In addition to pre-authored, pre-tested BigFix Solutions for Patch Management, Vulnerability Management, and Endpoint Security available with BigFix, administrators can use the authoring environment integrated within the BigFix Console to create powerful custom Fixlets, Tasks, and Analyses to enforce policies, view computer information, detect and remediate vulnerabilities and many other configuration management issues.

For example, with custom Fixlet content, you can:

  • Remove the new P2P software that is hogging all your company's bandwidth.
  • Find those rogue DHCP servers that have been causing you so much network trouble.
  • Update the custom applications in your company.

Other Tools

Fixlet Debugger (QnA)

Starting with BigFix 8.0, QnA and the Relevance Debugger are now part of the Fixlet Debugger application. The Fixlet Debugger application allows a user to do local relevance evaluation to help develop Fixlet messages and retrieved properties.

Note: The Fixlet Debugger can only be run on Microsoft Windows operating systems.

To get this application, download the version(s)* needed:

8.2.1093.0 Fixlet Debugger (4.6 Mb)

8.2.1079.0 Fixlet Debugger (4.6 Mb)

8.1.617.0: Fixlet Debugger (3.2 Mb)

8.1.608.0: Fixlet Debugger (3.2 Mb)

8.1.551.0: Fixlet Debugger (3.2 Mb)

*The Fixlet Debugger for 8.2.1078 is also the correct version for 8.2.1079 and 8.2.1093.

Note: For previous versions of the QnA utility, please refer to the following page:

Instructions for using the Fixlet Debugger

  1. Download the zip file above and extract to a folder.
  2. Run the RelevanceDebugger.exe file. A notepad-like interface will appear with a top and bottom window.
  3. Type any relevance expression, then select the "Edit" menu followed by the "Evaluate option" or press Ctrl+Enter. For instance, type name of operating system and hit Ctrl+Enter. You should see the answer returned as something like Win2000.
  4. See the "Training Guide for Writing Fixlet Messages" above for more information on creating relevance statements.

Note: Non-Windows BigFix Clients already contain an appropriate version of QnA for the operating system they run on. The program file is contained as part of the BES Client package distribution.

Note: QnA will behave differently on Vista BES Clients unless it is run with elevated privileges. If it is run in the standard user space it may return answers different than the actual BES Client. The following inspectors in particular are affected by this: regapp, recent applications, services (and any inspectors that reference process information).


  • Download: sha1.exe Version (375 KB)
  • Description When creating a Fixlet message action or custom action that downloads a file from the Internet or an untrusted source, it is always a good idea to verify that a checksum of the file matches a known value before running the file to ensure that you downloaded the correct unchanged file. The sha1.exe application will generate an action command that will verify the size and SHA1 checksum of a file. This action command can be pasted into the action of a Fixlet message so that the BES Client can verify the checksum before the BES Client executes the file.

    Note: the sha1 value in the action will also allow the BES Server and BES Relay to maintain a persistent cache of the downloaded files.

A "prefetch" statement can be generated using the sha1.exe file. Simply run the sha1.exe file with the argument "-r <filename>" from the command line. For example:

C:\>sha1.exe -r package.exe

prefetch sha1.exe sha1:9370b0019a942400cfebfbdf15c107bbecdc8b0a

size:79360 http://EXAMPLEURL/REPLACEME.exe
You would then copy this result into a custom action or Fixlet action.

The argument -c puts the result string into you paste buffer so you don't need to copy/paste out of the command window.


sha1.exe [-r|-s|-m|-b] [-c]

Contact with problems related to custom authoring.

Note: Custom authoring support is not included in the standard BES support contract. You will need to purchase an Custom Authoring support contract if you would like help creating custom content.

Classes are also available for detailed custom authoring training. Contact Professional Services for more information.



Here is some documentation that will help you learn how to use the Relevance and Action Language to create custom content.

  • Training Guides: Teach you how to use BES authoring and the relevance language to create Fixlet messages
  • Custom Authoring Training Guide (PDF) - Complete Guide to creating Custom Content for Windows including advanced Relevance Language training, advanced Action Language Training, QNA error messages, and strategies for creating Fixlet messages.
Quick References: Quick examples of how to use the Relevance and Action Languages
Inspector Libraries: Reference libraries that contains every piece of information that can be retrieved by the BigFix agents for Fixlet messages and retrieved properties
Action Libraries - Reference libraries that contain information about how to use actions in Fixlet messages or in custom actions