Author Archives: Warren Kahn

System Center 1801 has been released

Just announced here the new System Center Semi-Annual Channel release now available!

Xpost of new features below:

What’s in System Center, version 1801?

System Center, version 1801 focuses on enhancements and features for System Center Operations Manager, Virtual Machine Manager, and Data Protection Manager. Additionally, security and bug fixes, as well as support for TLS 1.2, are available for all System Center components including Orchestrator, Service Management Automation, and Service Manager.

I am pleased to share the capabilities included in this release:

  • Support for additional Windows Server features in Virtual Machine Manager: Customers can now setup nested virtualizationsoftware load balancer configuration, and storage QoS configuration and policy, as well as migrate VMware UEFI VM to Hyper-V VM. In addition to supporting Windows Server, version 1709, we have added support for host monitoring, host management, fall back HGS, configuration of encrypted SDN virtual networkShielded Linux VMs on Hyper-V management, and backup capabilities.
  • Linux monitoring in Operations Manager: Linux monitoring has been significantly improved with the addition of a customizable FluentD-based Linux agent. Linux log file monitoring is now on par with that of Windows Server (Yes, we heard you! Kick the tires, it really works).
  • Improved web console experience in Operations Manager: The System Center Operations Manager web console is now built on HTML5 for a better experience and support across browsers.
  • Updates and recommendations for third-party Management Packs: System Center Operations Manager has been extended to support the discovery and update of third-party MPs.
  • Faster, cost-effective VMware backup: Using our Modern Backup Storage technology in Data Protection Manager, customers can backup VMware VMs faster and cut storage costs by up to 50%.
  • And much more including Linux Kerberos support and improved UI responsiveness when dealing with many management packs in Operations Manager. In Virtual Machine Manager, we have enabled SLB guest cluster floating IP support, added Storage QoS at VMM cloud, added Storage QoS extended to SAN storage, enabled Remote to VMs in Enhanced Session mode, added seamless update of non-domain host agent, and made host Refresher up to 10X faster.

As well as consistent evaluation and license experiences across components.

Customers should consider supplementing System Center with Azure security & management capabilities for enhanced on-premises management and for the management of Azure resources. We have included the following updates in System Center, version 1801:

  • Service Map integration with Operations Manager: Using the Distributed Application Diagram function in SCOM, you can automatically see application, server, and network dependencies deduced from Service Map. This deeper endpoint monitoring from SCOM is surfaced in the diagram view for better diagnostics workflows.
  • Manage Azure ARM VMs and special regions: Using a Virtual Machine Manager add-in, you can now manage Azure ARM VMs, Azure Active Directory, and more regions (China, US Government, and Germany).
  • Service Manager integration with Azure: Using the Azure ITSM integration with Azure Action Groups you can set up rules to create incidents automatically in System Center Service Manager for alerts fired on Azure and non-Azure resources.

SCOM 2016: Updated management pack for AudioCodes™ v1.0.5.65

An updated management pack has been released for AudioCodes™ get it here.

The following AudioCodes gateways are currently supported:
Mediant 4000 E-SBC
Mediant 3000 Gateway and E-SBC
Mediant 2600 E-SBC
Mediant 2000 Media Gateway
Mediant 1000 Media Gateway
Mediant 1000B Gateway and E-SBC
Mediant 1000B MSBR
Mediant 800 MSBR
Mediant 800B Gateway and E-SBC
MediaPack Media Gateways MP-124 (FXS)
MediaPack Media Gateways MP-118 (FXS and FXO)
MediaPack Media Gateways MP-114 (FXS and FXO)
MediaPack Media Gateways MP-112 (FXS)
MediaPack 1288

SCOM 2016: Updated SQL Management Packs v7.0.2.0

New versions of the SQL management packs have been released get them using the links below:

SQL Server 2016here
SQL Server 2014here
SQL Server 2008/2012here
SQL Server Dashboardshere

New in Version 7.0.2.0

SQL Server 2008/2012/2014/2016

  • Fixed issue: Always On data source scripts fail as Microsoft.SqlServer.Management.PSSnapins.dll is not imported
  • Fixed issue: Always On monitoring scripts may fail because of “No coercion operator is defined…” error (caused by an issue in PowerShell 5.0)
  • Fixed Dashboards issue: “DW data early aggregation” rule crashes on SCOM 2016

SQL Server Dashboards

  • Fixed issue: “DW data early aggregation” rule crashes on SCOM 2016

SCOMing soon to a System Center near you!

As the world eagerly awaits the release of the upcoming version of SCOM lets have a brief look at the publicly announced features so far:

The features that have me the most excited are the updated HTML 5 dashboards (so long silverlight!) and the enhanced management pack recommendations which will include MPs from 3rd parties.

Which features are you excited about? 
Do you have an idea for a feature that’s not included yet? Let the product team know through UserVoice!

Linux monitoring

You can now use a Linux agent with FluentD support for log file monitoring at par with Windows Server. This update provides the following improvements over previous log file monitoring:

  • Wild card characters in log file name and path.
  • New match patterns for customizable log search like simple match, exclusive match, correlated match, repeated correlation, and exclusive correlation.
  • Support for generic Fluentd plugins published by the fluentd community.

Improved HTML console experience

The Web console has been redesigned and is now a fully HTML-based console and no longer has a dependency on Silverlight. The monitoring tree and dashboards support the HTLM5 markup language.

Enhanced SDK Client performance

We have introduced performance improvements in the Operations console that typically prevent the console from responding while a new management pack is being imported or deleted, or a configuration change to an MP is saved.

Updates and recommendations for third-party Management Packs

In System Center 2016 we released the MP Updates and Recommendations feature which has been expanded now to include discovery and downloads of third-party management pack updates, based on feedback from customers.

Linux Kerberos support

Operations Manager can now support Kerberos authentication wherever the WS-Management protocol is used by the management server to communicate with UNIX and Linux computers, providing greater security by no longer needing to enable basic authentication for Windows Remote Management (WinRM).

Service Map integration

Service Map automatically discovers application components on Windows and Linux systems and maps the communication between services. It automatically builds a common reference map of dependencies across your servers, processes, and third-party services. Integration between Service Map and System Center Operations Manager allows you to automatically create distributed application diagrams in Operations Manager that are based on the dynamic dependency maps in Service Map. For further information on planning and configuring integration, see Service Map integration with System Center Operations Manager.

Management Pack Recap – January 2018 Wave

This is a summary of the wave of Management Packs that were released in January 2018. Information and download location in the links provided:

Lenovo XClarity Integrator Hardware MP v7.3 – here

If you know of any other Management Packs that have been released recently that I may have missed leave me a note in the comments and I’ll add them

SCOM 2016: New management pack for Lenovo XClarity Integrator Hardware

Lenovo has released a new management pack to integrate SCOM with XClarity it is available here.

Key features include:

  • Extensive monitoring of the health of hardware components for System x and ThinkSystem servers,  Flex chassis nodes and BladeCenter blades via BMC (out-of-band mode).
  • Extensive monitoring of the health of hardware components for System x servers, Flex chassis nodes and BladeCenter blades running Windows (in-band mode).
  • Rich monitoring of the health of Flex and BladeCenter chassis/modules via the SNMP protocol.
  • Easy determination of overall system health by the aggregation of hardware health monitors.
  • Power Monitoring of UEFI/BMC System x Servers and Blades running Windows. Offers the ability to monitor overall system power usage, and generates alerts when power consumption rises above predefined consumption thresholds. Enable Power Capping and set the maximum power consumption wattage via Operation Manage Agent task.
  • BladeCenter and Blade hardware health correlation and event propagation providing BladeCenter specific hardware health condition monitoring under the Windows health explorer view.
  • Remote power on and off of Blades Servers via the Operations Manager console.
  • Offer the ability to launch a CMM Web Console of a Flex System Chassis from the Operations Manager Console.
  • Offer the ability to view System x power data using the System x Power Data Chart.
  • Offer the ability to support SQL Server database and migrate data from the PostgreSQL to the SQL Server.
  • Offer the ability to discover and manage system BMC automatically.
  • Offer the ability to configure Unified Service from the Operations Manager Console

SCOM 2016 the importance of Backing up your SSRS encryption key

Definitely not something you want to see on your second day back at work:

The report server cannot decrypt the symmetric key used to access sensitive or encrypted data in a report server database. You must either restore a backup key or delete all encrypted content.

Luckily my customer had a recent backup of the SSRS key and it was a simple matter to restore the key and restore SCOM reporting functionality.

You may be asking “How do I backup my SSRS encryption key?” no worries it is a simple procedure, I recommend making this process part of a monthly set of tasks.

First open your SQL Reporting Services Configuration Manager
Then navigate to Encryption Keys on the left hand side
Then click Backup, you will be promoted for a file name and a password

Restoring the key is similar you just select Restore from the same page and locate the key file and provide the password.

Management Pack Recap – November 2017 Wave

This is a summary of the wave of Management Packs that were released in November 2017. Information and download location in the links provided:

DHCP 2012 R2 v6.0.7307here
DHCP 2016 v10.0.9.0here
SQL Server MP v7.0.0.0here

If you know of any other Management Packs that have been released recently that I may have missed leave me a note in the comments and I’ll add them