_<version>_installer.exe" --mode unattended
    --enable_proxy 1 --proxy_address [address] --proxy_port [port] --proxy_username [username] --proxy_password [password]

    Replace [address], [port], [username], [password] with the appropriate information based on the related proxy.

    Be aware that SWSD cannot pick proxy settings automatically. Proxy settings are saved to the configuration file and are used for agent communication.
Running the installer as an administrator is not required. However, you will be prompted to run the installation as an administrator. When you run an admin-enabled command window, a command prompt is not required.

Install MSI using silent command

You can also choose to perform a silent installation of the MSI file.

msiexec /i c:\softwares\Solarwinds_Discovery_Agent_2.0.76_2.0.8_1056_480_installer.msi /qn

Mass deploy

After the single deployment is complete, you can perform a mass deployment. See Agent installation for mass deployment.

Uninstall the Discovery Agent

To uninstall the Discovery Agent, go to Control Panel > Programs and Features > Uninstall a program. Select the agent and complete the uninstall procedure.

Uninstall using command line

"C:\Program Files (x86)\Solarwinds Discovery Agent\uninstall.exe"

For silent uninstall use

"C:\Program Files (x86)\Solarwinds Discovery Agent\uninstall.exe" --mode unattended

Force an inventory refresh for the Discovery Agent

After you enable the Discovery Agent, the agent inventory automatically updates every 24 hours. The agent runs as a Windows service and triggers a refresh based on that schedule.

To optimize for outbound bandwidth utilization, the agents randomize the next inventory refresh within a 24-hour time frame. This process prevents all agents from reporting at the same time.

Optionally, you can force the agent on a targeted machine to manually push an update. To push the update, open a Command Prompt window and run the following commands or copy the code into the prompt. If the prompt does not return an error message, the procedure completed successfully.

"c:\Program Files (x86)\Solarwinds Discovery Agent\agent\ruby\bin\ruby.exe" "c:\Program Files (x86)\Solarwinds Discovery Agent\agent\src\mini_kernel\cmd.rb" -f

Related topics